Archimedes' Psammites (the Sand Reckoner)
As MrKrov said:
He likes stupid forced puns.
tried to estimate how many grains of sand would fit in a sphere a light-year in diameter.
To do that he had to (among other things) invent a system of naming very large numerals.
Is it possible he was handicapped by writing in Hellenistic Greek?
One would expect that Big Nambas
would be the language most naturally equipped to express very-large numerals.
ObConlang (also ObNatlang):
I can't find it on the CBB, so wherever I posted it must have been somewhere else, and/or it got deleted.
In your natlang or conlang, assuming your numeral base is B
, how do you (and can you) express the following numbers?
- B^(2^1) = B^2
- B^(2^2) = B^4 = the square of the above
- B^(2^3) = B^8 = the square of the above
- B^(2^4) = B^16 = the square of the above
- B^(2^5) = B^32 = the square of the above
- B^(2^6) = B^64 = the square of the above
- B^(2^7) = B^128 = the square of the above
- B^(2^8) = B^256 = the square of the above
- B^(2^9) = B^512 = the square of the above
- B^(2^10) = B^1024 = the square of the above
For instance, if your language's numeral base is ten, this would be
- 10^2 = 100 = one hundred
- 10^4 = 10,000 = ten thousand or one myriad
- 10^8 = 100,000,000 = one hundred million
- 10^16 = 10,000, 000,000, 000,000 = ten quadrillion (short count) or ten thousand million million
- 10^32 = 100, 000,000, 000,000, 000,000, 000,000, 000,000 = one hundred nonillion (short count)
- 10^64 = ten vigintillion (short count)
- 10^128 = one hundred quadrigintitrillion (did I do this right?)
- 10^256 = ten octogintiquadrillion (did I do this right?)
- 10^512 is beyond English's short-count system (which stops at 10^303);
- 10^1024 is beyond English's long-count system (which stops at 10^600).