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Sir Roger Penrose has quantified the "very special" nature of the big bang as being "1 part in 10 to the 10 to the 243", but I do not understand what this really means - my apologies but I cannot even write the figure properly, either using notation, as my phone only copes with 1 line of superscript, or by employing solely regular numerals, as apparently even if I could fit each zero onto it's own proton there would still not be enough protons in the observable universe for me to complete it, (or have I misconstrued Sir Roger here? Presumably he at least understands the basics of scientific notation!)

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  • $\begingroup$ Is your question what does something like '10 to the 10 to the 243' mean? $\endgroup$ Jul 15 at 13:48
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    $\begingroup$ MathJax: $10^{10^{243}}$ yields $10^{10^{243}}$. $\endgroup$ Jul 15 at 13:50
  • $\begingroup$ Yeah, that's not scientific notation. Just a power tower. $\endgroup$
    – DKNguyen
    Jul 15 at 13:51
  • $\begingroup$ Indeed. You can interpret the number as '1 with $10^{243}$' zeros behind it, where $10^{243}$ is 1 with 243 zeros behind it. It's a very big number. E.g. even $10^{10^2}$ is 1,000,000,...[94 more zeros]. $\endgroup$ Jul 15 at 13:55
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You can interpret the number you mentioned, $10^{10^{243}}$, as '1 with $10^{243}$' zeros behind it, where $10^{243}$ is 1 with 243 zeros behind it. It's a very big number. E.g. even $10^{10^2}$ is 1,000,000,...[with 94 more zeros].

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