Have you ever wondered what it is ’10’? You have 10 fingers, right? Well, the answer actually depends on the numeral system that you use. In duodecimal (or dozenal), for example, you in fact have ↊ fingers, in binary 1010, in octal 12 and in Quinary 20. The decimal system is so prevalent and everywhere that it is sometimes hard to escape its perspective. But what if it wasn’t the case?
To be honest I hate decimal numeral system. The more you think about it the shittier it gets. 10 is divisible only by 2 or 5, which are primes. Fractions and rations are always cumbersome to calculate, and kids have hard time understanding infinite repeating decimals of fraction like 1/3. We as a humankind can do better. Let’s just simply switch to duodecimal!
The duodecimal system has a rich history, dating back to ancient civilizations such as the Egyptians. In Europe, duodecimal arithmetic was widely used in commercial transactions in the Middle Ages. The duodecimal system’s long and varied history is a testament to its effectiveness and usefulness. Even right now we still use it to a limited extent e.g. when counting time, in phrases like a ‘dozen’ or even by the fact that in English there are separate works for 11 and 12 and not onety-one and onety-two.
One of the most significant advantages of the duodecimal system is that it makes it easier to perform mental calculations. This is because the duodecimal system has more factors than the decimal system, making it easier to divide numbers. In addition, the duodecimal system’s factors are more intuitive, because 10 in dozenal (12 in decimal) is divisible by 2, 3, 4, and 6, which are more relevant to daily life than the decimal system’s 2 and 5. For example, when dividing 10 in dozenal (12 in decimal) by 3, you get 4, which is a whole number. This simplicity makes it easier to work with fractions and decimals, making it an ideal system for scientific and engineering calculations.
Finger counting is also more efficient with the duodecimal system. With ten fingers, the decimal system limits you to counting only to ten, but with a different technique, you can actually count to twelve on one hand alone! Simply use your thumb to count the joints on each finger, and voila, you have successfully counted to twelve. Now you can easily keep track of all your belongings, do maths, all with just one hand keeping the other hand free to do whatever you like!
The duodecimal system also provides more opportunities for numbers to have whole number fractions. For example, 1/3 in the decimal system is a repeating decimal, but in the duodecimal system, it is a simple fraction represented by the 0;4 (notice the semicolon). Similarly, 1/4 in the decimal system is 0.25, but in the duodecimal system, it is represented by 0;3. This simplicity in fractions makes it easier to understand and work with them, making it a more efficient system overall.
Of course, switching from the decimal system to the duodecimal system is no easy task. Decimal system is everywhere and changing people’s perspective will take time. It will also take a lot of investment to rewrite all the systems that rely on the decimal system to use dozenal. However, the benefits of the duodecimal system are worth the effort. It provides a more intuitive and efficient way of doing math during everyday tasks. It will also be much easier for small kids to learn mathematics bringing humanity’s progress to a next level!
All in all, I do see that the duodecimal system is an efficient and intuitive way of counting, with benefits that have been recognized throughout history. Its advantages are clear: it allows for easier mental calculations, simpler fractions, and more intuitive factors. While it may take some effort to switch from the decimal system, the benefits of the duodecimal system are worth it. So why not give the duodecimal system a try and see how it can improve your life? You do not have to switch completely, just next time when buying sweets or beers, just buy 12 instead of 10. Your kids will be grateful.
As a test this post was co-authored by ChatGPT.