rhythmIn computer-ese, many punctuation marks have special names. This makes it easier for geeks to read aloud certain computer languages.

For example, the number sign or pound character (“#”) is pronounced “crunch” and the exclamation point (“!”) is a “bang” so “#!/bin/sh” would be read aloud as “crunch bang slash bin slash s h”.

Unfortunately, that one’s not musically rhythmic because all the symbols have only one syllable. To get more interesting rhythms, we need some with two, three or more syllables. Here are some more symbols and their geek names.


# Crunch
! Bang
< Waka or Norkie
> Waka or Norkie (again)
* Splat
` Back-Tick
^ Hat

Other characters retain their normal names so “&” is still pronounced “Ampersand” (musically triplets). And a blank would be a pause. Letters, numbers and words are pronounced normally.

Combine the funny character names and, as you wish, words, numbers and blanks (pauses). For example,

“<>*!<>*!” is pronounced “Waka waka splat bang Waka waka splat bang.”

Hear the rhythm starting to develop?

Here’s one that’s a little more complicated. Can you say it? (This one has a little syncopation to it.)


Or how about this one? (Works better with “Waka” instead of “Norkie”.) Watch out for the spaces (pauses)!

“<*ding <*dong <<!yourDingDong”

Ok, your turn.

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