[Localization] (Low priority, but important) Large numbers

Nicholas Bodley nbodley at speakeasy.net
Wed Jan 28 07:24:12 EST 2009

Translators should be aware that words for large numbers follow two  
different systems (and India has its own, still different system).

Please see the Wikipedia article on short and long scales:
<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Long_scale> will get you there.
(Also available in Català, Deutsch, Español, Français, Italiano, Latina,  
Nederlands, 日本語 (Japanese), Português, Русский (Russian), and 中文  

Be especially careful with "billion", "trillion", et cetera.

In general, India subdivides large numbers differently.
(Also available in Ελληνικά (Greek ("Hellenic")), Español, Français,  
Italiano, and Romani)

For instance,

   करोड़   [Hindi](Crore)	is written 1,00,00,000;

that is 10^7 = 10,000,000 (Ten million (short scale)).

(I edited one line from the table at the Wikipedia article.)

Please also note "lakh". (In the USA, just about nobody who is not aware  
of India's culture has ever heard of a crore or a lakh.)

In this system, large numbers are consistently separated every two digits,  
except for three digits at one thousand.
For instance, a neel (not in common use) is written 1,00,00,00,00,00,000,  
which is 10^13.

[For fun: A millihelen is the amount of beauty required to launch one  

Best regards,

Nicholas Bodley /|*|\ Waltham, Mass.
One can only wonder what
Srinivasa Ramanujan would have
contributed to the world had he lived longer.

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