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Hexadecimal Number Words

You may be wondering how to pronounce numbers written in hex. If so, you're not the first. Even computer geeks have argued over the matter, as this Slashdot discussion from 2003 shows. Until now, you had one of two choices: enunciate every single digit like you're reciting a phone number, or convert to base ten to use current number words. Neither choice is optimal for thinking or communicating in hex.

Even if hex continues to play second fiddle to decimal, it's not going away any sooner than digital computers. So to make life easier for the computer geeks using hex on a daily basis and the Information Age school kids who should be, we propose the following system of hexadecimal number words for the English language:

Basic Numbers (1–10)

Cardinal Ordinal Cardinal Ordinal
1 one first 9 nine ninth
2 two second A ten tenth
3 three third B eleven eleventh
4 four fourth C twelve twelfth
5 five fifth D draze drazeth
6 six sixth E eptwin eptwinth
7 seven seventh F fim fimth
8 eight eighth 10 tex texth

Two-Digit Numbers (11–FF)

The Teeks (11–1F)

# Word # Word
11 oneteek 19 nineteek
12 twenteek 1A tenteek
13 thirteek 1B levteek
14 fourteek 1C twelfteek
15 fifteek 1D drazeteek
16 sixteek 1E epteek
17 sevteek 1F fimteek
18 eighteek ? umpteek

Ordinals are created with the suffix -th. For example, 19th would be nineteekth.

Two-Digit Multiples of Tex

# Word # Word
20 twentek 90 ninetek
30 thirtek A0 tentek
40 fourtek B0 levtek
50 fiftek C0 twelftek
60 sixtek D0 drazetek
70 sevtek E0 eptek
80 eightek F0 fimtek

The above words combine with the words for one-digit numbers in the same manner as base-ten words. For instance, 21 would be twentek-one and 9E would be ninetek-eptwin. For ease of speech, eleven may be shortened to leven making BB levtek-leven.

Ordinals are created through the same process, making 21st twentek-first, 9Eth ninetek-eptwinth, and BBth levtek-leventh. The ordinals for the two-digit multiples also use the suffix -th, making 80th eightekth.

Powers of Tex

102 hundrek 100 256A
103 thousek 1000 4,096A
104 millek 1,0000 65,536A
108 billek 1,0000,0000 4,294,967,296A
10C trillek 1,0000,0000,0000 281,474,976,710,656A
1010 quadrillek 1,0000,0000,0000,0000 18,446,744,073,709,551,616A

Since quadrillek is a very large number, names for powers of tex larger than it are unlikely to be useful and hence not created, though it is rumored in some circles that a 1 with a hundrek 0s behind it is a googlek.

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