Do you know the rare Indian method of counting up to 400 digits with ten fingers?

  • Anand Jagathiya
  • The future of the BBC

Many people around the world are learning to count with their fingers. But not everyone follows the same method. Are there better methods of calculating with your fingers?

How to calculate 10 digits with your fingers? Are you starting to count with your thumb? Or start with the index? Count first with the left hand or with the right hand? Typing (the process of calculating by hand) seems like an easy and natural method. Suppose it is used equally all over the world.

It is no coincidence that in arithmetic there are usually 10 digits and we have 10 fingers on the hand. Since we have ten fingers on our hands, we can develop a 10-digit counting system in basic math.

If we were born with 8 or 12 fingers, the statistics would be different.

How did you start to count with your fingers?

The word “digitus” comes from Latin. Digitus means finger or toe. Scanned by VjOOQIC We use to calculate.

Easy to count with your fingers. We assume that everyone counts the same with their fingers.

For example, if you are from the UK or other parts of Europe, the left hand will start counting from the thumb and end with the little finger.

Americans start counting from the index finger and end with the thumb.

Start with the little finger in the Middle Eastern country of Iran.

In Japan, the hand is first opened and then the fingers are counted one by one.

When Mexicans counted fists… Yuki speakers who disappeared in California also counted joints between fingers.

These are all variations that we show in the basic calculation of the number system.

How to count after ten fingers?

However, the cultural diversity in finger counting has not been properly recognized. “Most researchers believe that there is only one way to count with your fingers. This fact must be taken into account. ”

When children are learning to count, they use their fingers as a tool to try to figure out numbers. In the past, researchers believed that the docilonomy approach used by Westerners to children was appropriate. But there is reason to doubt this approach. Cultural differences in the use of fingers or body parts to count numbers have led to this suspicion. ”

In parts of Tanzania in East Africa, they calculate to keep both hands as symmetrical as possible. For example, to point to the number 6, they point to the index, middle and ring fingers of both hands. Large numbers cannot be calculated this way. Because he doesn’t have enough fingers. But this problem does not occur in all areas.

Indian 2D method to count 400 with ten fingers.

For example, in the Indian school system, the lines between the fingers are used instead of the fingers for counting. That is, a finger represents 4 different numbers… a hand represents a total of 20 numbers. So we can count more numbers than Westerners use by hand.

Now, researchers refer to all of the methods we have mentioned as one-dimensional (one dimensional – 1D) methods.

It also includes two-dimensional approaches (2D-2D). These are used by traders in Maharashtra.

In this procedure, up to 5 digits are counted with the fingers of the left hand. Suppose it is a set and lift your finger from the right hand. Again count 6 to 10 with the fingers of the left hand, raising both fingers of the right hand assuming it’s the second set. He does up to five sets.

That is, we can recognize 25 digits in one hand. If this two-dimensional method is applied in the Indian school system, 20 × 20 or up to 400 hands can be calculated with both hands.

Method of Roman symbols with 9 fingers.

In some areas, fingerprints and markers are used to count numbers, regardless of the number of fingers.

In China, the American method is used to calculate 1 to 5. But the numbers 6 to 10 are represented by different symbols. Figure 6 indicates that the hand 6 is fully bent and that only the thumb and little finger are raised. Clenching the fists or pointing the index and middle fingers together is considered to be 10 digits.

Likewise in China, there are symbols for counting more than ten digits with the fingers.

The ancient Romans used intelligent symbols in numerology. Based on these symbols, they would point to thousands of numbers with their bare hands. It should be noted that they also have a mark to indicate the number 9000.

The Chinese method can be used to a certain extent, but it is difficult to match the symbols which represent thousands of digits in the Roman style.

Bender said the finger counting process is very diverse, and researchers only exploited counting methods used by people from different cultures. They revealed that their team will be carrying out a massive survey to gather more information about this method of finger counting around the world.

“We know very little about the diversity of this process. In fact, we can’t imagine how much of a difference it will make, ”she said.

Scientists like Bender say there is still a lot to learn about the relationship between language learning and gestures.

“Children who grow up in different backgrounds learn to count numbers. Is it exciting to see what the intellectual implications are? “Said Bender.

Hundreds of thousands of years ago, our ancestors invented and developed various counting methods, Bender said.

Not only can you tell us where you are in the world, but you can also find out how we understand the concept of numbers through the finger counting process. It sounds easy when you count one, two, three in the hands, but it’s not that easy.

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