# What's the first "local" digit of your phone number?

Our landline numbers take the form (00) 12-34-5678, though this isn’t how we’d typically write them. You’ll usually see (00) 1234 5678.
00 is roughly the state, but there’s some grouping involved. 02 is New South Wales and the ACT, 03 is Victoria and Tasmania, 07 is Queensland, 08 is Western Australia, South Australia and the Northern Territory.
12 is the region, and this can cover a large area. I used to live in the (03) 51 area, which covered an area in excess of 144mi/230km.
34 is the town.
The OP seems to consider the region (12) to be the first part of the local number, in which case my answer to the OP is 5.

Fine! I can’t deal with this kind of pressure! My number is 513-662-3456. There! I feel so relieved.

I don’t want to know your locality!

The entire point is to get at the digit that could be anything. I want to see if it that is uniformly distributed or not.

And what makes you think your results will tell you that?

Well, the line number is the first and only part of the phone number that is not dependent on the locality, so in my case it would be 0.

Now that we’ve got that sorted out…

Same reason as any sampling wotzit.

It used to be easy around here. Generally, Troy phone numbers began with 2, Schenectady numbers began with 3, and Albany numbers began with 4. With cell phones, that’s no longer true.

Too complicated - didn’t vote.

So your samples are unbiased? Did you know that there are no US NPAs that begin with “1” or “0”? Did you consider that years ago, when letters were used for the first 2 numbers, that a bias might still exist? Or are you confused about what digit is the first “local” one, because, given your example, I am.

As another Friday night pursuit I highly recommend thumb twiddling.

Sorry, I did the wrong digit. To me, the first “local” number is the first digit of the prefix, because that’s the first number that can be different for different people living in the same town as me. I think of it as area code, local code, line number.

Well if that’s the case, change my vote to 9. :smack:

It’s the number your neighbor would dial to phone you, rather than someone from another county/state/country.

Which makes me wonder, are there any places that don’t have phone numbers in left to right regional to local order?

He’s twice specifically said he wants the two in a standard NANP (North American Numbering Plan (USA, Canada, parts of Mexico (although I think that Mexico may have dropped completely out of NANP)) number - 999-888-2111.

Although the advent of overlapping NPAs and number portability has changed some of the rules, it is the best choice for a definition of ‘first digit of a local number’, since the NXX/888 portion still generally relates to an area (actually, you’ll find that most of your neighbors at least share the first two digits of the NXX.

And, assuming the Dope is a random group of folks (and for number assignment, it probably is), I’d expect his NANP numbers to be randomly distributed. Possibly light on 0/1 - in my home town, we used to have 4-digit dialing, so no last-four would start with 0/1, since those still signaled in a desire for an operator or a long-distance call.

I don’t know how common that was (I’d guess not very), but it could have an affect.

But as someone pointed out above, that’s no longer a good indicator. I live in suburban Philadelphia. We have multiple “local” area codes. 215, 610, 484 and 267 are all local numbers. To dial my neighbor, I must dial ten digits, 610-555-1234. To dial my grandparents in Canada, I dial 11 digits, 1-343-555-3456. Highly populated areas with multiple area codes and even more exchanges do not fit the model.

You dial ten digits, not eleven (no, that’s not a Spinal Tap joke)? You don’t dial a “1” first?

Dialing the 1 makes it a long distance call, which I imagine will generally get you the “you don’t need to dial 1 to complete this call” message if you do it by accident. If you live in a city with an overlay, all calls need 10-digits, to differentiate between 646-455-1111 and 917-455-1111 (to use a NYC example).

The need to 10-digit dial all numbers was one of the major hurdles of getting people to accept overlays (as opposed to an area code split, which causes a different set of acceptance issues).

North American pay phones traditionally had line numbers of the form 90XX, 91XX, or 92XX. Long-distance operators knew this pattern so they could call a local operator in the destination city for a “coin check” to ensure that you weren’t placing a collect call to a pay phone where your friend was waiting. Obviously there aren’t many pay phone numbers any more, but in a large enough sample, the number of 9s would be slightly below other digits.

Why would that be a problem? Why couldn’t the recipient of the call pay for it if he had enough quarters, dimes and nickels?