# Alphabets

In this lesson we will learn about symbols or letters that make up an alphabet, and see that the meaning that we give symbols can be changed. This is important because later in this course we will be learning about two different number systems called Binary and Hexadecimal, and they use symbols differently from Decimal numbers.

Alphabets are a set of symbols used for many written languages https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alphabet . In English we call these symbols letters, and there are 26 of them. Other languages may have more or less symbols/letters. For English, symbols do not have any specific meaning. For example, the ‘u’ in ‘result‘ does not have any meaning, but the 6 symbols together are a word, and it has a meaning that is agreed upon, and is described in an English dictionary. If we jumble up the symbols ‘rustle‘, we still have the exact same symbols, but the different order gives a different word with a different meaning. If we leave a symbol out, ‘reult’ does not have any meaning at all. (for some words, leaving out a symbol creates a different word with a different meaning)

In our new SillyDecimal alphabet each symbol is replacing the traditional symbol we use to represent the quantities from 0 to 9. The following table shows you the two symbol sets:

 Decimal 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 SillyDecimal G H Q 9 \$ K @ A B C

So K is a replacement for 5, and A is a replacement for 7. K+A is the same as 5+7, which equals 12 with the normal Decimal alphabet. What about in the SillyDecimal system. the answer has the same value. The ‘1’ in the answer 12 is ‘H’ in SillyDecimal, and the ‘2’ is ‘Q’ so the complete answer is ‘HQ’