TED Conversations

Singer Songwriter & Vocal Coach, Lizanne Hennessey - Voice Coach


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What is it about 'three'?

"Good things come in threes."
"Third time's the charm."
"Two's company, three's a crowd"
Being a third wheel... having a three-way... a love triangle...
The Rule of three... the top three...
Could ""omne trium perfectum" be fact?

If I type the word "three" into the search bar here on TED, I get a page full of threes. 3 reasons to do this, 3 ways to achieve that...

What is about three?


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      May 16 2013: Wait. What? Did I miss a meeting? Have the numbers 1 and 2 been reclassified as non-prime? Why wasn't I told?
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          May 16 2013: My bad too! Apparently "they" decided zero and one are neither prime or composite. I think we should be able to enjoy the comfort of knowing that all natural numbers are either Prime or Composite, but, oh no. Even though one (1) is not the product of any other natural numbers (a valid definition of Prime) it is denied the highly-honored status (similar to the USDA meat grading system) of PRIME. You forced me to Bing it. Here's what I found: "If 1 is not a prime number, then any composite number (such as 12) can be written as a product of primes in only one way (here, 2*2*3), not counting different orders. However, if 1 were a prime number, there would be infinitely many ways! We could write 12 for example, as 2*2*3, or 1*2*2*3, or 1*1*1*1*1*2*2*3. Having only one way to write a number as a product of primes is very useful when doing math." So, XZ, once again we see math can be imprecise, arbitrary, and fickle.
        • May 16 2013: I like how the word 'fickle' has been used twice in this conversation... I wonder if it'll be used a third time?
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          May 16 2013: As Michael Scott, Manager, Dunder-Mifflin Scranton Branch said, "I'm not superstitious but I am a little stitious." Three cheers for TED's three foci . . . Technology-Entertainment- Design!!!
    • May 16 2013: ZX, yes! Driemaal is scheepsrecht! Third time's the charm! This number is definitely not exclusively used in English!

      "But three, is a-symmetric and still in balance." I like this idea - three could mean balance.

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