Bauds, Bits, Bytes and Codes—Getting Down to Basics

Computers communicate with each other using specialized codes made up of bits and bytes. A byte is a character that is made up of seven or eight bits. Computer disc capacity tends to be measured in bytes, but speeds on digital lines are measured in the number of bits transmitted per second.


Computers can “read” each other's on and off binary bits when these bits are arranged in a standard, predefined series of on and off bits. All English-language IBM and Macintosh personal computers use variations of the same type of codes. The main code, American Standard Code for Information Interchange (ASCII), is used when personal computers communicate over telephone lines. The international version ...

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