One of my favorite things in math is to mess with numbers and understand them deeply, learning about their unique characteristics.

Recently, one of the most exciting things I learned about was **Cornell University’s research on prime numbers.** Two researchers took the first 100 million prime numbers and ran algorithms on them, finding that they were not randomly spread out.

`In short, the researchers found the following. Firstly, because there are no even primes other than 2, and any number ending in 5 that is larger than 5 is not a prime number, all prime numbers must end in one of the following digits: 1, 3, 7, or 9. Because there are only four options for the last digit of a prime number, all primes should show a 25% spread. However, the discoveries of these researchers showed otherwise. `**While prime numbers ending in 3 and 7 had a 30% chance of appearing**, numbers that ended in 9 had a 22% chance, and even more interestingly, **numbers ending in 1 had only an 18.5% chance of appearing.** In short, this study shows that prime numbers are not randomly spread out but rather follow a pattern that we have not yet been able to uncover.

Why does this research on prime numbers matter, though? Because the very thing that protects our privacy and information, cryptography, depends almost entirely on prime…