Tess Jacobs wrote:I understand that octal numbers are not widely used in computing because they are not as efficient as hexadecimal numbers at converting values into bytes (8 bits). How do octal numbers compare to decimal numbers? Are decimal numbers preferred to octal numbers at converting values into bytes? For example, the byte 01100000 can be represented in decimal (base 10) by 2 digits 96 and in octal (base 8) by 3 digits 140. Does this mean that decimal numbers are more efficient than octal numbers at representing bytes?
Tess Jacobs wrote:Does this mean that decimal numbers are more efficient than octal numbers at representing bytes?
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Tess Jacobs wrote:How do octal numbers compare to decimal numbers?
Henry Wong wrote:The advantage of octal is that you can envision the bits better. Every digit is exactly three bits. And there is no way for a single bit change to affect two octal digits. This is not true for decimal, where certain bits can affect more than one digit.
Tess Jacobs wrote:Would this imply that octal numbers are more efficient at representing bytes than decimal numbers? The same way hexadecimal numbers are more efficient at representing bytes than octal numbers.
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Winston Gutkowski wrote:It really depends on what you mean by "efficient" and what you're looking at.
Tess Jacobs wrote:
As humans, we tend to use a number system that we find the most intuitive, but I'm trying to look at it from the computer's perspective. Since all data (hex, octal or decimal) eventually gets converted to binary, I’m trying to find out which conversion process is fastest (most efficient) from the computer's perspective, for example, since a hex digit represents 4 bits and each computer word is a multiple of 4 bits, I’m sure that the computer will find it very easy converting a hex number to binary. However, when dealing with decimal and octal numbers, I’m trying to find out which one the computer will find easiest to convert to binary.
Tess Jacobs wrote:As humans, we tend to use a number system that we find the most intuitive...
"Leadership is nature's way of removing morons from the productive flow"  Dogbert
Articles by Winston can be found here
Winston Gutkowski wrote:No we don't, we use base 10
Tess Jacobs wrote:How do octal numbers compare to decimal numbers?
Henry Wong wrote:The advantage of octal is that you can envision the bits better. Every digit is exactly three bits. And there is no way for a single bit change to affect two octal digits. This is not true for decimal, where certain bits can affect more than one digit.
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