[OT] Why is it called string?

Paul Watson pwatson at knightsbridge.com
Thu Aug 21 23:31:10 CEST 2003

<P at draigBrady.com> wrote in message news:3F44DBF2.1010403 at draigBrady.com...
> Travis Whitton wrote:
> >>"In computing, the word 'bit' is an abbreviation of what two other
> >
> > Wow, I had no idea it was an abbreviation either. Luckily, dict had the
> > waiting for me:
> >
> > From Jargon File (4.3.0, 30 APR 2001) [jargon]:
> >
> >   bit n. [from the mainstream meaning and `Binary digIT']
> >
> > It's nice to see the occasional thread on computing history rather than
> > endless stream of coding issues.
> I'm always surprised by the number of people
> in computing that don't know this.
> bit is a contraction of "Binary digIT"
> byte is a pun on the word bit (8 bits)
> nibble is a pun on the word byte (4 bits)
> Pádraig.

My CS professor would insist that a byte is a collection of bits, and not
necessarily eight.  There are machines which do not have 8-bit addressable

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