Closely related to this question, but I couldn't find the answer to my particular question there.

I am interested in meaning of the following logogram which has appeared in the movie "Arrival":

Logogram from Arrival Logogram in film still

In the second image, we see a scene from the actual movie and next to it we see recognized "partial meanings" of the logogram, but I am curious what is its exact meaning.

For the record, I am interested in this particular logogram since it appears on a T-shirt, and I want what it says before I get the shirt.

  • 1
    Well, isn't the meaning a combination of elements? Seems more or less clear.
    – Mithoron
    Feb 19, 2017 at 2:10
  • 1
    “This would look boss on your lower back” Nov 11, 2022 at 17:30

3 Answers 3


The Wolfram people have also published all the logograms along with the code they used, on GitHub (you can download the source code as an archive along with images). Each .jpg file is signed, so I assume the signature is the meaning.

Ink logogram from the "Arrival" film

This particular diagram is named HepWritesRealTime1.jpg - I haven't the slightest idea what that means.

  • 1
    Thanks for the link! I'm afraid this doesn't exactly answer the question though.
    – Wojowu
    Feb 18, 2017 at 19:44
  • 1
    @Wojowu I'm aware of this as well, so I'm still digging. Sadly, of miriads of websites discussing this stuff, only precious few actually provide something original or relevant - others just re-post. That Wolfram code is the best thing we've got. I also checked the stream, and Christopher Wolfram doesn't explain the logogram there either. Feb 18, 2017 at 19:51

Per my answer here, around 30 of the logogram vocabulary words that were generated for the film have been revealed in The Art and Science of Arrival and on the WolframResearch Github repository.

Based on this, we can identify a couple of specific elements of the logogram 'sentence' you've pictured above.

enter image description here

  • Does the bump on the bottom left of "See Find Understand Think Query Ask Truth Land Perch Ground Hold Choose Pick Take Accept" look like the bottom bump on "Ship Grounded" to you too?
    – Malady
    Nov 11, 2022 at 14:55
  • @Malady - It does indeed. But which bit is ship and which bit is grounded?
    – Valorum
    Nov 11, 2022 at 15:04
  • Betting that "Ground(ed)" is related to the bump that appears on both these logograms of concern, at least? ... "Heptopod" and "Ship Grounded" seem to share the "Heptopod" segment, so "Ship" might not be the best translation, more "Heptopod Spacecraft" or something.
    – Malady
    Nov 11, 2022 at 15:35

Probably the "Partial Meanings" are actually fully accurate, because it's easier for the writing / programming that way.

Whether it means anything: "See Find Understand Think Query Ask Truth Land Perch Ground Hold Choose Pick Take Accept"

Seems like there's three concept segments: "See Find Understand Think Query Ask Truth", "Land Perch Ground", and "Hold Choose Pick Take Accept".

And the order presented isn't always the most understandable one. Language without beginning or end. "Accept Ground Truth" is a funny possible meaning.

If we take the implied subject of the speaker talking, then it's maybe [We] Accept [You] Ask [about] Landing.

Especially, from Valorum's answers, this logogram looks sorta like the Ship Grounded logogram, with the small bump looking like a match, at least, and "Land Ground Perch" are more verbs than nouns for locations.

  • Land Perch and Ground may also tie semantically to the first group, something along the lines of foundational ground truth from which to proceed in understanding. That is "Land Perch Ground" may not be about where to park the spaceship.
    – Lexible
    Nov 11, 2022 at 16:53

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