You're about to get a glimpse of the way the Mind of Kevin Bowman works. This is also an example of why people who have ADD tendencies should stay away from the internet.
For reasons I can't remember, I was talking with a work mate about strange audio processesing algorithms when I recalled seeing a farcical processing device on the internet that named all of the controls and such with palindromes. A quick search found the device in question to be the palindrometer (found here). Then I remembered hearing a satirical skit on NPR (my buddy Dave calls it National Proletariat Radio) that was an interview with a guy named Bob, who spoke entirely in palindromes. Of couse, this instigated a thourough search of the 'net for a transcript of that dialog. I did not find what I was looking for but did find several sites dedicated to palindromes and one site led me to another on which I discovered an intersting (to me) mathematical problem involving numerical palindromes (numbers like 12321).
So now I'm completely intrigued by this mathematical problem, which you can read about here. I started thinking about a related subject: what does it mean to "reverse a number"? And I discovered a couple of interesting things:
1) The absolute value of the difference of a number and it's reverse is a number evenly divisible by nine. This was really no surprise once I remembered the old accounting trick related to transposed digits (if the error is a multiple of 9, you've probably made a transposition error).
2) The result of dividing the difference mentioned above by 9 is often a palindrome! This was true for all of the numbers I first experimented with. My first experiments were with sequencial digits, like 123, 456, 987654, etc. I even tried 196 (196 - 691 / 9 = 55). However, I was able to find numbers that, when subtracted from thier reverse and divided by 9, did not result in a palindrome (72157 - 75127 / 9 = 330).
3) At least for some numbers, the process of "reverse and subtract" (and taking the absolute value) results in a palindrome. The number 196 "solves" in this case:
196 - 691 = 495
495 - 594 = 99
Subtraction is nothing more than adding with negative numbers. Perhaps this will open the door to generalizing the "reverse and add" process and help gain some understanding with the 196 problem. Or perhaps I've just found another way to waste a bunch of time.