The whole leat speak crazy has kind of faded away. I don't blame them, howewever. What started as a few simple numerical substituions exploded into an orgiastic bloom of complicated dialects.

This is actually quite a shame, because I think that leet-speak would be a great way to enhance online communication. What is needed, then, is a leet-speek foundation, the purpose of which would be to catalogue and study the language.

The question, however, is what dialect of leet should we choose from? I opt for a a simplistic approach. The ideal dialect of leet derives it's power, like all languages, from intelligibility. Therefore, the amount of substitution cipher employed should allow for cultural internet heritage, as well as understandability.

This particular dialect, therefore, is more subdued than many of the crazy forms that have recently come about. I find that one of the reasons for the death of leet was the over-the-top outrageousness of some flavors of leet.

In contrast, southern leet is far more conservative. The rules for this dialect follow:

Numerical Substitutions:

a -> 4
e -> 3
t -> 7
o -> 0
y -> j
i -> 1

Letter Substitutions:

ou -> 00
c -> k

Example Text:

j00 N33D 70 KH00S3 j00R G4M3S W1S3Ly, d00d!

Of course, having said all this, do with it what you wish.
leetspeak was never used in seriousness. It was always an in-joke in the programmer/hacker crowd that was used to mock "script-kiddies" and other people who were generally thought of as dumb.

If you were ever using it as an actual, serious means of typing, then you were one of the people on the butt end of the joke.
I liked H82BL8 as a number plate on a sports car.

Also B12B3 on a millionaire's car.

and WRXSUX on a General Motors V8 Utility. Not that I have anything against Subaru WRX's - I thought it was funny.
If anyone uses x-fire ( cross fire ) you can choose the language of "1337" instead of English or what ever language.
I heard that it was also used to bypass profanity filters and stuff, but that could be wrong.
@firedraco: That's possible, but I don't think there are many profanity filters on places hackers would tend to hang out (usenet, irc, etc)
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