The International Morse code officially gains a new character on May 3.

That’s when the now-familiar “@” symbol joins the Morse lexicon as the

letters “AC” run together (.–.-.). Known as the “commercial at” or

“commat,” the @ symbol never rose to the level of usage that demanded a

unique Morse character until it gained currency as a critical component of

e-mail addresses during the past decade or so.

Last December, the International Telecommunication Union

Radiocommunication Sector (ITU-R) Study Group 8 agreed on the wording of a

Draft New Recommendation ITU-R M.[MORSE] that specified the international

Morse code character set and transmission procedures and included the new

Morse code character.

The pending change has attracted some attentioNn in the media, including

mentions on National Public Radio’s All Things Considered and in The New

York Times.

It took the ITU ten years to recognize the increased status of the “@” symbol and actually create a Morse Code sequence of dots and dashes for it ! Now you can sleep better at night knowing the internet must be here to stay since the ITU waited 10 years just to be sure it was for real ! — zzb