I need to express a list of integers in a book, all falling between 1 and about 50,000, but I have limited space to print them. For e.g. "300009" takes up 6 characters. Put simply, I need to save paper. I'd like to either find a way to reduce the number of characters needed to express the numbers or replace the numbers with something that takes less horizontal or vertical space, but still represents the information reasonably well.
- If the numbers are above 100, their exact value is unimportant. I only need to display a ballpark figure, i.e., to say that the value is somewhere between 100 and 199, 200 and 299, ... 1000 and 1999, 2000 and 2999, ... 10000 and 19999, ... 100000 and 199999, etc. Unfortunately, I find this does not seem to help me, as rounding the number up or down doesn't reduce the number of characters used and displaying the range for "300009" takes up 13 characters (300000-399999), which is considerably longer.
- I have tried looking at using other bases, but these seem to make the numbers unreadable. The numbers should not require too much effort to understand.
- I explored various alternative numeral systems from other cultures (past and present), as these are not so difficult to learn, but could not find anything more condensed way to express "300009" or a ballpark range for this.
Does math notation provide any solution? Is there a short-hand notation which can express these kinds of ranges with fewer than 6 characters to express "300009"? Are there some other numeral systems I should consider?