Leet SpeakReference > Mathematics > Codes and Secret Messages
Leet Speak (also known as 1337 sp34k) is a code which was common a few years ago, but is quickly losing popularity - something for which I am personally very glad!
The term 'leet' comes from the word 'elite', which means "part of a special group". The special group was people who were very advanced computer users, message board posters, and gamers. They used this form of writing as a way of showing they were part of the "in" group.
Ironically, "newbies" (people new to computer use) started using this code as a way of showing that they were part of the "in" group as well, until now, the tables have been turned, and most serious computer users look on people who use leet speak as being "newbies" or immature.
Isn't that funny?
Well, let me tell you how l33t 5p34k works. It's very simple. You just take letters in your message and replace them with numbers or symbols that look similar. For example, the letter S could be written either as a dollar sign, or as a number 5. The letter A could be written as a number 4, and the letter E could be written as a three (backwards E).
Simple, right? And even if you aren't familiar with leet speak, you can still read it, if you study the text carefully.
There are lots of leet speak translators, or leet speak generators out there. So I'm just going to put asimple one on this page. If you want a more complex one, just poke around on the internet - you'll find one!
Also...did you know, my favorite search engine,google.com, lets you display your search results in leet speak? It's true! Maybe you should check it out sometime.
Educators can get a free membership simply by sharing an original lesson plan on our Articles for Educators page!