On the Subject of Feature Cryptography

/ju/ /θɔt/ /fəʊnɛtɪk/ /spɛlɪŋ/ /wɒz/ /səpəʊzd/ /tu/ /bi/ /izɪə/ /tu/ /rid/? /ju/ /θɔt/ /rɒŋ/.

Displayed on the screen is an excerpt from the text on the following pages. The excerpt may begin and/or end mid-sentence and cross between paragraphs. The excerpt is written in featural phonetic glyphs.

Each glyph consists of three features that combine to form a complete description of the sound the glyph represents.
  • The top half of the glyph denotes the place of articulation.
  • The bottom half of the glyph denotes the manner of articalution.
  • The curved arcs at the centre of the glyph denote the voicing;
    voiced if present, voiceless if absent.


  • The top half of the glyph denotes the backness.
  • The bottom half of the glyph denotes the height.
  • The curved arcs at the centre of the glyph denote the length;
    long if present, short if absent.

Vowels and consonants have no features in common.

One of the words in the text is missing from the excerpt. Use the rotors to select features and press the [+] button to combine the features into a glyph and append it to the entry.
Pressing the [-] button removes the last glyph from the entry.
The missing word consists of 3 to 8 phonemes, once the entry consists of 3 or more glyphs, the submit button can be pressed.
If the submitted entry matches the phonetic spelling of the missing word, the module will solve.

Search the lookup table to identify the phoneticlly spelled excerpt from the module using the word lengths. Note: The word lengths may not be unique. Multiple excerpts may have the same pattern of word lengths. Non-unique word length patterns are shown in gray.

Identify the missing word from the excerpt, words are individually highlightable, and find any IPA characters in the excerpt that are identical to the characters in the missing word. This will help assemble the correct glyphs on the module. If you need to make a glyph that is not represented by another character of the excerpt, the glyph will have to be assembled from similar features of other characters from the excerpt, using the IPA tables on page 1.

Example: The glyph for representing the IPA character ð could be assembled from the top half of another Dental character (θ),
the center of another Voiced character (m n ŋ b d ʤ g v z ʒ h l r j w),
and the bottom of another Fricative character (f v θ s z ʃ ʒ h).

The possible glyphs that may show up on the module are shown below.
Note: The mapping from glyph halves to place, manner, backness, length, etc. is random for each module instance.