Zero is an incredibly useful mathematical concept — particularly for place-value numbering systems — obtained by the West from the heathens of the East in the closing stages of the 1st millennium CE, which raises the question of why a benevolent god would leave his followers in the dark on such an important matter for so long.
Surprisingly, for all its usefulness, it has no actual value, that's right, zero, nought, none, nil, nada, zip, bupkis, zilch, a goose egg, nought, nix, diddly squat.
If you are having trouble locating zero, try this. Pick a number, any number. No, don't tell me what it is! Now, take your number, and subtract it from itself. This is your new number. No, I said, don't tell me what it is! Let me allow the aether to flow between our minds… your new number is zero!
Alternatively zero is the count of objects in the empty set (∅). Too dry and mathematical for you? Zero is the number of chocolates in an empty box. (Sadly.)
Dividing by zero
“”Imagine that you have zero cookies and you split them evenly among zero friends. How many cookies does each person get? See? It doesn’t make sense. And Cookie Monster is sad that there are no cookies, and you are sad that you have no friends.
- And in the standard construction of natural numbers, zero is the empty set!