I was in the middle of refactoring a system, and realized how important a part of life factoring is. Or how important a part of thinking it is. So I flashed back on how tiny and irrelevant it seemed in the day in math class when factoring was introduced.
How is it that factoring is taught? It's about finding the least common denominator. Simplifying fractions is the purpose, like trimming 2/4 down to 1/2, so you can compare it easily to a number like 3/2.
And how many times in my life have I used it for simplifying fractions in a literal sense? A few hundred times at the most.
But factoring for the sake of problems outside of arithmetic, that's another story.