Kaktovik Numerals


I’m fascinated by the Inuit languages in Alaska, Canada and Greenland. There are many of these languages: they ring much of the Arctic Ocean. I just learned that they use a base 20 system for numbers, with a ‘sub-base’ of 5. That is, quantities are counted in scores (twenties) with intermediate numerals for 5, 10, and 15. This makes a lot of sense if you look at your fingers and toes.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://johncarlosbaez.wordpress.com/2023/04/17/kaktovik-numerals/

This is awesome! It reminds me a bit of shorthand systems used by journalists, but this is more logical.

Now do algebra next…

I don’t know the shorthand by journalists.

(Hmm, I’m not sure I like comments here instead of on my blog!)