Bits, Bytes and Nibbles?

Photo source: MedienGuerilla

It’s the time of the school year for quizzes and tests. Do you know anything about how computers store information? Let’s start with bits. A bit is a binary digit, a 0 or a 1. Eight bits (b) make up a byte (B). Then we also have kilobytes (KB), megabytes (MB), gigabytes (GB), terabytes (TB), etc.

  • 1 TB = 1024 Gb
  • 1 GB = 1024 MB
  • 1 MB = 1024 KB
  • 1 kb = 1024 bytes (B)

You may sometimes see 1024 replaced by 1000. There is a bit of controversy and discussion about the use of base 2 notation (1024 = 2^10) instead of base 10 notation (10^3). Humans generally live and work with base 10 (digits 0 – 9) but computers operate with base 2 (digits 0 and 1)


Quiz question (taken from Grade 9 curriculum): How many 512 MB flash disk USB drives can you fit in an 80 Gb hard drive?

I leave you with this final question: What is a nibble?


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