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Marain is the Culture's shared language. Marain was designed to "appeal to poets, pedants, engineers and programmers". [...] The symbols of the Marain alphabet can be displayed in three-by-three grids of binary dots and thus correspond to nine-bit wide binary numbers.
Marain itself is also open to encryption and dialect-specific implementations for different parts of the Culture. M1 is basic Nonary Marain, the three-by-three grid. All Culture citizens can communicate in this variant. Other variants include M8 through M16, which are encrypted by various degrees, and are typically used by the Contact Section. Higher level encryptions exist, the highest of these being M32. M32 and lower level encrypted signals are the province of Special Circumstances.
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