that 4byte ASN you were considering...

Ian Mason nanog at
Wed Oct 11 13:40:45 UTC 2006

On 10 Oct 2006, at 22:54, Per Gregers Bilse wrote:

> [This isn't meant to be flippant or anything else of the kind, it's
> a genuinely heartfelt thing, albeit maybe a bit off topic.]
> What all things computer related has needed from day one is a way
> of pronouncing ("reading out loud") hexadecimal.  My first computer
> was a 6502, and I've resented numbers larger than FF since then
> (been working with AMD Opterons for a couple of years now,  
> disturbing).
> If you print and read in hex, you don't need dots or any other  
> syntactic
> aids, the human eye/brain can easily group the requisite number of  
> digits,
> at least for the time being.
> The problem is that from and including A we can't talk about the
> damned things any more -- we resort to spelling out each number, with
> no inherent and natural feel for what we're taling about.
> An A380 has a maximum take-off weight of around 24E (two-four-E)  
> tonnes.
> An A380 has a maximum take-off weight of around 590 (five hundred  
> and ninety)
> tonnes.
> Solve that, and we don't need any new notations beyond subtle  
> groupings,
> just like we group thousands and millions in decimal notation.
>   - Per
This is so, so off topic it's not true. I started this as an off-list  
to Per but I'm so pleased with my solution that I can't help sharing it.

Take the solution from natural languages. Most languages I speak (or  
a smattering of) have a regular or semi-regular way of pronouncing  

Single digit numbers have a unique name.

10 (the base) has a unique name.

Numbers from 11 to 19 have a name with a suffix and a sound similar  
to the terminating
digit usually with a break from the rule for 11 and 12. (nine,  
nineteen) (fünf, fünfzehn)
We'd regularize that and not have

Two digit numbers with a zero in the lowest position have a name  
using, again,  suffix and a similar
sound to the name of the single significant digit involved. (four,  
fourty) (vier, vierzig)

100 has a unique name. 1000 has a unique name. Multiples of either  
are said
<digit name> <multiplier name>.

That's enough rules apart from the rules for combining all the above  

So, we just need:-
	1) Unique names for all the single digit numbers.
	2) A unique name for the base.
	3) A suffix sound for 1x form numbers.
	4) A suffix sound for x0 form numbers.
	5) As many unique names for x00000... form numbers as we feel we need.
	6) A combining rule(s).


	1) Use the english names for 0..9. A..F may need new names if
	combined versions sound too similar to the compound forms.

	2) 0x10 = hen

	3) Use the suffix -heen for 0x11 .. 0x1f

	4) Use the suffix -he for 0xX0

	5) 0x100 = hexdred, 0x1000 = hexdrend

	6) use the english combining rules

	7) Try lots of combinations and then revisit 1. e.g
	0xA0 becomes 'Aye'-he which sounds too much like eighty for
	comfort; so A may need a new name.


	0x5432 = five hexdrend, four hexdred and thirhe two.
	0x1017 = one hexdrend and sevenheen
	0x10000 = hen hexdrend

Happy counting,


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