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I'm trying to translate the following sentences (source):

And finally they found a fast way that was 100%.
And if they're not it's composite. It's 100% this test.

but I do not understand that 100%.

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  • Can you give us more context? Where did you find these sentences?
    – stangdon
    Commented Mar 22, 2017 at 15:39
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    There's a "non-standard deletion" involved here. The context is mathematicians searching for a new way to establish quickly whether any given number is "prime" or not. The missing word is probably And finally they found a fast way that was 100% reliable (or similar, such as accurate). Note that the entire text on that page is poor quality English. Don't think of it as a model to emulate. Commented Mar 22, 2017 at 15:52
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    @stangdon, I think mstorkson has inserted the source in my question text.
    – Jdamian
    Commented Mar 22, 2017 at 15:53
  • @FumbleFingers I disagree that the text is poor quality English. You are probably correct in saying not to think of it as a model to emulate but it is how native British English communicate when using informal spoken language. (I am not an expert and have no formal English qualifications)
    – RedPython
    Commented Mar 22, 2017 at 17:04
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    @RedPython: I only glanced at it first time around. I now see it's a transcript of a conversation, which obviously makes a lot of difference. And while the transcription may be accurate in terms of the actual words spoken (I don't know), it contains plenty of additional errors in respect of the orthography, so I wouldn't recommend it even if you wanted to accurately reflect all the "mistakes" people frequently make in relaxed spoken contexts. Commented Mar 22, 2017 at 17:29

1 Answer 1

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This is an informal usage, so I wouldn't use it outside of casual conversation/communication.

And finally they found a fast way that was 100%.

What this means, is that this new method they are discussing works every time, for every case (at least they are making the claim). It works "100% of the time", and they're just shorting that to "100%".

100%

Can be used inexactly in english slang to indicate something that is very good. For example if I said

I'm feeling 100% today

It would mean I am feeling very good, as though I am capable of using "100%" of my abilities and faculties.

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    This answer is 100% correct! In this case the phase is being spoken by Dr Grimes. - a professional mathematician famous for his Numberphile video contributions, so I think it is safe to assume that when he says, "a fast way that was 100%" he is not using slang, rather the method works 100% of the time.
    – RedPython
    Commented Mar 22, 2017 at 16:49

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