1. <programming> pseudorandom number.
2. <jargon> When one wishes to specify a large but random number of things, and the context is inappropriate for N
, certain numbers are preferred by hacker tradition (that is, easily recognised as placeholders).
These include the following:
17 - Long described at MIT as "the least random number"; see 23.
23 - Sacred number of Eris, Goddess of Discord (along with 17 and 5).
42 - The Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything, as revealed in Douglas Adams' "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxly".
Note that this answer is completely fortuitous :-) (US pronunciation).
It has been observed that in the little-used number base 13, the answer to the ultimate question, "What is 6 x 9?", is indeed 42, showing that in six dimensions white mice have 13 digits.
69 - From the sexual act.
This one was favoured in MIT
105 - 69 hex
= 105 decimal and 69 decimal = 105 octal
666 - The Number of the Beast.
For further enlightenment, study the "Principia Discordia", "The Joy of Sex", and the Christian Bible (Revelation 13:18).
See also Discordianism
or consult your pineal gland.
See also for values of