Challenge Level

115^2 = (110 x 120) + 25, that is 13225 895^2 = (890 x 900) + 25, that is 801025 Can you explain what is happening and generalise?

An account of methods for finding whether or not a number can be written as the sum of two or more squares or as the sum of two or more cubes.

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Which is the biggest and which the smallest of $2000^{2002}, 2001^{2001} \text{and } 2002^{2000}$?

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Find all real solutions of the equation (x^2-7x+11)^(x^2-11x+30) = 1.

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Evaluate without a calculator: (5 sqrt2 + 7)^{1/3} - (5 sqrt2 - 7)^1/3}.

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The sums of the squares of three related numbers is also a perfect square - can you explain why?

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Find the smallest positive integer N such that N/2 is a perfect cube, N/3 is a perfect fifth power and N/5 is a perfect seventh power.

Challenge Level

Which is the bigger, 9^10 or 10^9 ? Which is the bigger, 99^100 or 100^99 ?

Peter Zimmerman from Mill Hill County High School in Barnet, London gives a neat proof that: 5^(2n+1) + 11^(2n+1) + 17^(2n+1) is divisible by 33 for every non negative integer n.

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What do you get when you raise a quadratic to the power of a quadratic?

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Find 180 to the power 59 (mod 391) to crack the code. To find the secret number with a calculator we work with small numbers like 59 and 391 but very big numbers are used in the real world for this.

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Solving the equation x^3 = 3 is easy but what about solving equations with a 'staircase' of powers?

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a) A four digit number (in base 10) aabb is a perfect square. Discuss ways of systematically finding this number. (b) Prove that 11^{10}-1 is divisible by 100.

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Can you prove that twice the sum of two squares always gives the sum of two squares?

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Find the five distinct digits N, R, I, C and H in the following nomogram

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Show without recourse to any calculating aid that 7^{1/2} + 7^{1/3} + 7^{1/4} < 7 and 4^{1/2} + 4^{1/3} + 4^{1/4} > 4 . Sketch the graph of f(x) = x^{1/2} + x^{1/3} + x^{1/4} -x

Challenge Level

Given any 3 digit number you can use the given digits and name another number which is divisible by 37 (e.g. given 628 you say 628371 is divisible by 37 because you know that 6+3 = 2+7 = 8+1 = 9). . . .

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Prove that for every right angled triangle which has sides with integer lengths: (1) the area of the triangle is even and (2) the length of one of the sides is divisible by 5.

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What does this number mean ? Which order of 1, 2, 3 and 4 makes the highest value ? Which makes the lowest ?

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Is it true that $99^n$ has 2n digits and $999^n$ has 3n digits? Investigate!

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When is $7^n + 3^n$ a multiple of 10? Can you prove the result by two different methods?

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$2\wedge 3\wedge 4$ could be $(2^3)^4$ or $2^{(3^4)}$. Does it make any difference? For both definitions, which is bigger: $r\wedge r\wedge r\wedge r\dots$ where the powers of $r$ go on for ever, or. . . .

Challenge Level

What are the possible remainders when the 100-th power of an integer is divided by 125?

This article for students and teachers tries to think about how long would it take someone to create every possible shuffle of a pack of cards, with surprising results.

Challenge Level

Which is larger: (a) 1.000001^{1000000} or 2? (b) 100^{300} or 300! (i.e.factorial 300)

Challenge Level

Find $S_r = 1^r + 2^r + 3^r + ... + n^r$ where r is any fixed positive integer in terms of $S_1, S_2, ... S_{r-1}$.

Challenge Level

Use the fact that: x²-y² = (x-y)(x+y) and x³+y³ = (x+y) (x²-xy+y²) to find the highest power of 2 and the highest power of 3 which divide 5^{36}-1.

We are used to writing numbers in base ten, using 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9. Eg. 75 means 7 tens and five units. This article explains how numbers can be written in any number base.

An introduction to coding and decoding messages and the maths behind how to secretly share information.