________ February 27, 2015 ________

Learning Binary

I love codes.  I love puzzles.  And I was reading this book the other day (an MMARPG novel) with a bunch of geek stuff in it, and the main character had a t-shirt made up that had a message all binary.  Her geek crush claimed to be a code-breaker for a top government agency, and she didn’t believe him, so she asked him what her shirt said.  Which… okay, that’s just clever.  And what sucked?  Is that I don’t know binary, so I wouldn’t know what it said.  ((He read it right away, naturally.))

So then I was thinking… is binary hard to learn?  C’mon, it’s just a bunch of ‘0’s and ‘1’s, right?  How hard can it be?

When you’re blonde?  Pretty hard, actually.
((I cringe to admit it.))

Well, on the surface, anyhow.  I think I’ve got it, now.  Mostly thanks to this video:

space
Except that I don’t want to have to make a graph like that every time that I want to figure out a binary number.  So then I found a site that helps people learn to do binary on their fingers… which would be WAY better for me.  If I can get it.  It’s going to take some practice, methinks…

Binary Fingers

((click the big red words for the link))

By the way, counting this way is easy with the Inchworm song… and I even got the ’64’ and ‘128’ – thank you, 80s Commodore computers.  Gonna have to memorize the ‘256’ and ‘512’, though.  Don’t ask.  I told you… I’m blonde.

But these are all just numbers.  To code into letters, I had to go to another site, where I read this:

Letters on the other hand, are a bit more complicated. What you need to do, is give all the letters a number value. For example a=1, b=2, and c=3. To signify that something is a letter, and not a number, you put the code 0100 for a capital and 0110 for lower case. So the letter ‘A’, is the code 01000001, and a lower case ‘a’ is 01100001. To make a space you put the code 0010000 and to make a period you put the code 00101110.

Which didn’t make sense to me, until I found this handy decoder chart, that explains that ‘a’ doesn’t equal ‘1’, it actually equals ’65’. and that you don’t just add ‘0100’ to the front, it could be ‘0101’… just as lower case could be ‘0110’ OR ‘0111’.  Which is easier to understand if you look at this chart:

ASCII Alphabet Characters

Symbol Decimal Binary
A 65 01000001
B 66 01000010
C 67 01000011
D 68 01000100
E 69 01000101
F 70 01000110
G 71 01000111
H 72 01001000
I 73 01001001
J 74 01001010
K 75 01001011
L 76 01001100
M 77 01001101
N 78 01001110
O 79 01001111
P 80 01010000
Q 81 01010001
R 82 01010010
S 83 01010011
T 84 01010100
U 85 01010101
V 86 01010110
W 87 01010111
X 88 01011000
Y 89 01011001
Z 90 01011010
Symbol Decimal Binary
a 97 01100001
b 98 01100010
c 99 01100011
d 100 01100100
e 101 01100101
f 102 01100110
g 103 01100111
h 104 01101000
i 105 01101001
j 106 01101010
k 107 01101011
l 108 01101100
m 109 01101101
n 110 01101110
o 111 01101111
p 112 01110000
q 113 01110001
r 114 01110010
s 115 01110011
t 116 01110100
u 117 01110101
v 118 01110110
w 119 01110111
x 120 01111000
y 121 01111001
z 122 01111010

Hoo, boy.  I think I may have to stick with the numbers, to start with.

Overwhelmation…!!!

But anyhow, now I’ve got something new to try to become familiar with.  I don’t think I would do it with the kids, just yet.  They’re… busy doing foundational stuff, and let’s not screw that up.  But for me?  This is fascinating!

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