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KANSAS CITY, Missouri (AP) -- Researchers at a Missouri university have identified the largest known prime number, officials said Tuesday. The team at Central Missouri State University, led by associate dean Steven Boone and mathematics professor Curtis Cooper, found it in mid-December after programming 700 computers years ago.

A prime number is a positive number divisible by only itself and 1 -- 2, 3, 5, 7 and so on.

The number that the team found is 9.1 million digits long. It is a Mersenne prime known as M30402457 -- that's 2 to the 30,402,457th power minus 1.

WHY, WHY, WHY, does this kind of thing need to be researched? And 700 computers?:googly: I'm glad to see people in college have absolutely NOTHING better to do with their time than come up with new numbers. What a waste of time and money. That's a State University. Your tax dollars at work, kids.:( :eek: :mad:
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