# Information Systems for Business and Beyond (2019)

The rightmost column represents 2 0 or units (1). The next column from the left represents 2 1 twos or (2). The third column represents 2 2 or (4) and the fourth column represents 2 3 or (8). Expanding the table above, you can see how the decimal number 15 is converted to 1111 in binary as follows:

Two cubed Two

Two Units squared 2 3 2 2 2 1 2 0 1 1 1 1 8 4 2 1

8 + 4 + 2 + 1 = 15 Understanding binary is important because it helps us understand how computers store and transmit data. A “bit” is the lowest level of data storage, stored as either a one or a zero. If a computer wants to communicate the number 15, it would need to send 1111 in binary (as shown above). This is four bits of data since four digits are needed. A “byte” is 8 bits. If a computer wanted to transmit the number 15 in a byte, it would send 00001111. The highest number that can be sent in a byte is 255, which is 11111111, which is equal to 2 7 + 2 6 + 2 5 + 2 4 + 2 3 + 2 2 + 2 1 + 2 0 . As the capacities of digital devices grew, new terms were developed to identify the capacities of processors, memory, and disk storage space. Prefixes were applied to the word byte to represent different orders of magnitude. Since these are digital specifications, the prefixes were originally meant to represent multiples of 1024 (which is 2 10 ), but have more recently been rounded for the sake of simplicity to mean multiples of 1000, as shown in the table below: Information Systems for Business and Beyond (2019) pg. 25