Bits, Bytes, and Representation of Information

Bits, Bytes, and Representation of Information


  • Computers are digital processors: stores and process information (numbers basically).
  • Computers represent information in bits. It it the most elemental way to represent digital informations. (0 or 1) (Binary Base: 2,10,16)
  • Groups of bits represent larger things. (Anything from numbers to movies, programs, etc.)
  • Analog versus digital. Analog: convey the idea of values that change as something changes in the system. Digital: discrete values, there are only a fixed number of values, it’s either on or off.
  • Quote: “There are only 10 kinds of people in the world those who understand binary numbers and those who don’t.”
  • It is much easier to make a device that only have two state than device that have more states. It also helps to improve the understanding of how numbers works in base 10, an example of quantitative reasoning.


This video explains how bits works, for example in base 2, the number five would be written as 101, and six would be 110, and goes on. In base 16, it adds A to F to represent numbers.

What’s in a Computer?

A computer is a device or machine that performs process, calculations and operations based on instructions provided by a software (operating system, software applications) or hardware (CPU, memory, storage) program. Typically, there are two parts that made up a computer, software and hardware. It helps and support the technology to function in our everyday life.

  • CPU: The processor or central processing unit is the “brain” or a computer. It does calculations, move data around, and controls the operation of all the program. The larger the number (GHz) is, the faster the speed is.
  • RAM: The primary memory or random access memory stores information that is in active use by the processor.
  • Secondary storage: Holds information even when the power is turned off.
  • Moore’s law: the number of transistor would approximately doubled every year.
  • The architecture of a computer has not changed since 1940s.


This video explains what exactly is a computer and how it function. I found interesting that all the program is function by two numbers 0 and 1. These two numbers made up the digital world we are in today.