Apologies to My Beloved Audience for the extended radio silence. I could claim I was taking a holiday break, but the truth is I just didn’t have much to say.

So, I posted last year about the discovery of the then-largest known prime number: 225,964,951-1

Well, GIMPS has done it again:

On December 15, 2005, Dr. Curtis Cooper and Dr. Steven Boone, professors at Central Missouri State University, discovered the 43rd Mersenne Prime, 230,402,457-1. … The new prime is 9,152,052 digits long.

An amusing linguistic note: The GIMPS site accurately describes this discovery as “the largest known prime number.” CNN, and every other news outlet I’ve seen this story in, however, claim (at least in the headlines) that it’s the largest prime number, period. Boy, would Euclid be surprised to hear that.