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What is Binary System? and how it's communicate with computers?

edited December 2011 in About Forum
Friends ...I just need a little help ...Can u help me please !! If u knows something please answer ! share with me please .

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  • Registered Users
    I think you have to clarify the second part of the question. it's unclear what you mean. But i will try to guess and tell as much as i know (or googled :P).

    Binary or any numeral systems(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Numeral_system) is a way of representing numbers of a given set using systems so that it's consistent (and thus can communicate with other humans).

    To put it simpler, it's a way to group things. Now imagine you start counting from 0. 0,1,2,3...9. when you get to 10, what you are doing is to reuse the existing symbols. 10 meaning 1 group of 10 items or symbols,using position as a way to express larger numbers so that our brains can digest.

    I think the easiest way to think about why numeral systems were developed in the first place is to imagine you are in a deserted island. You are waiting for the rescue ship to arrive and you want to know how many days have passed. Well you will probably do something like this(http://www.sciencephoto.com/image/222393/530wm/H3000139-Scratches_in_a_wall_for_counting_time-SPL.jpg). I am sure everyone is familiar with it. What's happening here is you are encoding the count of items in a meaningful way for the brain to process. An alternative is to have uniform scratches on the wall(or tree), which after certain number of days will stop making sense. So in the image, someone is doing an octal system.

    Now why binary for computers? why not other systems? To understand why, imagine building a decimal based system. At the physical level, what we have are electrical components. But those things are pretty variable. Say for voltage, 5 volt usually means +- 0.05 or something, depending on the quality of the component used. But the error rate isn't so big so that you won't ever see 4 volt instead of 5. So that seems like a good way to start building a computer. A consistent physical universe and components that we can mass produce. To be safe, let's put our voltage range from 0-45 volt. So you have

    0 volt = 0 (why not 0-5? is because it will save power using a totally off state)
    >0-5 = 1
    6-10 = 2
    11-15 = 3
    ..
    ..
    ..
    41-45 = 9

    Now that's looking good!. The next step is to build yet another set of circuits to differentiate between those voltage ranges. But more circuits equate more material equate more money! AND our understanding of electrical and physical laws isn't so perfect that we will be totally error free detecting all those states reliably(if you ask why not? because its not that we cannot but it will cost more! We do not yet now how to build it cheaper so that it will enter consumer markets).

    Now the alternative? The binary system! Only two states. there's voltage and there's none. That radically reduce the amount of material needed and consequently less costly. Nothing else can be cheaper. And that's why the binary system in computing.

    But this may change if there's a breakthrough in quantum computers and they can be mass produced to work at room temperatures. Apparently, they are best used with some other numeral systems(grouping of 5 or quinary, or more). But I dunno enough of quantum physics to explain this lol.

    Anyway, i just wrote it off and dint re-read it. if any part of doesn't make sense, pls ask :D
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