The other day, someone found my blog from google.bg. Rather than think, “Oh, that’s Bulgarian Google. I know someone who is moving to Bulgaria,” the first thought that I had was, “Hey, lowercase ‘bg’ has a rotational ambigram equivalent!” For those of you that are not typeface junkies and haven’t read Angels and Demons, an ambigram is a word that, when written down, has some symmetry. It can be mirror symmetry, like “MOM”, where the left side is the mirror image of the right, or “BOID”, where the top is the mirror image of the bottom. Or it can be rotational, where the word reads the same way if you rotate it 180°. What follows is all about rotational ambigrams.
So I challenged myself to figure out what the rotational ambigram of “bg” was without rotating a piece of paper. I’m rather disappointed to say that, although my brain had immediately recognized that there was one, I went though several guesses involving “p” and “d” before figuring it out. The answer, is, of course, “6q”. And it still took me another hour to realize that “bg” is just a slight variation on the most famous numerical rotational ambigram of all.
From here, I started wondering what rotational ambigram internet domains were available. I thought of suggesting to my Bulgaria-bound friend that he should try to register 6q.bg when he gets there and meets the requirements for getting a country-specific domain. When I was thinking about other domain suffixes with rotational possibilities (the common .org, .com, and .net suffixes don’t work), I realized that, if capital letters were used, Spain’s suffix would work!
I checked, though, and Spain’s domain registrar does not allow two-letter domains, so I can’t register s3.es. Of course any rotationally symmetrical letter can be added in there. Unfortunately, I’ve been unable to come up with any actual words that make sense. S3POd.ES? S3Z.ES? And yes, X works, too.
I just thought I’d share some of these incredibly nerdy thoughts that I have occasionally.