I've called this 'Reading by numbers' to echo the simpler method of creating a picture 'painting by numbers'! Exchanging the letters of your name (or that of others)for specific numbers, and adding them together with your date of birth can offer strangely accurate readings...

Everything in life, everything that exists, is founded on calculation, is subject to measure and depends on numbers. Human beings have three basic constituents, body, mind and spirit, inhabiting a physical world most obviously divided into two's - day and night, land and sea, negatives and positives, light and dark...
Every aspect of physical existence is divided and divided again into countless contributory segments, right down to the smallest sub atomic particles.
The numbers we all take for granted - 0 to 9 - were invented in India by Hindu sages at a time when Greek and Hebrew scholars used the sequence of letters in their alphabet to double as numbers. These were 1-800 and seen by ancient metaphysicians as expressions of the sacred structure of the universe.
The Roman alphabet spread with the legions throughout the Mediterranean and into Europe. The numerals they used, although taken from their alphabet, were at least separately used from their letters, but hardly lent themselves to scientific calculation - or mystical deliberations! Fortunately, the Arabs had adopted the even more ancient Hindu system, and as trade increased for them with Europe in the middle ages, so that superbly devised Hindu system prevailed of necessity! People still call our numbers 'Arabic' but they should actually be designated, as the Arabs themselves called them, Hindustani numerals.
Now we come to the correlation between letters and numbers - to recreate a correspondence table in the Greek and Hebrew mystical tradition, with a nod at the Romans who also used specific letters as numerals...
A numerical value was given to each letter of the Roman alphabet and that occurrence is generally attributed to Pythagoras. Although he is thought of as a mathematician (who hasn't had to learn his theorem?)he was better known in his own time as the founder of a religious philosophy, Pythagoreanism, that owed much to that same eastern mysticism whence came our modern 0 to 9!
Here is the table that juxtaposes those numbers to our Roman 'alphabet' (from the Hebrew aleph-bet or Greek alpha-beta) and indicates how you can work out your reading number, with some possible interpretations I have made for that outcome.

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

A B C D E F G H I

J K L M N O P Q R

S T U V W X Y Z


Your 'Soul' number is your day of birth reduced to a single digit as in 12=1+2=3.
Your 'Fate' number is the sum of your date of birth as in 12.04.1947 = 1+2+4+1+9+4+7=28=2+8=10=1.
Your 'Name' number is calculated by adding the alphabet code numbers for your name e.g Ian Smith - 9+1+5+1+4+9+2+8=39=3+9=12=1+2=3 to your
'Fate' number to give your 'Goal' number 1+3=4
It's considered that the goal number gives you an indication of your strengths and weaknesses - something to ponder, something to work on, to develop perhaps for the future. The 'Fate' number may indicate future possibilities, your 'Name' number, personality traits...
You may also be interested to note the planets associated with your 'Goal' number
1) SUN
An individualist, capable, a good friend could take responsibility but you can be intolerant and stubborn - new paths could open up.
2) MOON
You are intuitive, have good links with spiritual people, don't like the ordinary or average, you aim high have a balanced view - you may have more of a problem than usual making a decision - should turn out for the best.
3) MARS
You are very creative and demonstrative, people tend to ask your opinion, your imagination sometimes gets the better of you, you can be dynamic once you get going. Music will be important.
4) MERCURY
You are sensitive to the season, have instincts you should trust, you are dependable as a friend - sometimes feel unappreciated - more happiness is on the horizon.
5)JUPITER
You are quite sensible, like the teaching role, face up to challenges, learn from experience and impatient with those who don't, like comfort and more of that to come.
6) VENUS/URANUS
You are well connected to the spiritual lifestyle, had to overcome difficulties to get where you are now, study/learning is important - you have a possibly untapped practical side that will be useful to others, your perception is good.
7) SATURN
You have endurance, wisdom and ability to balance different parts of your life don't suffer fools gladly but mask that with kindness - there should be an outlet for your abilities soon.
8) MOON (North Node)
You have the ability to instil confidence and are very aware of right and wrong, you have a courageous streak and could show the way to others - your skills will come in useful both for you and friends who find you loyal and true.
9)MOON (South Node)
You have the ability to understand, to be sympathetic and be of practical help, you always try to help others, sometimes not appreciated, but you can rise above it and make good progress - things look brighter ahead.
The person's character considered most likely to be inherently portrayed according to their numbers:
1) The Independent
2)The Peace Maker
3) The Enthusiast
4) The Capable
5) The Explorer
6) The Seeker
7) The Philosopher
8) The Decision Maker
9) The Dreamer

I do hope that you've enjoyed working out your own or another's special number and accompanying reading. If you are a psychic adept you may naturally expand on the basic reading.On a general note, there are many learned books on the subject of numerology should you wish to pursue a more in-depth study! Meanwhile, have fun.