The number 24 comes next in this series. This would be similar to adding five to a number and then subtracting two from it. This is indicated by the first three numbers in the sequence: 18 – 2 = 16, and 13 + 5 = 18.
Recognizing a pattern within a sequence of numbers can aid in determining numbers that appear later in the sequence, without the need to write down the complete sequence. Knowing how to spot a pattern has other uses, such as calculating probability. Some number sequences are so prevalent that they have a name. The Fibonacci sequence, in which a number is the sum of the two numbers before it, is one example.