Talk:Telegraph code

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Are you trying to crawl out of it?[edit]

  • BYOXO ("Are you trying to crawl out of it?")
  • LIOUY ("Why do you not answer my question?")
  • AYYLU ("Not clearly coded, repeat more clearly.")

Can someone find a reference for these? Some other things online say that BYOXO means "Are you trying to weasel out of our deal?", but they appear to be Wikipedia mirrors, so maybe it said that in a past version. "Crawl out of it" seems like a machine translation from the equivalent phrase in some other language. — Omegatron 00:14, 10 February 2007 (UTC)

I've wondered about that stuff, too. Googling 'telegraphy five letter groups' quickly found the Mother Lode and something contemporary. There are probably more, since I stopped looking after finding two good ones. The Morse code article is already pretty huge, but I'm thinking these references could open up a whole new section, or at least a rewritten paragraph or two. Maybe there should be an article on code books, referenced from Morse code. Anyway, some light has been shed on BYOXO and its cousins. Lou Sander 01:15, 10 February 2007 (UTC)
Definitely new article material. — Omegatron 00:37, 11 February 2007 (UTC)
Re: Adding this to the existing article--BYOXO? ;-) Yep, sounds like one to me. Then Morse code could just say "they sometimes used code books" (properly worded, of course), with a link to code books. Lou Sander 01:32, 11 February 2007 (UTC)
There were several different commercial codes in common use, many large companies used their own, and of course there were military codes too. They were used not only with telegraphy but also over public and private teletype networks. If wiki wants to be neutral one could just make up a few arbitrary assignments as examples, then link to the code books site for real ones. Jeh 23:42, 19 February 2007 (UTC)
I have moved the Commercial code discussion to the Telegraph code page, since this is more a part of historical telegraph practice than Morse code usage.Thomas H. White 00:41, 28 February 2007 (UTC)

I have replaced these with some real examples from some code books I own. I hope no-one minds :-) Hpengwyn 21:41, 22 August 2007 (UTC)

Telegraph code vs Commercial code[edit]

To me these are two different things. A telegraph code encodes a character into a series of signals, Morse for example. A commercial code encodes words and phrases into words either to save on transmission cost or to obscure the meaning.

There is in fact already an article on Commercial code although it contains less material on that subject than this article does. I suggest moving most of the material to the other article. Rees11 (talk) 18:49, 21 May 2009 (UTC)

I went ahead and moved the material, but it will need some cleanup. If this seems premature or a bad idea, feel free to undo and discuss here. Rees11 (talk) 18:56, 21 May 2009 (UTC)

I believe the phrase is 'citation needed' :-) I don't think things should be moved back, but of the 3 code books I have to hand two of them refer to telegraph or telegraphic code, and the third refers to telegraphic cipher. To be fair, one of them uses the term 'commercial telegraphic code' at one point Hpengwyn (talk) 21:26, 3 June 2009 (UTC)

I agree it's still not optimal. I don't think of Morse as being a "telegraph code." I don't care what it's called but I do think the 'commercial telegraphic code' should be all together in one article. Personally I think the current 'Telegraph code' article should just go away, because we've already got articles on Baudot code, Morse code, etc. Then 'commercial code' could be renamed to 'commercial telegraphic code' or even 'telegraph code' if that seems unambiguous. Or just left as it is. Rees11 (talk) 01:36, 4 June 2009 (UTC)

What is now left in the article ie Morse and Baudot etc are not 'Telegraphic Codes' as universally understood in the era of telegraphy - that meant phrase-to-word codes used primarily for reducing message length and therefore cost and which are covered in 'Commercial Codes' (which should be renamed). They are perhaps 'communication codes', but even so the word 'code' is misused. In cryptography transformations at the letter level (which Morse is) are 'ciphers/cyphers' and they generally do not compress the message length; transformations at the word level and above are 'codes'. Technically 'Morse Code' is not a code, it is unfortunate it was ever given that name. 109.144.213.106 (talk) 22:05, 30 June 2012 (UTC)

The Library of Congress subject heading is cipher and telegraph codes, and looking at the subheadings I see a few noncommercial instances (astronomy and meteorology, military codes also existed). Based on this google ngram I'd say that "commercial code" is too nonspecific even with the qualifier in the title, and that "telegraphic code" is probably our best bet.
I'll also note that there are 855 hits in google books for "morse code" + "telegraphic code", 379,000 for "morse code" and 79,300 for "telegraphic code" alone. That indicates Morse is probably not a "telegraphic code". I'll go ahead and do the move. Happy to revert if there are any objections. Lesser Cartographies (talk) 15:59, 7 June 2015 (UTC)