# What is the quickest way for you to count to 20 using only the fingers of your hands?

1. Mar 22, 2012

### kaleidoscope

I'm trying to find the most intuitive way to count to 20 using only the fingers of your hands. Right now my favorite is using 4 fingers on one hand to count groups of 5 from the other. Any other ideas? Please participate!

2. Mar 22, 2012

### pwsnafu

Re: What is the quickest way for you to count to 20 using only the fingers of your ha

I don't know if this counts but I was taught
1. Left thumb raised
2. Left thumb and left index finger raised
3. Left thumb, index and middle
4. Left thumb, index, middle, ring
5. All fingers (and thumb) of the left hand
6. All except thumb
7. Middle, ring, little fingers
8. Ring and little finger raised
9. Only little finger raised
This gives 0~9 on one hand. So the other hand counts the tens column.
Come to think about it, it seems having the ones column on right hand is probably more intuitive.

3. Mar 22, 2012

### Exocet

Re: What is the quickest way for you to count to 20 using only the fingers of your ha

I have a way of counting to 99 on both hands, might be a bit tricky to write out but I'll give it my best shot!
Count to 4 on your right hand using only your fingers, then hold out the thumb on its own for 5, and count up to 9 with the fingers til we have the whole hand out.
Now we can add 1 finger on the left hand for 10. If we start again and repeat the process on the right hand then we can add 20 to the left hand and 30 etc. up to 99

4. Mar 22, 2012

### Mensanator

Re: What is the quickest way for you to count to 20 using only the fingers of your ha

Just count in binary. You can get to31 on just one hand.

5. Mar 23, 2012

### TwilightTulip

Re: What is the quickest way for you to count to 20 using only the fingers of your ha

I'd be weary of doing this in class. Especially with 100 and 101

6. Mar 23, 2012

### willem2

Re: What is the quickest way for you to count to 20 using only the fingers of your ha

We want the quickest way, so we should use a gray code, so you only have to move one finger at the time.

7. Mar 24, 2012

### camillio

Re: What is the quickest way for you to count to 20 using only the fingers of your ha

Sounds like 2^10 masterclass :D

8. Mar 24, 2012

### dodo

Re: What is the quickest way for you to count to 20 using only the fingers of your ha

... pointing at a calendar?

Now seriously, I saw something in a documentary (only 30 seconds on this link need to be watched):

9. Mar 24, 2012

### disregardthat

Re: What is the quickest way for you to count to 20 using only the fingers of your ha

I can count to 120 on one hand.

5! = 120, just take the order into consideration.

10. Mar 24, 2012

### Frogeyedpeas

Re: What is the quickest way for you to count to 20 using only the fingers of your ha

@disregarthat what a wonderful combinatorics joke ;)

11. Mar 24, 2012

### Ynaught?

Re: What is the quickest way for you to count to 20 using only the fingers of your ha

I like this way... Starting from left to right with palms down, the tip of the left pinky is 1. Counting through the fingers, the tip of the right pinky is 10. The top knuckle of the left pinky is 11 and so forth. Going though the knuckles, you get to forty (I count the thumb joints at the base of the palm as 35 and 36). 41- 50 are no tips and no knuckles on each hand.

12. Mar 24, 2012

### BobG

Re: What is the quickest way for you to count to 20 using only the fingers of your ha

Chisenbop method. This is the best way of counting on your fingers (especially if you have a small crew and have to count how many people have evacuated, all while holding a checklist in one hand).

This works well. If you extend this to counting on all of your fingers and toes, you can count for almost two weeks!