User inscitek jeff - MathOverflow most recent 30 from http://mathoverflow.net 2013-05-22T17:21:16Z http://mathoverflow.net/feeds/user/538 http://www.creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/2.5/rdf http://mathoverflow.net/questions/908/why-the-search-for-ever-larger-primes Why the search for ever larger primes? InSciTek Jeff 2009-10-17T18:24:11Z 2010-09-13T05:01:17Z <p>I understand why primes are useful numbers and also why the product of large primes are useful such as for application in public key cryptography, but I am wondering why it is useful to continue the search for larger and larger prime numbers such as in the <a href="http://www.mersenne.org/" rel="nofollow">GIMPS project</a>. It would seem to me since that since it already proven that there are an infinite number of primes, I am not quite sure why working to finding bigger and bigger really matters!? Is this a "<em>Climbing Mt Everest because it is there</em>" kind of thing, or is the search and finding bigger results somehow furthering mathematics in some kind of way?</p> http://mathoverflow.net/questions/6860/proving-that-0-999-repeat-equals-1-0 Comment by InSciTek Jeff InSciTek Jeff 2009-11-26T01:50:26Z 2009-11-26T01:50:26Z None of it was taken personally. My feedback comment was rooted in the notion that over on the Stack Overflow programmer site we are a lot more friendly to the newbie type programmer questions, even if they are trivial in nature to most of us there. Also, to clarify my &quot;reputation candy&quot; comment, that was not the purpose of my question, as I was interested in a real (no pun intended) answer. Again, as on Stack Overflow, we look at newbie questions as a nice opportunity to share some of our knowledge at also to get the requisite reward. In any case, thanks for your thoughts. http://mathoverflow.net/questions/6860/proving-that-0-999-repeat-equals-1-0 Comment by InSciTek Jeff InSciTek Jeff 2009-11-26T00:44:39Z 2009-11-26T00:44:39Z You guys are brutal over here. My assumption was this was a nice softball question for somebody to get some get reputation candy on the answers, but hey, to each his own. Happy Thanksgiving to Ryan who was nice enough to provide a link in his comment. @Ryan, if you would have put that in an answer, my up vote would have given you the reputation bump.