Wednesday, January 11, 2012


Today I am going to share a weird relationship I discovered with numbers. This is something I discovered because I always sat in the middle of the backseat of cars growing up, and stared at the clock for long periods. I also looked out the window a lot at county road signs.

What I discovered is that any series (that I've encountered so far) of three or four digit numbers will eventually equal zero if using addition and subtraction. I know this sounds weird, so bear with me as I explain.

Take, for example, the number 347.

The numbers in bold font are the original numbers. The regular font numbers are the result of the addition or subtraction.

Let's look at another one: 529.

As you see, it matters whether you use addition or subtraction as the first action. If you use the wrong action first, the number will get increasingly larger or increasingly smaller and not equal zero.

Here's a four digit example: 12:21

Surely I'm not the first person to notice this. However, if anyone else has, I don't know if there is a name for this phenomenon or if it means anything. I don't know how this would be useful to apply to any situation. It's just a weird thing of nature, like the golden section (or golden rectangle) that works because it works.

I invite you to try this with a series of numbers and let me know if you find one that doesn't work.

For awhile I tried to also use multiplication and division, but that got a little difficult.

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