I've been trying to come up with a language for a science fiction book, and I came across 12480, which I think would make a good base for the language. The only problem is, I'd like a general idea of how it works, and it seems to be slightly complicated: 12480 Sample Text

Omniglot has links to websites that it says help, but they all appear to be deadlinks. Does anybody on this forum happen to know how it works?

  • 3
    You can use the WaybackMachine by archive.org to read web pages which are not there anymore, this snapshot is of 2006 and it lacks Flash and some other elements. In fact 12489 is just a set of encodings to write down numbers in hexadecimal form and encode your numerical or alphabetical data with them.
    – Yellow Sky
    Commented May 8 at 17:59
  • I put this in the languages stack exchange because nobody answers in the conlangs one.
    – Anonymous
    Commented May 8 at 18:47
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    Never mind, Conlangs SE seems to be a bit less active than Linguistics SE. Besides, this 12480 stuff looks quite old and discontinued, so there're not many chances it's known to lots of people here. Besides, it's really good luck for you the WaybackMachine has at least something about 12480, you can try to see if snapshots from other dates have more elements recorded. In the early 2000s there was quite an interesting conlang I liked, it was named Nova, it had its own conscript Nova Morphograph, but now I can't find anything at all about it however hard I search the web, everything is gone...
    – Yellow Sky
    Commented May 8 at 19:06

1 Answer 1


IPA Column

This seems to be the key to this delightful looking writing system! As for the subsystems, we note that Bubble Script and Four Line Script are simply graphic representations of binary numbers. Given that the author's website is down it would be very difficult to deduce exactly how he intended these scripts to be used.

The example texts themselves don't appear to be in English, or perhaps they are and there is some weird factor that is not made clear in the chart of correspondences itself.

Of note, his theory is that this is some kind of mixed alphanumeric system. Immediate red flags for me are barmy statements like "traditional writing systems ... are inferior" and "12480 ... allows ... optimal amount of representations" and "12480 is far more universal..." This strikes of 1990s era Auxlang supremacy, i.e., someone with an agenda to push.

That said, and without having access to any more than this chart and some very vague descriptive text, I would say that essentially what you could do is simply use his symbols (or symbols like them) to replace the IPA symbols:

The IPA column gives you the signs for the consonants and vowels and you'll them just read across to the appropriate other column for the actual script set you're using (dot, bubble, four line, etc). This site clarifies the boxes in the IPA column.

So, if you want to write "Anonymous" in Bubble Script, you'd need to sort out how you pronounce your name. I come up with [ʌnɑnɪmɜs]. Your vowellage may vary, which will cause you to spell your name differently. Then scan across the columns to see where each IPA symbol lands in the Bubble Script column!

enter image description here

This is definitely the Primitive Race Finds Arcane Artifact and Tries to Use It way of looking at this. The image you quoted seems to come from a work by David Peterson from 2006. Peterson as far as I know is still active in the glossopoetic community. You might try contacting the Language Creation Society to see if they can help with contact details for this writing system's creator, Bradley Tetzlaff.

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