Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 91.djvu/967

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Popular Science Monthly

��951

��cannot convince the right trio that "W.G." was the greatest cricketer the world has ever known. We, having no doubts about

���Fig. 5. Three more letters of the alphabet spelled out by the men; these are F, L, Y

the fact, take the chance of identifying the late champion with the Morse initials, though he would not have thought we knew much about cricket if we had only allowed him four stumps and two balls

( . . ) for a country match.

The pantomine is here rudely interrupted by the sound of a buzzing airship propeller, and, looking up, we descry a beautiful monoplane gracefully winging its way, heading straight for the summit of our pyramid, behind which it presently dis- appears. We remember this is the French aviator, De Vol Plane, attempting to win the £5,000 prize by making a circuit of the world, upside down, without descending once for gasoline, but in the midst of our speculations as to his chances of success we are recalled to the business in hand by a sudden shuffle on the part of our acrobatic friends. They have forgotten their cricket controversy and hastily thrown themselves into a curious group, as in Fig. 5, which seems to us just a horrid jumble of people, until Mr. Know-all, our Dragoman, ex-

���Fig. 6. The alphabet is completed by a quad- ruple group of men representing C, J, Q, Z

plains that the group represents the three letters FLY, which is appropriate enough under the circumstances, as we feel bound

��to admit. So we add those letters to our list.

Our dusky entertainers now complete the alphabet with a quadruple group, for which, to our chagrin, we are able to find no mnemonic peg whatever (Fig. 6), but which we are told represents the four letters C J Q Z , and I defy any man to make anything approaching an intelligible word out of that.

I conclude this article by drawing atten- tion to a very curious fact in connection with the Morse Code — viz., that in dis- tributing his symbols over the alphabet, Mr. Morse did not, in many cases, allocate

��LETTERS

IN ORDER OF FREQUENCY

�PRESENT CORRES- PONDING MORSE SYMBOLS

�LINES OF DEVER6ENCE

�IDEAL ALLOCA- TION IN ORDER OF

VALUE

�SHOWING WHERE PRESENT SYMBOLS 15 CORRECT

�E.

�.

� �.

�YES

�T

�—

� �—

�YES

�A

�—

� �••

�NO

�1

�••

� �—

�NO

�—

� �— .

�NO

�5

�...

� �...

�YES

�N

�—

� �

�NO

�R

�._.

� �.— .

�YES

�H

�....

� �....

�YES

�L

�— ..

� �..—

�NO

�D

�_..

� �— ..

�YES

�C

�— ._.

� �..._

�NO

�U

�.._

� �— ...

�NO

�F

�.. — .

� �.._.

�YES

�M

� �. — ..

�NO

�G

�.

� �.

�YES

�W

�.

� �.

�YES

�K

�— —

� �— .-.

�YES

�P

�. .

� �. .

�YES

�V

�...—

� �_.-_.

�NO

�Y

�_._ —

� �..

�NO

�B

�— ...

� �

�NO

�X

�— ..—

� �— ..—

�YES

�.—

� �.—

�YES

�J

�._

� �.___

�YES

�Z

�— — ..

� �— —

�NO

��Table or chart showing the distribution of Morse signals and their ideal allocation

the shortest symbols to the most frequently used letters, the amount of divergence from the ideal distribution being shown in the diagram above.

Counting the dot as 1 and the dash as 3, we get a specific time-value for each Morse signal, and it will be seen that column four of the diagram represents the correct progressive order of the ideal Morse alphabet, beginning with a single dot valued at 1 and ending with a symbol composed of a dot and three dashes valued at 7. Thus the letter E, which is by far the

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