Let us map all combinations of letters ( both valid words and gibberish) by a single criterion:
1st letter and all other appearances of that letter will be replaced by a digit 1, the first letter distinct from the 1st will be replaced by 2 , and so will be all other appearances of that letter , etc

Thus onion => 12312, queue => 12323, coffee => ¨ 123344 etc.

Clearly both "clue" and "ship" will be represented by a number 1234 while both "will" and "bass" by 1233.

Let us denote by a(k) the number of possible numbers of k digits.

Then a(1)=1; a(2)=2; a(3)=5 etc

1. Provide sample valid words for 1234512 and 123242526272.

2. List all the possible numbers for 4-letter combinations of letters (both valid and unvalid words).

3. Evaluate a(4), a(5), a(6).

4. Find a formula (either recursive or direct) for a(k).