According to pop culture, 42 is the answer. Answer to what? Answer to life, the universe, and everything.

The prime factorization of 42 = 2*3*7. This gives the factors: 1,2,3,6,7,14,21, and 42 itself: six proper divisors for a total of seven divisors. 6 and 7 are 1 apart, and 6 times 7, or 7 times 6, = 42, an identity which can be helpful for students to memorize.

The sum of 42's proper divisors is 54, making 42 an abundant number. This sum is higher than any previous number, so 42 is highly abundant.

The whole numbers 42 is between, 41 and 43, are both prime numbers.

42 is the sum of the diagonals through the center, the rows, and columns of a magic cube:

- Because 42 has some small divisors, it ends in a 0 for factorable bases. Because 42 is square free, 42 won't end in two zeroes, just one.
- In binary, 42 is "101010".
- In ternary, 42 is "1120".
- In quaternary, 42 is "222", a repunit!
- In quinary, 42 is "132".
- In seximal, 42 is "110". Converting 110 from binary to a large enough base gives the digit 6, the radix of seximal!
- In septimal, 42 is "60".
- In octal, 42 is "52".
- In nonary, 42 is "46".
- In decimal, 42.
- In elevenary, 42 is "39".
- In dozenal, 42 is "36".
- In baker's dozenal, 42 is "33".
- In biseptimal, 42 is "40".
- In triquinary, 42 is "2C". A digit for twelve is required, which is C.
- In hex, 42 is "2A", where A is for ten.
- In suboptimal, 42 is "37".
- In triseximal, 42 is "3B".
- In untriseximal, 42 is "3F".
- In vigesimal, 42 is "3J".
- In triseptimal, 42 is "20".
- In negabinary, 42 is 1111110

and -42 is 101010. - In negaternary, 42 is 12210

and -42 is 2110. - In negaquaternary, 42 is 322

and -42 is 1232. - In negaquinary, 42 is 222

and -42 is 1443. - In negaseximal, 42 is 240

and -42 is 1510. - In negaseptimal, 42 is 110

and -42 is 1610. - In negoctal, 42 is 132

and -42 is 66. - In neganonary, 42 is 156

and -42 is 53. - In negadecimal, 42 is 162

and -42 is 58. - In negelevenary, 42 is 189

and -42 is 42. - In negadozenal, 42 is 196

and -42 is 46. - In negabaker's dozenal, 42 is 1X3

and -42 is 4X. - In negabiseptimal, 42 is 1B0

and -42 is 30. - In negatriquinary, 42 is 1DC

and -42 is 33. - In negahex, 42 is 1EA

and -42 is 36. - In negasuboptimal, 42 is 1F8

and -42 is 39. - In negatriseximal, 42 is 1G6

and -42 is 3C. - In neguntriseximal, 42 is 1H4

and -42 is 3F. - In negavigesimal, 42 is 1I2

and -42 is 3I. - In negatriseptimal, 42 is 1J0

and -42 is 20.

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