Googolplex

The Googolplex is not to be confused with the Googleplex (Google, Inc.’s Headquarters). Googolplex is the name of a number (just like π = 3.14…). A very large number…

1 Googolplex = 1010100

This is how you would write out a googolplex. That is the highly compact version. To get an idea of how BIG a googolplex is, here is the observable universe:

A nifty website allowing you to get some perspective on how big the universe is, and how small you are.

Magnifying the Universe – A nifty website allowing you to get some perspective on how big the universe is, and how small you are (click on the image to go there).

Now keep in mind that it has been estimated that there are approximately 1082 hydrogen atoms in the Observable Universe. This  Article explains how that number is derived. Of course, this is a VERY rough approximation. However, it gives you an idea of how big a Googolplex is. So big that not even the H atoms in our observable universe come close.

Scale of the Universe - a slightly more detailed version of Magnify the Universe. This time you're NOT the smallest thing.

Scale of the Universe – a slightly more detailed version of Magnify the Universe. This time you’re NOT the smallest thing (click on image to go there).

We have already established that a Googolplex is a very “large” number. So what happens if you decide to count to one googolplex? Turns out you probably can’t. Not unless you are immortal… and have a lot of time to spare… and find a new universe to do it in because this one will be gone by then.

A person counting at two numbers a second, would take this long to reach these:

One million 5 days, 18 hours, 53 minutes, 20 seconds
One billion 15 years, 308 days, 9 hours, 41 minutes, 50 seconds
One googol 1.584 x 1090centuries!!!
One googolplex 5 x 1010^99 seconds. We can’t convert that into centuries or anything because our calculators can’t handle numbers that big (not to mention our brains).

-The Procastinators Club, The Almighty Googolplex 

Still can’t get your head around the enormity of the Googolplex? Worry not! It’s perfectly normal. Here is a song by Helen Arney that will put your mind at ease (or not).

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WTF, Evolution?

WTF, Evolution?

“Honoring natural selection’s most baffling creations. Go home, evolution, you are drunk.”

Have you ever looked at a photo of a creature and wondered if someone has abused Photoshop? Well, there are tons of wonderful, weird, and downright wacky animals out there. WTF, Evolution? lets you know what evolution was thinking (or not thinking).

How Secure is Your Password?

How Secure is Your Password?

This nifty website (click on picture) allows you to test how quickly your password can be cracked.

Many people don’t know how to make their password secure enough. By following some simple tips, you can prevent people (and computers) form cracking your password.

The longer your password the better it would seem. However, variety is just important as length. For a more secure password use these tips:

  1. Many varied characters (DO NOT: bob / DO: mathematics forever)
  2. CAPITAL letters (DO NOT: password, PASSWORD / DO: pasSworD)
  3. Add some numbers (DO NOT: numbers / DO: numbers6712)
  4. Easy to remember, but NOT too easy to guess (DO NOT: Myname1992, Honorificabilitudinitatibus1992 / DO: CATSareTHEbest4ever)

Microsoft.com have their own tips and password checker. Check it out!

wikiHOW have a page to guide you through creating a secure password.

When Zombies Attack!!!

WHEN ZOMBIES ATTACK!: MATHEMATICAL MODELLING OF AN OUTBREAK OF ZOMBIE INFECTION

Ever wondered what will happen if there was a zombie apocalypse? Well, it really doesn’t matter. What’s more important is how the zombie infection will spread. Can we even have a zombie infection outbreak?

Philip Munz, Ioan Hudea, Joe Imad, and Robert  Smith have the answer (in a way). Borrowing “facts” from popular media, they have made a model of what the zombification of humanity will look like (in numbers + some graphs).

Even if you have no idea how infectious disease modelling works, read their article (the link is above). It’s pretty fun, easy to understand, and educational. Just don’t take it too seriously.

And if you can’t be bothered to read it, here is what the authors concluded:

“While aggressive quarantine may contain the epidemic, or a cure may
lead to coexistence of humans and zombies, the most effective way to contain the rise of the undead is to hit hard and hit often.” (p. 146)

I suggest you hit them with this.

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