4 Letter IP AddressesEverything on the Internet has an IP address. Normally they're displayed as dotted quads like 18.104.22.168 or 22.214.171.124. But deep down they're just 4 bytes and some of them would actually be human readable if you pulled them into a text editor. 126.96.36.199 would come out as "ABCD".
The good news is that so many addresses are in use there's an excellent chance somebody has LAST, ZING, PERT or MSFT as their IP address. Try some words in the box below click on the link to see if it is used and where it might be.
I'm sure you have your favorite 4 letter words, but the best one I've found is all spaces (188.8.131.52) which lands you in the wide open spaces of Kansas (at the time of this writing, at least).
Fun FactsBecause of the way Internet addresses are handled, words that start the same are likely to be near each other. SOAP and SOUP could be close together and the chances are even better that if you look for BEEF, BEER will be nearby.
We really are running out of Internet addresses. But we'll either make do or somehow move to version 6 addresses which give us 16 letter words. Sadly, the chances of interesting phrases popping up is not good.
Nevertheless, should you acquire an address, try and get a good one. It's the ultimate double-secret personalized internet plate.
Somebody with real gumption needs to make some kind of Google maps mashup so we can easily see where the words are rather that picking them off one at a time.
Technical DetailsShort words get padded with spaces to make up 4 letters. In these heady days of Unicode and multibyte characters sets many letters will have a code bigger than 255. So I take each character code mod 256 to make up the IP address. These means there are way more 4 "letter" words than IP addresses but that's OK.
George Phillips, November 9, 2010, george -at- 48k.ca