Author Topic: Quipu Code  (Read 7280 times)

wizardcrafts

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Quipu Code
« on: July 18, 2010, 01:39:54 PM »
Asked by a Cub Leader to come to her Camp and do some secret writing and spy codes i suggested doing Quipu Knots. The problem is that no one knows how to read them. So i have written a code for using simple knots to write words and numbers on string attached to a main cord that can be easily read without having to memorise a new code. I use figure of eight and one, two or three turn overhand knots to indicate the letter or numbers. The twist is that the kids today already know how to do the TEXT thing. So I use the numbers 2 to 9 to indicate which of the phone pad keys is being used and then which of the three (or four) letters are needed. So to write ?CUB? then use 2 (for key 2-a-b-c) and three for the third letter (C). The next string has an 8 (for key 8-t-u-v) and then two for the second letter (U). the next string has a 2 (for key 2-a-b-c) and two for the second letter (B).
The beginning of the main cord is marked by a FO8 and the beginning of a string with a number is marked with a FO8, the break for the next word is also marked by a FO8 on the main cord.
So I am asking this forum if anyone else already done this or is this a good article for Knotting Matters? Lonnie Boggs

squarerigger

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Re: Quipu Code
« Reply #1 on: July 18, 2010, 04:52:27 PM »
Lonnie,

This would be an EXCELLENT article for Knotting Matters!  I feel sure our IGKT members will greatly appreciate the thought and the action of learning a new way of using knots and maybe this would even help others (archeologists etc.) to re-examine their past treatises on what the meaning of knots on a quipu represent.

Lindsey Philpott; Editor, Knotting Matters.

Rrok007

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Re: Quipu Code
« Reply #2 on: July 20, 2010, 01:16:32 AM »
If I remember correctly wasn't there a Central or Southern American culture that used knots as a means of counting?


I just think it's awesome that you've shown them how to adopt the system for text messaging.

Another suggetion you might want to consider is using Blood Knots, where the number of rings in the knot represents the letters.

DerekSmith

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Re: Quipu Code
« Reply #3 on: July 20, 2010, 01:59:48 PM »
@ Wizardcrafts,

What a wonderful idea, excellent stimulation for minds young and old alike.  And as for the concept of using the keypad coding - stroke of pure FO8  4,1  3,2  6,2  4,3  8,2  7,4  FO8

One question though that hopefully the young minds will raise - modern texting often mixes text characters with numbers to make quick words like gr8 or l8r meaning great and later.  How would you propose to embed numbers as numbers and numbers as pseudo text?

Would gr8 be something like FO8  4,1  7,3  8  FO8  ?

Another challenge would be to use binary instead of decimal.  It takes only five 'bits' to encode any one of the keypad letters, so gr8 would be 01101 11011 11100.  If we could come up with a way of 'tying' binary sequences like 01101 into a single knot then this would take only three knots and would be a means of teaching kids binary counting.

Derek

Rrok007

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Re: Quipu Code
« Reply #4 on: July 21, 2010, 02:41:57 PM »
Hehe... stimulating young AND old minds alike.

@Derek, when not use knots that can be doubled when tying? Natural tie would represent '0', doubled would represent '1'? Or use a combination of overhand knots. Natural overhand for '0', and add an extra twist for '1'.

Makes me wanna think about how something like this could be applied to sennets and chains, etc. Would be cool to be able to "hide a message" into a piece of ropework. Though I'm sure that it's probably been done in the past, some "secret technique" now lost to the ages.

Wow... now this has me thinking about ideas for stories and rpgs....

DerekSmith

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Re: Quipu Code
« Reply #5 on: July 21, 2010, 07:21:42 PM »
@ Rrok007

If you can crack it, then you could 'sign' your sennets, then kids (or even not so youngies) could read who tied it from the code tied into it.

Derek

Rrok007

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Re: Quipu Code
« Reply #6 on: July 22, 2010, 12:47:47 AM »
EXACTLY!! Or have decorative items with all kinds of short messages or phrases hidden into them. Kind of like the hobo codes.

Lasse_C

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Re: Quipu Code
« Reply #7 on: July 27, 2010, 11:42:40 PM »
So I am asking this forum if anyone else already done this or is this a good article for Knotting Matters? Lonnie Boggs

If you have not written the article yet - DO IT!
I for one would welcome it. Old principle, adapted to new technology, and an entirely novel idea. Just excellent!  ;D

It would also do something you can not underestimate the importance of: Doing things that make kids think knotting is cool!

Go for it!!!

Lasse C

Rrok007

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Re: Quipu Code
« Reply #8 on: July 28, 2010, 04:36:01 PM »

It would also do something you can not underestimate the importance of: Doing things that make kids think knotting is cool!

Go for it!!!

Lasse C

Too true mate. In fact me and the roomie were visiting friends over the weekend and I happened to have DP's Handbook of Knots laying on the table. Their daughter started flipping through the book and then asked where she could get a copy.

struktor

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Re: Quipu Code
« Reply #9 on: January 03, 2011, 01:24:57 PM »
http://www.archive.org/details/cu31924014519940

AN ALPHABET OF KNOTS /99 (111)/

Struktor

Takler

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Re: Quipu Code
« Reply #10 on: January 03, 2011, 10:33:57 PM »
Excellent find

thanks

« Last Edit: January 03, 2011, 10:34:31 PM by Takler »
Marcin
Szczecin, Poland

rdmiller3

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Re: Quipu Code
« Reply #11 on: September 12, 2011, 08:40:33 PM »
I'd recommend using only two or three knots per character.  They would be multi-turn overhand knots, 1-4 turns, representing row, column and letter (if needed).

Numbers would be represented by two knots:
1=11, 2=12, 3=13
4=21, 5=22, 6=23
7=31, 8=32, 9=33
*=41, 0=42, #=43

Letters would get take three knots:
a=121, b=122, c=123
d=131, e=132, f=133
g=211, h=212, i=213
...
p=311, q=312, r=313, s=314
etc.
Use the Zero button for "space" (421).

Or if the scout knows Morse code, use single and triple overhand knots to represent "dits" and "dahs".
« Last Edit: September 12, 2011, 09:55:26 PM by rdmiller3 »

Rrok007

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Re: Quipu Code
« Reply #12 on: September 13, 2011, 05:47:49 PM »
Of course this all gets so much more interesting when locals adapt it to local languages with different alphabet lengths.