# Strange Number Systems

1. May 24, 2004

### quddusaliquddus

There have been strange number systems used in the past in different parts of the world ... do you know any?

2. May 24, 2004

### HallsofIvy

I've mentioned this before: The T'lingut people of coastal Washington State, United States and British Columbia, Canada, counted on the spaces between their fingers rather than on their fingers and so had a number system based on 4 and 8 rather than 5 and 10.

3. May 24, 2004

### quddusaliquddus

Lol...that bold[is] strange

4. May 24, 2004

### Zurtex

lol, but I would imagine a lot easier to work with computers if they had ever made it to the computer age.

5. May 24, 2004

### EL

Must say I would like to have that system instead...to me it looks more beautiful!

6. May 24, 2004

### Gokul43201

Staff Emeritus
For a long time, number systems were "baseless". Look at Roman Numerals for instance - it takes cartloads of numerals to write a 4 or 5 digit (decimal) number.

Now isn't that strange ?

7. May 25, 2004

### quddusaliquddus

Lol....Gokul...ur right

8. May 25, 2004

### AKG

I don't know about that. The Romans had an awkward number system, but most civilizations before, during, and after them I would assume, had decent number systems. The Hindu system of numbers upon which our current decimal system is based existed either before or during the time of the Romans. Also, I don't think number systems, except for the Romans (all I can think of) were baseless. The first number systems were a base 1 system -- tallying.

9. May 25, 2004

### quddusaliquddus

I'm surprised about the Romans - not that i didn't know about their system - but that they could do so much and then have a crappy number system. I'm sure they had extensive contact with other civilisations esp. the Hindu one. Does any1 know y they decided to stik to their number?>

10. May 25, 2004

### Parth Dave

they mayans had a base 20 number system

11. May 25, 2004

### chroot

Staff Emeritus
Conventions die hard. Consider the imperial system of measurements.

- Warren

12. May 25, 2004

### Gokul43201

Staff Emeritus
Guess the Romans were too busy hacking up people in circuses or having neverending orgies.