### Etymologies

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To do this, he called the numbers up to a myriad myriad 10 8 "first numbers" and called 10 8 itself the "unit of the second numbers". This became the "unit of the third numbers", whose multiples were the third numbers, and so on. Archimedes continued naming numbers in this way up to a myriad myriad times the unit of the 10 8 -th numbers, i. Since then, many others have engaged in the pursuit of conceptualizing and naming numbers that really have no existence outside the imagination.

One motivation for such a pursuit is that attributed to the inventor of the word googol , who was certain that any finite number "had to have a name". Another possible motivation is competition between students in computer programming courses, where a common exercise is that of writing a program to output numbers in the form of English words.

Most names proposed for large numbers belong to systematic schemes which are extensible. Thus, many names for large numbers are simply the result of following a naming system to its logical conclusion—or extending it further. Subsequently, Nicolas Chuquet wrote a book Triparty en la science des nombres which was not published during Chuquet's lifetime.

However, most of it was copied by Estienne de La Roche for a portion of his book, L'arismetique. Chuquet's book contains a passage in which he shows a large number marked off into groups of six digits, with the comment:. Ou qui veult le premier point peult signiffier million Le second point byllion Le tiers point tryllion Le quart quadrillion Le cinq e quyllion Le six e sixlion Le sept.

Or if you prefer the first mark can signify million, the second mark byllion, the third mark tryllion, the fourth quadrillion, the fifth quyillion, the sixth sixlion, the seventh septyllion, the eighth ottyllion, the ninth nonyllion and so on with others as far as you wish to go.

Adam and Chuquet used the long scale of powers of a million; that is, Adam's bymillion Chuquet's byllion denoted 10 12 , and Adam's trimillion Chuquet's tryllion denoted 10 The names googol and googolplex were invented by Edward Kasner 's nephew Milton Sirotta and introduced in Kasner and Newman's book Mathematics and the Imagination [13] in the following passage:.

The name "googol" was invented by a child Dr. Kasner's nine-year-old nephew who was asked to think up a name for a very big number, namely 1 with one hundred zeroes after it.

He was very certain that this number was not infinite, and therefore equally certain that it had to have a name. At the same time that he suggested "googol" he gave a name for a still larger number: "Googolplex". A googolplex is much larger than a googol, but is still finite, as the inventor of the name was quick to point out. It was first suggested that a googolplex should be 1, followed by writing zeros until you got tired.

This is a description of what would actually happen if one actually tried to write a googolplex, but different people get tired at different times and it would never do to have Carnera a better mathematician than Dr.

Einstein , simply because he had more endurance. The googolplex is, then, a specific finite number, equal to 1 with a googol zeros after it. Conway and Guy [14] have suggested that N-plex be used as a name for 10 N.

This number ten to the power of a googolplex is also known as a googolduplex and googolplexian. None of these names are in wide use, nor are any currently found in dictionaries. The names googol and googolplex inspired the name of the Internet company Google and its corporate headquarters , the Googleplex , respectively. This section illustrates several systems for naming large numbers, and shows how they can be extended past vigintillion.

It was adapted from French usage, and is similar to the system that was documented or invented by Chuquet. Traditional American usage which was also adapted from French usage but at a later date , Canadian, and modern British usage assign new names for each power of one thousand the short scale. Due to its dominance in the financial world and by the US dollar , this was adopted for official United Nations documents.

Traditional French usage has varied; in , France, which had been using the short scale, reverted to the long scale. The term milliard is unambiguous and always means 10 9. It is almost never seen in American usage and rarely in British usage, but frequently in continental European usage.

The term is sometimes attributed to French mathematician Jacques Peletier du Mans circa for this reason, the long scale is also known as the Chuquet-Peletier system , but the Oxford English Dictionary states that the term derives from post-Classical Latin term milliartum , which became milliare and then milliart and finally our modern term.

For additional details, see billion and long and short scales. The choice of roots and the concatenation procedure is that of the standard dictionary numbers if n is 20 or smaller.

For larger n between 21 and , prefixes can be constructed based on a system described by John Horton Conway and Richard K. Guy : [14]. Since the system of using Latin prefixes will become ambiguous for numbers with exponents of a size which the Romans rarely counted to, like 10 6,, , Conway and Guy have also proposed a consistent set of conventions which permit, in principle, the extension of this system to provide English names for any integer whatsoever.

The following table shows number names generated by the system described by Conway and Guy for the short and long scales. Names of reciprocals of large numbers are not listed, as they are regularly formed by adding -th, e. The International System of Quantities ISQ defines a series of prefixes denoting integer powers of between 1 and 8. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. It's quick and easy. Community Word of the day Random word Log in or Sign up. According to the English method, a million raised to the sixth power, or the number expressed by a unit with thirty-six ciphers annexed.

See numeration. All rights reserved. Examples Estimates run between 70 sextillion a sextillion is a one with 21 zeroes after it to 3 Thestar. Boing Boing A lawsuit against Bank of America on uncertain grounds is seeking nearly two sextillion dollars in damages: Boing Boing The country has suffered enormous economic problems inflation reached over 89 sextillion percent in ! Michael Kaiser: My Trip to Harare I know the dollar has weakened lately, but a sextillion dollars would still be a lot of money.

Boing Boing The estimated number of stars in the Universe is a mind boggling 70 sextillion 70,,,,,,, , so plenty room out there for a few more wee worlds. Related Words Log in or sign up to add your own related words. Next quintillion septillion. Wordmap beta Word visualization. Comments Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation.