Strictly speaking, there cannot be such a thing as the biggest number in the world. One can simply keep adding to a given total. The following are some of the largest numbers that have actually been used and identified.
The googolplexian is 1 with a googolplex of zeros. It is currently the largest number with a scientific name. The second biggest is the googolplex. A googolplex is the number 1 with a googol of zeros. A single googol is 1 with a hundred zeros. The term googolplex (sometimes spelled as googleplex) was invented by Milton Sirotta.
The Guinness Book of Records lists Graham’s number as the biggest number in the world used scientifically. The number was named for Ronald Graham, who was working on the Ramsey theory. The number garnered public attention via an article written in Scientific American in November 1977.
In it, Martin Gardner described Graham’s number as the biggest ever used for a mathematical proof. It gained even more attention when it was included in the Guinness Book of World Records beginning in 1980.
How Big is Graham’s Number?
There are other large numbers like the googolplex, Moser’s number and Skewes’ number. But Graham’s number is much bigger than any of them. In fact, the observable universe is not large enough to represent Graham’s number (given that every digit occupies a single Planck volume). Power towers used for describing large numbers are also inadequate.
In simple terms, the number is so big standard notation of powers cannot be used to express them. Suppose you can change all the material in the universe to a pen and ink. These would still be insufficient to write Graham’s number. When Graham’s number has to be explained, the notation made by Donald Knuth has to be used.
Based on research, the last ten digits of Graham’s number are 2464195387. According to experts who have studied Ramsey’s theory, the answer to Graham’s problem is in likelihood the number 6.
Proof No Largest Number Exists
Assume that N is the largest number. By simply adding 1 (N + 1) to the equation, the number becomes larger than the largest number in existence.
hile many people still consider Graham’s number as the biggest number in the world, there may other larger numbers being used by mathematicians today. But as stated earlier, one can simply keep adding numbers forever, so it is infinite.