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Old 2005-04-28, 22:25   #1
jasong
 
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"Jason Goatcher"
Mar 2005

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Default What are you accomplishing?

I noticed in an older thread(circa 2004, I think) that there were complaints that participation in NFSNET was severely lacking. 2 reasons jump out at me:

(1) You are sieving "tiny" numbers, which makes you seem less important

and

(2) Many people, myself included, have no idea what you're trying to accomplish.

You can't do much about #1, in my opinion, but even a partial answer to #2 could be very helpful.

I'm not trying to criticize, just trying to point out what I noticed in my 20-30 minutes here. A Sticky with a basic explanation and a bunch of links would be VERY helpful.
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Old 2005-04-29, 02:21   #2
Wacky
 
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First, I suggest that you visit our web site, www.nfsnet.org. The discussion in this forum is not our primary focus.

As for "tiny" numbers, I don't know what you expect. Remember that we are doing the COMPLETE factorization, not simply looking for "a factor" as some others do for larger numbers.

By the standards of the Factoring community, 2,811-, aka M811, which we did last year, is quite large. It would have set a new record except that another group managed to edge past us while we were processing the matrix of the LA phase. So it occupies the #2 spot.

Admittedly, we are presently doing some smaller numbers. These numbers are all highly desired by the Cunningham Project.
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Old 2005-04-29, 12:31   #3
R.D. Silverman
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jasong
I noticed in an older thread(circa 2004, I think) that there were complaints that participation in NFSNET was severely lacking. 2 reasons jump out at me:

(1) You are sieving "tiny" numbers, which makes you seem less important

and

(2) Many people, myself included, have no idea what you're trying to accomplish.

You can't do much about #1, in my opinion, but even a partial answer to #2 could be very helpful.

I'm not trying to criticize, just trying to point out what I noticed in my 20-30 minutes here. A Sticky with a basic explanation and a bunch of links would be VERY helpful.
A. The sieving that takes place is NOT the same type of sieving used to
find small factors of Mersenne numbers.

B. We are completely factoring numbers, not just finding a single tiny factor
of a much larger number.

C. Freud would have something interesting to say about people concerned
that something is tiny.

D. The Cunningham project to factor numbers of the form a^n +/- 1 (and
the various extensions of the project) may be the longest, ongoing
computational project in history. [the search for Mersenne primes
has a similar history]. The most natural question to ask about 2^p-1, if
it isn't prime is "what are its factors?" The Cunningham project (and Brent's
project) extends this to other bases.

BTW, as a matter of historical fact, I feel a little peeved that my name
isn't attached to Brent's project. It is called the 'Brent, teRiele, Montgomery'
project and extends the Cunningham project from base 13 up to base 100.
However, long before the project had become formalized and published by
Brent, I had extended the Cunningham project to base 30 and had factored
over 90% of the numbers a^n +/- 1 for 13 < a <= 30 and n <= 100.
Indeed, Brent started building his tables based on what I had done.
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Old 2005-05-04, 21:28   #4
jasong
 
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"Jason Goatcher"
Mar 2005

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wacky
First, I suggest that you visit our web site, www.nfsnet.org. The discussion in this forum is not our primary focus.
I actually discovered that site after posting the first post. A Sticky with just a weblink, as well as a weblink here from that site, would be very helpful.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wacky
As for "tiny" numbers, I don't know what you expect. Remember that we are doing the COMPLETE factorization, not simply looking for "a factor" as some others do for larger numbers.
I realize the numbers are HUGE by certain standards. I wasn't trying to insult anyone, I was simply trying to make an empathetic statement about the way it may appear to others. I apologize for any offense.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Wacky
By the standards of the Factoring community, 2,811-, aka M811, which we did last year, is quite large. It would have set a new record except that another group managed to edge past us while we were processing the matrix of the LA phase. So it occupies the #2 spot.
I agree that it's huge when it comes to actual full factorization.

For what it's worth, when I complete my goal in another project(sometime around the 20th) I'm seriously considering donating my lonely Sempron cycles to this project. That being said, here is what I meant by the subject line,"What are you accomplishing?:"

I'm very interested in the mathematical science behind it, and would appreciate some reference material.
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Old 2005-05-05, 18:45   #5
Jeff Gilchrist
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jasong
I actually discovered that site after posting the first post. A Sticky with just a weblink, as well as a weblink here from that site, would be very helpful.
You mean like this sticky which has been there since the web forum was created: http://www.mersenneforum.org/showthread.php?t=646
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Old 2005-05-05, 19:16   #6
akruppa
 
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"Nancy"
Aug 2002
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One might argue that this sticky thread is kinda drowned out by all the sticky factorization announcements. Maybe those could be made non-sticky after a while. Or perhaps have one sticky, locked thread with only factorization announcements, and separate non-sticky discussion threads for each factorization.

Alex
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Old 2005-05-06, 00:51   #7
rogue
 
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"Mark"
Apr 2003
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Quote:
Originally Posted by akruppa
One might argue that this sticky thread is kinda drowned out by all the sticky factorization announcements. Maybe those could be made non-sticky after a while. Or perhaps have one sticky, locked thread with only factorization announcements, and separate non-sticky discussion threads for each factorization.

Alex
That is a good suggestion.
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