Last letter in your official number?

#1
Ive been out for 25 years now but one thing I never got round to asking is,

What does the letter at the end of your official number stand for?

I was D144***T.

Whats the T stand for please??

Cheers
 

McHammock

Lantern Swinger
#2
Believe it may have been a "checksum" to avoid typing incorrect numbers in computer systems. Each digit in number added/multiplied using little hidden formula& answer given as a letter.
type digit incorrectly & "checksum" does not tally.

Just a thought as I'm now in IT & we use checksums a lot for part stock numbers etc
 

Ratrat

Lantern Swinger
#3
McHammock said:
Believe it may have been a "checksum" to avoid typing incorrect numbers in computer systems. Each digit in number added/multiplied using little hidden formula& answer given as a letter.
type digit incorrectly & "checksum" does not tally.

Just a thought as I'm now in IT & we use checksums a lot for part stock numbers etc
Yes, I believe that you are right. When the RN first went over to computerised pay, HMS Centurion (as it was then called) used our Mech's Course at HMS Sultan as the guinea pig for the first trials in 69/70. The need for a "checksum" was explained to us during the briefing about the trial. So we were the first to get the additional digit on our Official (oops sorry) Service Number. We actually received two pay statements per month, one old fashioned and one computer generated.
 
#4
Yep - it's a checksum. No, I've forgotten the formula, despite writing the code for it.....! Seriously. I know is has something to do with not using all the letters in the alphabet, assigning a numeric value to them, and multiplying the numbers in your service number to come to a "remaindered" number. If I have a lucid flashback, I will post the exact answer!
 
#6
Nicks said:
Ive been out for 25 years now but one thing I never got round to asking is,

What does the letter at the end of your official number stand for?

I was D144806T.

Whats the T stand for please??

Cheers
:) Mine was P/092682X then they changed it to D/ why that, remember it causing great confusion at the time, and just out of interest what is the current O/No being issued to those poor unsuspecting boys.
 

sidon55

Lantern Swinger
#8
Would the first lot of letters have anything to do with Port Divisions (i.e C for Chatham, P for Pompey and D for Guss) as the old pre change did ? The change was before the port divs were abolished
 

Ratrat

Lantern Swinger
#9
sidon55 said:
Would the first lot of letters have anything to do with Port Divisions (i.e C for Chatham, P for Pompey and D for Guss) as the old pre change did ? The change was before the port divs were abolished
May I point my learnt friends to earlier threads and submissions about this very point - yes, you are right, it did signify your "Port" Division. I believe that the biggest change came when "Centurion" moved from Hazlemere to Gosport!
 
#12
Forgive me, but as I served shortly after Lord Nelson my prefix was C/JX followed by six numerals.

A word to the wise shipmates-Never, never give out your full service number.
 
#13
PompeySailor said:
Yep - it's a checksum. No, I've forgotten the formula, despite writing the code for it.....! Seriously. I know is has something to do with not using all the letters in the alphabet, assigning a numeric value to them, and multiplying the numbers in your service number to come to a "remaindered" number. If I have a lucid flashback, I will post the exact answer!
I never did work the code out - one day at BRNC we tried, easy as we all had consecutive numbers. My Service number ended 34S, my friend 35Q and another one 36L (i think). All the other numbers were the same, so it must be a fiendishly complicated checksum for the letters to be so random!
 
#15
Joined 1956

Didn't have anything on the end of the numbers till about 1966 when it got an X added after the six numbers .

I thought it was because I signed on for 22 years pensionable service.
 

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