Two largest known prime numbers discovered just two weeks apart, one qualifies for $100k prize

Two largest known prime numbers discovered just two weeks apart, one qualifies for $100k prize

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Two new records for the largest known prime number have been set, both breaking the 10 million digit threshold. On August 23, Edson Smith, a systems engineer for the Program in Computing laboratory at the University of California, Los Angeles in California, United States, confirmed the primality of the number through his work as a volunteer in the distributed computing project known as the Great Internet Mersenne Prime Search, or GIMPS. This new prime number is expressed as two to the 43,112,609th power minus one, and consists of 12,978,189 decimal digits when written out. This number qualifies GIMPS for a $100,000 award from the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), offered to the first person or group to discover a prime number of 10 million digits or more. According to GIMPS’ prize agreement, $50,000 will be given to the UCLA Department of Mathematics, $25,000 will be given to charity, $20,000 will be split among previous discoverers of Mersenne primes, and GIMPS will keep the remainder for funding and other uses. Smith, who was contacted by Scientific American by phone, said that the discovery was “quite unexpected.”

Just two weeks later, on September 6, another Mersenne prime was discovered, this time by German electrical engineer Hans-Michael Elvenich, who worked for the chemical company Lanxess in Germany. This number is expressed as two to the 37,156,667th power minus one, and is 11,185,272 digits long. However, since this prime number was discovered later than the one found on August 23, it does not qualify for the EFF prize. Elvenich said that it was a “finally a great success” after having participated in GIMPS for four years.

A prime number is a positive integer that can be evenly divided only by 1 and itself. For example, 2, 3 and 11 are prime numbers. 21 is not a prime number because it is a product of 3 and 7. These types of prime numbers are called Mersenne primes, which can be expressed as one less than a power of two. Mersenne primes are rare, and only 46 are known up to now. The first few Mersenne primes are 3, 7, 31, 127 and 8191.

These numbers took a total of several weeks to verify, using different software and hardware. Each number was independently checked by several members of GIMPS’ verification team, using 16-core systems of different configurations. The two primes were announced by GIMPS on September 16. Before these two discoveries, the two previously largest known prime numbers were discovered by UCMO professors Curtis Cooper and Steven Boone in Missouri, United States, and their record lasted almost three years. Historically, prime numbers discovered by GIMPS are larger than the one previously found. The only other exception was when the 29th Mersenne prime was discovered after the 30th and 31st were found.

Founded by M.I.T. graduate George Woltman in 1996, GIMPS has found 12 Mersenne primes, or about one per year on average. Volunteers who wish to help find primes can download a program called Prime95, which runs in the background.

Smaller prime numbers, such as those with a few hundred digits, are often used in cryptography. The recently discovered prime numbers are too large to have much practical value, although it is believed by some that such prime numbers may still have undiscovered uses. However, mathematics enthusiasts often seek them for fun, and the GIMPS community is already looking forward to finding a 100 million digit prime that will qualify for a $150,000 prize from the EFF.

St. Anthony Foundation provides hope

St. Anthony Foundation provides hope

Friday, September 23, 2005

On the corner of Golden Gate Ave. and Jones St. in the Tenderloin, San Francisco, right next to the Civic Center you can see a throng of low-income and homeless people lining up outside of St. Anthony’s Dining Room hall which opens up it’s doors everyday at 11:30 a.m. Volunteers dressed in St. Anthony Foundation shirts help keep the lines moving as hundreds of homeless and low income people shuffle their way towards the dining hall underneath the watchful eyes of a small statue of St. Francis of Assisi.

“There’s a lot of people who go hungry out here and it ain’t right.” says Jimmy Scott, a slightly brawny 44-year-old black man who has been living homeless in San Francisco for the past three years. “There are families out here with kids and everything and they have to walk around all night just to stay awake so they don’t get hurt or killed…Right here in the U.S. this is going on…it ain’t right.”

The dining hall, which has been open for the past 54 years, is owned by the St. Anthony Foundation which helps low income and homeless people and families in the Civic Center, Tenderloin, and SOMA areas with clothing, shelter, food, drug rehabilitation, and many other services. St. Anthony’s administrative offices are found at 121 Golden Gate Ave. with the majority of the foundation’s buildings on Golden Gate Ave. and Jones St.

“We are right in the heart of the homeless population of San Francisco,” says Barry Stenger, 55, who’s been working for the St. Anthony Foundation for one year, and is the Director of Development and Communications, “and people are pushed here because of the economic forces of San Francisco because it’s hard to be upper middle class in San Francisco.”

According to the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce, “San Francisco’s cost of living remains one of the highest in the country” with the average household income in San Francisco being around $76,400 and the average price of housing being $543,000. Average household income for the United States in 2002, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, was $42,409 and the average price of housing for the United States according to the National Association of Realtors was $185,200 in 2004.

“We served our 32 millionth meal on Tuesday,” said Stenger, “and we serve 2,500 meals a day. Some of our people who work here actually get served [food] here because they spend all their money towards rent and medical costs.”

The St. Anthony Foundation was started by Fr. Alfred Boeddeker in 1950 one year after Fr. Boeddeker became pastor of St. Boniface church on Golden Gate St. where he was baptized as a child. During his lifetime, according to the foundation’s website, he was referred to as the “Patron St. of the Tenderloin” and had Boeddeker park named after him because of his, and his foundation’s, achievements with helping out the homeless and low income community.

“[St. Anthony’s] is a good thing,” said Jimmy Scott, “they provide a good service and they feed people and they clothe them and provide furniture when you get housing and give you groceries when you have AIDS. It’s a good little organization.”

“Our dining room is open 365 days a year.” Said Stenger. “Our other facilities are open seven days a week. We have a residence for senior women and our [free medical] clinic is open five days a week and we also have a furniture and clothing store. We have 12 programs all together.”

Some of those programs are the Father Alfred Center which provides 61 men two programs for getting out of drug and alcohol abuse, the Employment Program/Learning Center which helps participants in educational and employment opportunities and provides each one with a personal staff advisor, and a Senior Outreach and Support Services center which states its mission is to “promote independence, self determination, and alleviate isolation” for seniors who are 60 and older.

A few homeless people who were interviewed complained that St. Anthony’s had some staff who were rude and that they were kicked out of the dining hall; other homeless within the area refuted those claims saying St. Anthony’s has nice staff and only kicks people out who cause trouble.

“It’s a good place and good people. Everybody is so kind and so respectful and everything is under control.” Said John Henderson, a tall and skinny 57-year-old homeless black man who has only been living in San Francisco for close to two months because he recently moved there from Phoenix, Arizona. “It’s pretty cool because they’re under control because yesterday I saw at Glide [Memorial Church which also has services for the poor and low income] and they were handing out food boxes and people were just rushing in and the woman in charge there was freaking out and so she just sat down. That would never happen at St. Anthony’s.”

“And they clean too!” Henderson said laughing with a grin on his face referring to the fact that there are no drugs allowed in the premises. “Not that Glide ain’t clean if you know what I mean.”

“We [also] have a whole division that deals with justice education and advocacy to change the system that brings people to our doorstep.” Said Stenger. “We hear a lot of appreciation from the people we serve. We get a lot of testimony from our clients who have become clean and sober. Sometimes we have to push them a little to get them out the door because they love the [foundation] so much because it has changed their lives.”

This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.
This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.

US Supreme Court judge Ginsburg undergoes surgery for pancreatic cancer

US Supreme Court judge Ginsburg undergoes surgery for pancreatic cancer

Thursday, February 5, 2009

United States Supreme Court Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, 75, has undergone surgery for early pancreatic cancer today. The disease was spotted during a routine check-up. She is likely to be hospitalised for ten days.

“Justice Ginsburg had no symptoms prior to the incidental discovery of the lesion during a routine annual checkup in late January at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland,” the Supreme Court announced.

Ginsburg underwent sugery and had chemotherapy for colorectal cancer in 1999; her mother and husband also suffered from cancer.

She was appointed to the Supreme Court by President Bill Clinton in 1993, and is considered to be on the liberal wing of the nine-member court.

A spokesman for President Barack Obama said that Obama’s thoughts and prayers are with Ginsburg.

According to the American Cancer Society, the one-year survival rate for pancreatic cancer is 24%, and the five-year survival rate is 5%.

Commonwealth Bank of Australia CEO apologies for financial planning scandal

Commonwealth Bank of Australia CEO apologies for financial planning scandal

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Ian Narev, the CEO of the Commonwealth Bank of Australia, this morning “unreservedly” apologised to clients who lost money in a scandal involving the bank’s financial planning services arm.

Last week, a Senate enquiry found financial advisers from the Commonwealth Bank had made high-risk investments of clients’ money without the clients’ permission, resulting in hundreds of millions of dollars lost. The Senate enquiry called for a Royal Commission into the bank, and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC).

Mr Narev stated the bank’s performance in providing financial advice was “unacceptable”, and the bank was launching a scheme to compensate clients who lost money due to the planners’ actions.

In a statement Mr Narev said, “Poor advice provided by some of our advisers between 2003 and 2012 caused financial loss and distress and I am truly sorry for that. […] There have been changes in management, structure and culture. We have also invested in new systems, implemented new processes, enhanced adviser supervision and improved training.”

An investigation by Fairfax Media instigated the Senate inquiry into the Commonwealth Bank’s financial planning division and ASIC.

Whistleblower Jeff Morris, who reported the misconduct of the bank to ASIC six years ago, said in an article for The Sydney Morning Herald that neither the bank nor ASIC should be in control of the compensation program.

US Airspace violation raises Turkey regional tensions

US Airspace violation raises Turkey regional tensions

Monday, May 28, 2007

Two US Air Force F-16‘s have violated Turkish airspace for four minutes over Hakkari province on 14 May 2007. The F-16’s had reportedly taken off from Afghanistan.

The air violation comes at the same time Turkish Armed Forces conducting a search and destroy operation against the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) making preparations for a possible military operation in north of Iraq. Turkey, NATO, and European Union considers PKK to be a terrorist organization.

Turkey had stepped up the pressure on Iraq and the United States to eliminate PKK presence in northern Iraq since the suicide attack at Ankara on May 22, 2007 which killed 6 people wounded 79.

The US Embassy in Ankara stated that: “The interpretation that this was a message to the Republic of Turkey was most certainly not true. This incident is strictly two US pilots confusing the border. The investigation is being conducted by the US Air Force.”

Prime minister Recep Tayyip Erdo?an on a program on the Turkish channel NTV stated that “if there is another airspace violation what needs to be done is clear”. In military literature this translates to “unidentified military craft will be shot down” according to the Hürriyet.

Texas baby removed from life support against mother’s wishes

Texas baby removed from life support against mother’s wishes

Tuesday, March 22, 2005Sun Hudson, a six-month old Texas baby died last week when health care providers at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston, Texas removed his life support system over the objections of his mother. The action was authorized under the 1999 Futile Care Law which was signed into law by then-Gov. George W. Bush.

Under the Texas Futile Care Law, health care workers are allowed to remove expensive life support for terminally ill patients if the patient or family is unable to pay the medical bills.

Sun Hudson’s mother is dealing with the aftermath of that law. “This hospital was considered a miracle hospital. When it came to my son, they gave up in six months,” Wanda Hudson told reporters how she was forced to give up medical control of her son. “I talked to him, I told him that I loved him. Inside of me, my son is still alive.”

The hospital had blocked the media from the child, despite mother’s invitation to see the baby. “I wanted y’all to see my son for yourself. So you could see he was actually moving around. He was conscious,” she said.

The event stirred national attention as it sparked comparisons to the Terri Schiavo case in Florida. A victim of severe, and otherwise terminal brain damage, Terri Schiavo’s future is locked in a legal battle between her husband who wants to remove life support and her parents, who cite religious reasons for keeping their daughter alive.

Michael Schiavo, husband of Terri Schiavo, was asked about the Hudson situation on the March 21 edition of CNN’s Larry King Live. When King asked how Mr. Schiavo felt when he learned that President Bush had signed such a law in Texas while he was governor, Schiavo was at a loss of words.

But Schiavo’s lawyer did respond, saying, “Obviously, there’s a tremendous amount of hypocrisy there … it would lead one to believe that a lot of this was politically motivated, and I think that’s what the American people have concluded.” Schiavo’s lawyer echoed the sentiments of Florida Representative Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, a Democrat, who raised the “hypocrisy” question when she first mentioned the 1999 Texas law issue on the House floor last week.

Over the weekend, President Bush signed a special federal law that moved jurisdiction of the Schiavo case out of the state of Florida and into the U.S. federal court system after Florida courts ruled that Michael Schiavo had the right to remove Terri’s life support, which includes a feeding tube and intravenous liquids.

After signing the Schiavo Law Sunday, President Bush said, “It is wisest to always err on the side of life.”

Four arrested in three Naperville, Illinois prostitution stings

Four arrested in three Naperville, Illinois prostitution stings

Monday, March 15, 2010

An undercover investigation by Naperville, Illinois law enforcement has led to the arrest last Thursday of four people allegedly involved in prostitution. The stings came after police received tips that people were using websites like Craigslist and to sell sexual performances in Naperville hotels. 

Patricia H. Scoleri of Naperville was arrested after an unidentified neighbor observed consistently suspicious activity at Scoleri’s home. Traffic was unusually heavy and consisted mostly of luxury cars in an otherwise quiet, middle-class neighborhood. Also, the visitors were mainly middle-aged men, and an odd string of lavender-colored lights were hung on the front window.

Police say Scoleri worked alone. She was arrested at 2 p.m. local time (2000 UTC) and is charged with violation of anti-prostitution laws, anti-cannabis laws, and the Massage Licensing Act. She apparently has four children, but the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services has neither contacted her nor received a police report on her.

The second sting occurred at 5:30 p.m the same day (2330 UTC) and resulted in the arrest of Chicago resident Tonya M. Adams. She is charged with prostitution and driving without a license. Another sting about an hour later resulted in the arrests of Jessica M. Walley, a Skokie resident, and Mark A. Williams, a self-admitted Schaumburg gang member. “Walley was charged with prostitution and unlawful possession of cannabis. Williams was charged with pimping, obstructing a peace officer, driving with a suspended license and driving without insurance,” reports WBBM News Radio 780.

All four suspects are free, having paid the required ten percent of their $1,000 bail. They may face additional charges related to crack cocaine discovered during the police investigation. Arraignment is scheduled for next month at the DuPage County Circuit Courthouse in Wheaton.

Football: Liverpool reaches agreement with Southampton FC to sign van Dijk

Football: Liverpool reaches agreement with Southampton FC to sign van Dijk

Saturday, December 30, 2017

On Wednesday, English football club Liverpool FC announced reaching an agreement with Southampton FC to sign Dutch centre-back Virgil van Dijk. According to the reports, the Dutchman would cost Liverpool £75 million making him the most expensive defender of all time as well as the most expensive player in Liverpool’s history.

In an Instagram post, van Dijk wrote, “Delighted and honoured to have agreed to become a Liverpool FC player!” The defender is to join Liverpool on January 1, when the transfer window opens. He is to wear number 4 jersey, the club announced on their website. The Reds tried to sign the Dutchman in summer after he formally requested a transfer.

van Dijk joined The Saints in 2015 for a fee of £13 million from Celtic and he penned a six-year contract with the club last year. Since 2014, Liverpool has signed five players from Southampton for about £171.5 million.

Liverpool is currently fourth in the Premier League table with 41 points in 21 games. They have conceded 24 goals in the league this season. Seventeen points behind league leaders Manchester City, Liverpool is scheduled to play Burnley in an away game on January 1, but would not be able to field van Dijk.

Congressman Cunningham admits taking bribes

Congressman Cunningham admits taking bribes

Monday, November 28, 2005

U.S. Representative Randy “Duke” Cunningham (RCA) pled guilty today to conspiring to take bribes in exchange for using his influence as a member of the House Appropriations Committee to help a defense contractor get business. In total he pled guilty to one count of income tax evasion and four counts of conspiracy, namely mail fraud, wire fraud, bribery of public official and accepting bribes. U.S. District judge Larry A. Burns scheduled Cunnigham to be sentenced on February 27. He is facing up to 10 years in prison and nearly $500,000 in fines, as well as forfeiture of unspecified amounts of cash and property.

In the court hearing, Cunningham admitted to accepting “bribes in exchange for performance of official duties” between “the year 2000 and June of 2005”, taking “both cash payments and payments in kind” and following up by “trying to influence the Defense Department”.

The federal investigation against Cunningham was triggered by his sale of his California residence to defense contractor Mitchell Wade in late 2003. However, Wade never moved in and sold the house at a $700,000 loss three quarters of a year later. At the same time Wade’s company MZM won tens of millions of dollars in defense contracts. Subsequent investigations discovered more questionable business transactions, including interactions with the defense contractor ADCS. In his plea agreement he testified that, among other charges, he “demanded, sought and received at least $2.4 million in illicit payments and benefits from his co-conspirators in various forms, including cash, checks, meals, travel, lodging, furnishings, antiques, rugs, yacht club fees, boat repairs and improvements, moving expenses, cars and boats.”

Cunningham announced his resignation after the hearing. In a written statement released by his law firm O’Melveny & Myers LLP he declared “The truth is — I broke the law, concealed my conduct, and disgraced my high office. I know that I will forfeit my freedom, my reputation, my worldly possessions, and most importantly, the trust of my friends and family.”

Reducing The Cost Of Heating Oil In Mystic, Ct

byAlma Abell

When the snow flies, the thermometer plummets, and every homeowner can hear the sound of their bank accounts emptying. It does not need to be this way. Heating oil companies understand the strain on their customers’ accounts, so they are always looking for ways to help them conserve.

Heating Oil in Mystic CT, is offered on an on-call basis or through a process of automatic delivery. Some companies choose to operate their automatic systems on a once-a-month delivery plan, but many others have upgraded their technologies.

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These companies use a process of delivering according to “degree days.” These programs use a formula based on how much oil the average consumer uses at each outside temperature. This program tracks the temperature every day and estimates when the next round of deliveries need to be made. Certain factors, like the average amount of oil the customers used the previous winter, are also taken into account.

This means customers are only given deliveries when they actually need them, rather than unexpectedly at a specific date -; even when it is not really needed. It saves everyone money in another important way, too. The companies are able to streamline their delivery systems, putting trucks on the road only when it is really necessary. When companies operate more efficiently, they are able to save money, and those savings can be passed on to their customers.

It is important for everyone to understand that Heating Oil in Mystic CT, is not free for the delivery companies either. These people also heat their homes and businesses and they understand the stress a long, cold winter can cause for everyone.

It is because of this they are always seeking ways to reduce prices and offering payment plans or budget plans to make it easier for people to afford to keep their homes comfortable all year. They also provide sensible service plans which will help to ensure that your heating system operates at peak efficiency.

If you are ready to learn more about saving money on your oil bill and making those remaining bills easier to pay, discover more info here. Start a budget plan today, and you will feel much more secure about caring for your home and family this winter.

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