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### How Many Zeros in a Googolplex?

```
Date: Fri, 4 Nov 94 10:22:19 EST
From: Barbara Jackson
Subject: Googolplex

This is a question from Mrs. Jackson's 6th grade math class.  We
understand what a googol is, but how many zeros are there in a
googolplex? We don't get it! Help!

Barb Jackson
C.W. Otto Middle School
Lansing, MI 48906
```

```
From: Dr. Sydney
Date: Fri, 4 Nov 1994 11:12:17 -0500 (EST)

Hello to Mrs. Jackson's 6th Grade Class!

Thanks for writing with your math question! Your question about
the googolplex is an excellent question. You know that a googol
is a 1 with a hundred zeroes behind it, right? We can write a
googol using exponents by saying a googol is (10)^(100)  If you
think about this it will make sense: a 1 with one zero behind it
is 10 = 10^1, a 1 with two zeroes behind it is 100 = 10^2, a one
with three zeroes behind it is 1000 = 10^3, etc...do you see the
pattern? What would a one with 28 zeroes behind it be in terms of
powers of ten?.

Well, a googolplex is a 1 with a googol zeroes behind it. Another
way to think about this is that it is a 1 with (10)^(100) zeroes
behind it. Expressing a googolplex using exponents we can say that
a googolplex is :
100
10
10

So a googolplex is a really really big number relative to what we
usually consider to be "big" numbers in everyday life. However, a
googolplex does not come anywhere close to approaching infinity,
which is HUGE! Have you ever studied or thought about infinity?
You might want to talk about what infinity is - it is a neat concept
in math.

I hope this is helpful. If you have any questions, feel free to
write back. We hope to hear from you again soon.

--Sydney, Dr. "Googol" Math
```

```
Date: Fri, 4 Nov 94 12:23:54 EST
From: Barbara Jackson

Thanks for the prompt reply!  The kids have the afternoon off,
but this will certainly give them food for thought on Monday.
Have a great weekend!

Barb Jackson
C.W. Otto Middle School
```
Associated Topics:
Elementary Large Numbers

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