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Kaktovik numerals – A base-20 number system that is visually easy too (wikipedia.org)
39 points by akshaybhalotia 7 months ago | hide | past | favorite | 2 comments



19 takes seven strokes.

19 in Arabic numerals starts at the top left and takes two, maybe three strokes.

Also, a 1 followed by a five needs a lot of kerning to not get confused. And the vertical heights and offsets of the glyphs vary a lot.


The written representation is fairly easy to modify to reduce the number of strokes by making some of the breaks in the symbols be rounded.

Also the advantage of this system, for the people who designed it, is that it fits with their language's numeric system. According to the article it improves academic achievement for native speakers (don't know if that's true).

There's no suggestion that it's better for everyone or even that it's easier to write or read.

I'm bilingual and (more or less) speak/read a handful of other languages. I also teach kids maths. The way your native language counts has a significant impact on the way you think about and learn mathematics.




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