## 2/14/2010

### Week 1: So It Begins

Hello one and all to 06/07: The Numbers Game, which should remain the title of this blog until I think of a better one. =P

So! What is the purpose of this website, then? Well, to put in in basic terms, once (or twice or thrice, depending on how much or how little time I have) a week, I'll be comparing the sixth of a lineage or series with its next, seventh, counterpart, i.e. the 6th vs. the 7th (or no. 6 vs. no. 7).

Examples that I'll probably be doing include Henry VI vs. Henry VII and Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country vs. Star Trek Generations. That sort of thing.

Why 6 and 7 and not, say, 1 and 2; 3 and 4 or 8 and 9 or any other permutation of such numbers? The answer is simple and can be seen as easily as the numbers on my house door.

...yeah.

Other numerically interesting facts about 6 and 7 are as follows:

6 + 7 = lucky 13
6 × 7 = 42, the answer to life, the universe and everything
76 = 1, the fundamental unit
6 ÷ 7 = 0.857142, repeating
7 ÷ 6 = 1.166666, repeating

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Now, without further ado, let's bring out our first two contestants!

VS.

That's right, we'll be examining the two fundamental numbers that form the basis of this blog. This will be done through a comparision of their mathematical properties, with a roundup and final verdict at the end.

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DISCLAIMER: This blog does not claim to hold any sort of objective criteria or rubrics for comparision. All results should not be used for any kind of academic or scholarly research.
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THE NUMBER 6

Also known as: Seis, Kuusi, Έξι, Sei, 六

MATHEMATICAL PROPERTIES:

• Second smallest composite (not prime) number
• Smallest perfect number (factors of 1 + 2 + 3 = 6, the original number.)

• Only number that is both the sum and the product of three consecutive positive numbers (i.e. 1 + 2 + 3 = 6 = 1 × 2 × 3)

• 3! = 6

• A 6-sided 3d block, the cube, is one of the five Platonic solids

OTHER (SCIENTIFIC AND SYMBOLIC) PROPERTIES

• There exist 6 types of quark and lepton (what those are is another question)

• Carbon has an atomic no. of 6

• Honeycombs are hexagonal

• 6-fold symmetry of snowflakes

• All insects have 6 legs

• The Star of David has 6 points

• 666, the number of the Devil

• 6 days of Shawwal plus Ramadan equals fasting for the Islamic year

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THE NUMBER 7

Also known as: Siete, Sept, επτά, 七

MATHEMATICAL PROPERTIES:
• Fourth prime number (2, 3, 5, 7)

• Mersenne prime (2^3 − 1 = 7), Double Mersenne prime (2^7 − 1 = 127, another prime)

• Lowest number that cannot be represented by a summation of 3 squares

• Value of the opposite sides of a six-sided die

• Most likely value when you roll 2 dice (combinations include 1 + 6, 2 + 5, 3+ 4, reverse)

OTHER (SCIENTIFIC AND SYMBOLIC) PROPERTIES:

• 7 SI units: m, kg, s, A, K, mol, cd

• 7 colors of the rainbow: ROYGBIV (Richard of York* Gave Battle in Vain)

• Nitrogen has an atomic no. of 7

• 7 celestial objects visible from Earth (Sun, Moon, Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus, Saturn)

• 7 days of creation, Jericho fell on the 7th day, 7 virtues and sins, etc.

• 7 chakras

• 7 Heavens, 7 Fires of Hell

• 7 arms in a menorah, 7 days of Passover, etc.

• 7 Lucky Gods

• 7 Hindu Sages

• etc...

*Watch out for him when we eventually reach Henry VI vs. Henry VII!

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FINAL JUDGMENT:

While 6 has a fair amount going for it (Perfect number, factorial, the cube's a Platonic solid), 7 also comes in strong as it's not just a prime, not just a Mersenne prime but a double Mersenne prime (among a lot of other types of primes), and also comes in very useful for gambling if you need to roll two dice.

Scientifically, both seem neck and neck: Snowflakes, Carbon, leptons and quarks and insects aren't too bad for 6, and 7 is pretty strong too with the almost as essential Nitrogen, the 7 SI units and the 7 visible stellar objects (not to mention the rainbow).

Unfortunately for 6, it falls short in symbolism: while it's got stakes in Islam, Judaism and Christianity, 7 utterly trounces it, with at least 50 whole mentions across the previously mentioned three along with Hinduism and Japanese folklore (in Wikipedia at least), and of course is the traditional "lucky number", crossing cultural divides as we can see.

All in all, the winner of the inaugural tie is THE NUMBER 7! Everybody give it a big hand, won't you?

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RUNNING TALLY:

SIX 0 : 1 SEVEN

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That's all for today, folks! See you next time on 06/07: The Numbers Game!

#### 2 comments:

1. Is your celestial being count truly correct? After all, at least hundreds of stars are visible in the night sky. Even when you count in light pollution, Orion's belt is pretty much obvious anywhere in the world.

2. It's the 7 "classical" ones, probably from a time when people still thought stars formed a ring of sparkles around the solar system.

Also: Thanks for taking some time to look at this random patch of randomness! =P