What xkcd is getting at with the latest comic is about syntax and semantics. I'll show you the syntax below, but as far as meaning is concerned, the point is that cell phone numbers have almost no semantics. The area code part (the first three digits) used to function as a locational marker when phones were in fixed locations in houses, but since Americans not only tend to move every three years or so but they now take phone numbers with them, and cell phone universality only really began to pick up in America five to ten years ago, it really does tend to reflect a former abode. My cool son Calvin, for example, has a number which implies that he lives in Oakland, California; he doesn't, he does his video game programming in the Pacific North West.
And the rest of the number, the other seven digits? Space enough there for some real personal information, but it is not used. It functions merely as arbitrary material to distinguish one cell phone's location point in the information universe from all the others.
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