MILESTONE 8: Factors & Primes

The following lessons provide some basic understanding of factors and prime numbers.


The use of FACTORS and PRIME NUMBERS has declined in the world of calculators today. However, a conceptual understanding of these concepts leads to insights that calculators and computers cannot provide.                       

The factors are obtained from EXACT DIVISION. The divisor and the quotient are the factors of the dividend. When a number cannot be factored into a pair of smaller numbers then it is a prime number.

A composite number has a unique set of prime factors.

The following is a list of prime numbers to a thousand or so. You may find this list useful.

You may now attempt to find the next ten prime numbers after 1013.

Here are some videos from Khan Academy on this subject.

Prime Numbers

Greatest Common Divisor


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  • vinaire  On January 17, 2012 at 10:14 PM

    One must understand the ideas underlying mathematics. Then one can think systematically and logically.



  • vinaire  On February 7, 2012 at 3:54 PM

    Mathematics contains the most pristine logic. If this logic is not understood then one does not understand mathematics.

    Using mathematics mechanically does not imply that one understands mathematics. Mechanical use of mathematics is like using computer programs without understanding how they are put together.


  • vinaire  On September 11, 2012 at 8:23 PM

    Milestone 8 appears to be one of the most popular essays on this blog. I would like to get some feedback on why it is so popular.



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