bit

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Bit

The smallest unit of information a computer can hold in its memory. A bit is always represented as a 0 or a 1 in binary code. The word is a contraction of "binary digit."

bit

a digit which takes the value zero or one and which can therefore be represented electronically by an off/on switch in a COMPUTER. Computers use groups of bits to represent numbers or letters for storage, transmission and processing of numerical or alphabetical data. Specifically, computers use various off/on permutations of eight bits to represent all numbers, letters and punctuation characters. Most computers use multiples of eight bits to handle data in this way and various eight-bit, sixteen-bit and thirty-two bit machines are available, the larger ones generally being able to process data faster.
References in periodicals archive ?
contents steve mellish Top tips for the week ahead 2 off the bit Racing & Football at Donny 3 between the lines Andrew Mount 4 GET IT READY
steve mellish His top tips for the week ahead 2 off the bit Grand National tweaks a good thing 3 between the lines Mounty's looking for an angle 4 training centres Whispers from the gallops 18 trainer file Marcus Tregoning 6 focus Last week's eye-catchers 7 midweek racing Best bets for Tuesday through to Friday 8 greyhounds Dave Clark's hot dogsDave Clark's hot dogs 19 by the numbers Betfred Cambridgeshire 15 top of the form The latest chart update 23 time test Mark Nelson's speed figures 11 GET IT READY
com/shopping Jargon-buster On the bit / off the bit Also known as being on or off the bridle, this relates to how well a horse is travelling during a race.