Recently I read that a domain investor was looking for a website which can translate a number to Pinyin. If possible, he would also like the website to provide English description. Such service would be tremendously helpful to investors when acquiring numeric domains.
Unfortunately, I don’t know if such website exists. In fact, numbers have no intrinsic Chinese meanings. You cannot find Pinyin words for a number. However, some numbers do rhyme with Pinyin words. In other words, when you pronounce a number in Chinese, sometimes it sounds like a Chinese phrase.
A good example is 1688.com, Alibaba’s business-to-business wholesale marketplace. What does 1688 mean? Well, when you say “1688” in Chinese, it sounds like the Pinyin phrase Yi Lu Fa Fa (一路发发 = making a fortune all the way). When you buy or sell on 1688.com, you can make a fortune all the way. So, now that 1688 has been given a good meaning, it is very easy for 1688 users to remember.
Once again, I must emphasize that not every number can be given a Chinese meaning. While I can create a meaning for every 1- and 2-digit number, the task becomes increasing difficult when it comes to 3-digit, 4-digit, or longer numbers. It would be wonderful if someone could start a numeric domain project on the internet, set the maximum of digits, and invite volunteers to find meaningful numbers and enter them into this global database.
Meanwhile, if you want to find out the “meaning” of number, just ask a Chinese friend. Try to limit it to 4 digits or less. The longer the number, the less likely it’ll have any created meaning.
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