One easy way to visualize numbers that are very big or very small

When numbers get either very, very large or very, very small, it's hard to conceptualize exactly what they mean. But this vintage video is a simple guide to comprehending numerical extremes.

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Made back in 1977, the "Powers of 10" video was recommended by commenter OmegaUnlimited, after reading this piece on just how to comprehend incomprehensibly large numbers : "This is how I introduced powers of 10 and scientific notation in my math classes. It gives a good idea how to wrap your head around large (and small) numbers."

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It's a science classic—and a great way to see numbers that are hard to imagine.

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DISCUSSION

notoriousZENO
notoriousZENO

man, this brings me back to my first upper-division math course when they finally told us what the biggest number was.