Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Base 12

A sort of fun post from Alex Bellos today on using 12 instead of 10 as the basis of our mathematical system, as pushed by the "Dozenal Society of America" (who knew there was such an organization!). Most folks are aware of the binary system and other bases lower than 10, but employing bases greater than 10 gets less attention. There have always been many reasons why base 12 (also known as "duodecimal" or "dozenal") would make a lot of utilitarian sense, even if as a practical matter, it will never happen:

Wikipedia on base 12 here:

And the Dozenal Society's website here:

(Somehow though, asking for a baker's dozen donuts and only expecting 11, just doesn't seem as appealing... ;-)) 

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