Wednesday 7 November 2012

Prime movers and shakers

Prime movers and shakers

 THAT’S MATHS: PRIME NUMBERS are of central importance in pure mathematics and also in a wide range of applications, most notably cryptography. The security of modern communication systems depends on their properties. Recall that a prime number is one that cannot be evenly divided by a smaller number. Thus 2, 3 and 5 are primes, but 4 and 6 are not, since 4 = 2 x 2 and 6 = 2 x 3. Primes are the atoms of the number system: every whole number is a product of primes.

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