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Happy birthday Mr. President, here are your numbers

University of Portland professor offers Obama an unusual 50th birthday gift
by: Christopher Onstott University of Portland electrical engineering professor Aziz S. Inan, Ph.D., wearing the number hat, has created an unusual formula for calculating President Obama’s 50th birthday and its relation to the world of numbers.

What do you get for the nation's commander in chief who turns 50 on Thursday?

Besides, of course, a more friendly Congress and solutions to the nation's economic crisis, you could get him . . . a bunch of prime numbers.

At least that's the birthday gift University of Portland electrical engineering professor Aziz S. Inan, Ph.D., would give President Obama. Inan is a big big big fan of numbers, especially prime numbers. He loves them and the stories they can tell.

Tribune reporter Peter Korn featured Inan in a Jan. 20 In Character conversation about - you guessed it - numbers.

On Tuesday, Inan sent an e-mail with a complicated formula for calculating the president's 50th birthday and its relationship to the world of numbers. Here's his formula. According to Inan, you'll need your calculator and a little imagination.

Here we go:

1. This year Aug. 4 coming up Thursday marks President Obama's 50th birthday since he was born on Aug. 4, 1961 (8-04-1961 or 8-4-1961). First, someone celebrating their 50th birthday in the year 2011 is perfect timing because although number 2011 is a prime number, its reverse 1102 equals 2 x 19 x 29 and these three prime numbers add up to 50!

2. There is a direct connection between Obama's birthday and year 2011. If you take Obama's full birthday expressed as 841961 and reverse it as 169148 and break this number into 16, 91, and 48, these three numbers add up to 155 and twice the reverse of 155 (which is 551) equals 1102 which is reverse of 2011, this year! Interesting connection between Obama's birthday and year 2011!

3. This is the most fascinating one! Obama was born in 1961 which equals 37 x 53 where 53 - 37 = 16 (reverse of 61). First, split 1961 in the middle into 19 and 61. Then, subtract 19 from 61 yielding 42. Then, reverse 42 and subtract it again from 61 yielding 61 - 24 = 37. So, starting with 1961 (which is Obama's birth year), we got three numbers which are 61, 42 and 37. Now, go to the table of prime numbers and pick up the 37th, 42nd and 61st prime numbers which are 157, 181 and 283. Go ahead and multiply these three prime numbers. Please, I would like you to do this. What comes out? Isn't this fascinating? Magical?? :-)

4. Let's take these three special prime numbers (157, 181 and 283) and add them up which yields 621 which equals 27 x 23 where 27 + 23 = 50, corresponding to Obama's 50th birthday!

5. Now, let's go back to 1961 and subtract from it its reverse as 1961 - 1691 = 270. Then, go to the prime numbers list and pick up the 270th prime number, which is 1733. Next, multiply 1733 with 61 and its reverse 16, that is, 16 x 61 x 1733. What do you get? Look more carefully to the number you obtained. Isn't this amazing? By the way, if one splits 1733 in the middle as 17 and 33, 17 + 33 = 50!

6. Split Obama's 50th birthday date 8042011 as 804 and 2011 and add their reverses yielding 408 + 1102 = 1510 = 151 x 10 where 151 - 10 = 141 = 3 x 47 where 3 + 47 = 50! (This is a bit of a stretch but still fun!)

7. You already know this one. Take Obama's birthday 8041961 and split it as 8041 and 961. Add these two numbers yielding 9002, which is reverse of 2009, the year Obama became the U.S. president! Now, if you split 8041961 as 8, 04, 19, and 61, 8 + 4 + 19 + 61 = 92 = 2 x 46 where 46 - 2 = 44 representing the 44th U.S. presidency! Also, 8 + 4 + 19 + 16 (which is reverse of 61) = 47, the age at which Obama became the U.S. president!