I think you were right the first time. A tally system and Roman numerals
do provide a way to express non-zero integer values, but neither
supports what we'd be willing to accept as a complete set of arithmetic
Consider how you might represent pi, or even just 1/2 with either
notation. I don't even want to think about calculating the square root
of II (or //).
A base n system provides a set of digits , so a base 1 system
could only provide the digit 0. As soon as you attempt to increment a
zero value you'd find yourself in the predicament of propagating a carry
But it is kinda handy to toss (like a petard) into discussions of number
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