This website blog chronicles my exploration into using symbology to represent alternative numerical base systems. My ultimate goal is to uncover and simplify known, and unknown, mathematical processes and connections between these systems. This is a hobby and should be taken as such. Thanks for visiting.

010 Trincubic Finger Counting

How does a person count in a base 27, three dimensional number system, using only his or her fingers?


It turns out, there IS an easy way to do it.

First, we create three variables:

Finger: The three middle fingers are used to represent the upper ternary sub-digits.

Segment: Each of those fingers have three phalanges. These three padded areas of the finger will be used to represent the middle ternary sub-digits.

Side: Hold your left palm open and facing toward you. Twist your wrist slightly one direction, then the other. As we examine individual phalanx, we will see that 3 sides are visible. The fourth side, the outside area of the phalanx is obscured. We will use these three areas to represent the lower ternary sub-digits.

Now, we use our thumb (or a finger from the opposing hand for people that have problems reaching) to point somewhere within those three variables.

Most aspects of finger counting apply. Instead of using individual fingers to represent integers, you are using sections of the fingers.

This same system can be mirrored on the opposing hand as well. This then provides an easy system for adding/subtracting double digit trincubic numbers. In decimal, that translates to a range of 0 to 729.

Using my handy video phone, I have recorded a sample of how the Trincubic numbers, 0 to 26, can be counted on your fingers using this one handed method.