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Remember long numbers with words

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Remembering long numbers can be a daunting job. Even if you can, there’s a good chance you will mix up. Try PI value. Most of us can remember only few digits after the decimal, I can only recall up to 3.141. That doesn’t matter to us at all, when we need to remember the new credit card number.

Let’s try to remember the PI value for this demonstration – 3.14159265359. Strip off the decimal point, so it is now 314159265359. That’s a 12 digit number to remember. Credit card numbers are up to 16 digits.

Now with a number to remember, head over to PinFruit.com. Enter the number there. You will then see a list of words to choose from, choose words wisely to make a meaningful sentence to remember. For PI value, I see a lot of words to pick one. I chose Meteor. Going on and on, choosing to assemble a meaningful phrase, I end up with, METEOR TAIL BEEN HUGELY MELLOW PATH.

pinfruit ss1

It says the number is fully encoded or is translated to words. If you are not happy with the word combinations you can click the “blue” arrow to go back word by word to change,

It is translated, and you got a sentence to remember that makes sense (somewhat). It could be a while before you find that combination you like and ready to remember it. So you memorized it. How to get that sentence back to numbers or decode it?

Instead of talking about that in the beginning I decided to talk about it now, Because it would be boring with all those stuffs I am about to talk if talked from the beginning with no example to lead. Now there are words to decode. How does “METEOR TAIL BEEN HUGELY MELLOW PATH” translate into 314159265359?

Mnemonic major system or just Major system is powering the “key” that unlocks the words. It is a phonetic system that’s been around for 300 years now and is a widely used number memorizing technique, PinFruit just automates the grunt work of manually choosing words to memorize. The system looks easy to remember. The “key” is a mapping of letters to numbers. 3 is translated to M. That’s how we got the M in the METEOR. As you can see in the image above, 314 is assigned to METEOR. Not all letters in the word has a number assigned.

Digit Phoneme Examples Hint
0 s,z yeszoo zero starts with z, s sounds similar
1 t,d toy, day t has similar shape to 1, d sounds similar
2 n wing n has two downstrokes
3 m home m has three downstrokes
4 r ear last letter of four
5 l whole L is the roman numeral for 50
6 j,sh,ch jaw, show, issue, witch -
7 k,g okguy capital K contains two sevens
8 f,v few, view f resembles 8
9 p,b happy, bath p and b resemble 9

With the mapping, you can see that the Meteor is MeTeoR. Only MTR has got a number value to it, not all the letters got the numbers assigned, I know, it is quite difficult to extract the letters that has got value to decode the parts of the number as you move along the sentence. The assigned letters are phonemes. The only memorizing job here is to learn by heart, the phonemes and its value, with the hint above or your own. No hint for 6, so your hint could be j is a broken 6, or sh and ch could be again a broken 6, (h). For the word issue, it’s pronounced ishue, so it’s sh. When you see ss or cc, it’s sh or ch. Also 2 letters repeating is considered as 1, as in the case of number 9 with happy and z sounds s, so whenever a z comes it’s 0. More details here.

PinFruit could have made the decoding tool, none available on the internet as well. With the hint, association of numbers and letters it’s quite easy to remember. Extracting the phonemes from words is quite challenging. But once you have it written down the sentence, for example, METEOR TAIL BEEN HUGELY MELLOW PATH to MeTeoR TaiL BeeN huGeLy meLLow Path, it looks quite easy. Seeing that everyday makes the extraction easy.

Even after you have memorized the number, you still have your words translation handy.

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