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# 5.1. Representing Numbers in Different Bases

## Problem

You want to specify a value as a binary, octal, or hexadecimal number.

## Solution

Hexadecimal literals start with 0X or 0x (where the first character is a zero, not an “oh”), and octal literals start with 0 (again, zero, not “oh”). Binary numbers can’t be represented directly, but you can specify their octal or hexadecimal equivalent.

## Discussion

You can represent numbers in ActionScript using whichever format is most convenient, such as decimal or hexadecimal notation. For example, if you set the value of the `MovieClip` `._rotation` property, it is most convenient to use a decimal number:

`myMovieClip._rotation = 180;`

On the other hand, hexadecimal numbers are useful for specifying RGB colors. For example, you can set the RGB value for a `Color` object in hexadecimal notation (in this example, `0xF612AB` is a hex number representing a shade of pink):

```myColor = new Color(myMovieClip);
myColor.setRGB(0xF612AB);```

Any numeric literal starting with 0X or 0x is presumed to be a hexadecimal number (a.k.a. `hex` or base-16). Allowable digits in a hexadecimal number are 0-9 and A-F (both uppercase and lowercase letters are allowed).

Any numeric literal starting with 0, but not 0x or 0X, is presumed to be an `octal number` (a.k.a. base-8). Allowable digits in an octal number are 0-7. For example, `0777` is an octal number. Most developers don’t ever use octal numbers in ActionScript.

The only digits allowed in `binary numbers` (a.k.a. base-2) are 0 and 1. Although ...

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