Monday, November 30, 2015

All primes in terms of one: non-associative algebra and Google cloud computing

Under addition, the positive integers 1, 1+1, 1+1+1,.... form a cyclic (semigroup) structure generated by 1. We will explore a way of representing prime numbers in terms of the single generator g = 2, under a non-associative, non-commutative binary operation "o" on the set A of all primes, defined by setting x o y:=P(2x+y) where P is the greatest prime factor function. For example, 3 = 2 o 2, 5 = 2 o (2 o (2 o (2 o 2)))), etc. In a joint work with Paul A. Vicol from Simon Fraser University, we managed to verify that all primes up to 7259167 can be expressed as non-associative products involving the symbols 2, o, and parentheses ),(. This computational evidence points towards a cyclicity conjecture for the (magma) structure (A, o). Moreover, we searched for other similar non-associative algebraic structures on A (prime magmas) that might be cyclic, established a set of fairly restrictive necessary conditions for cyclicity, formulated a more general cyclicity conjecture for special prime magmas, and found computational evidence (after days of running Julia programs on a GCE platform) for the cyclicity of the structures in a representative set. (October 24, 2014 - MAA Ohio Fall Meeting)