Mathematicians Discovered Something Super Freaky About Prime Numbers

Recently, a pair of mathematicians decided to test this “randomness” assumption, and to their shock, they discovered that it doesn’t actually exist. As reported in New Scientist, researchers Kannan Soundararajan and Robert Lemke Oliver of Stanford University in California have detected unexpected biases in the distribution of consecutive primes.

The mathematicians made the discovery while performing a randomness check on the first hundred million primes. Within that set, a prime ending in 1 is followed by another ending in 1 just 18.5 percent of the time. That shouldn’t happen if they were truly random—we should expect to see this happen 25 percent of the time (keep in mind that primes can only end in 1, 3, 7, or 9). So while this isn’t a pattern—it’s also not totally perfectly random. In terms of the back-to-back distribution of the other numbers, primes ending in 3 and 7 appeared 30 percent of the time, and consecutive 9s appears about 22 of the time. Importantly, this observation has nothing to do with the base-10 numbering system, and is something inherent to primes themselves.

http://gizmodo.com/mathematicians-di...out-1764839266
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