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Start your free trial###### jaquavieon brewer

Courses Plus Student 651 Points# how can i get a better understanding of binary

how do i use the understanding of binary functions for programming ?

## 2 Answers

###### Steven Parker

228,977 PointsBinary functions are useful because many decisions made in a program have only 2 outcomes, like "yes" or "no". These are a special kind of binary also known as "boolean".

But if you're having trouble decoding binary __numbers__, here's one technique that might be helpful. Make a column for each digit, and starting from the right, put a "1" and then as you move left put double the value of the column next to it. Remember, right-to-left ( *THIS WAY* ). You'll get something like this, which is a horizontal version of the helper table shown in the quiz:

```
128 64 32 16 8 4 2 1 <-- 8 columns for 8 digits
```

Then, put your binary number on the next line, spread into the columns. For this example, let's say you wanted to convert the binary number "`111`

". Now below that, multiply each top number by the binary digit and put the result below. It's easy, since binary digits are either 1 or 0, so you either put the number on top again or zero.

Then finally, add up all the numbers on the bottom row and that's your answer. Like this:

```
128 64 32 16 8 4 2 1 <-- starting columns
0 0 0 0 0 1 1 1 <-- multiply by your binary digits
--- --- --- --- --- --- --- ---
0 0 0 0 0 4 2 1 <-- add these up: 4 + 2 + 1 = 7
```

Also, since zeros in front don't count you can skip them. So in this case we really only needed 3 columns.

###### Faoud Mohammed

1,348 PointsI remember this technique :)

## collins ero

Courses Plus Student 362 Points## collins ero

Courses Plus Student 362 Pointsplease how did you arrive at the second column i.e the binary numbers "0 0 0 0 0 1 1 1''

## Steven Parker

228,977 Points## Steven Parker

228,977 PointsThe binary number shown here was simply chosen at random for an example. When you apply this technique, you would substitute the actual binary number that you want to convert.

## elomaur

5,227 Points## elomaur

5,227 PointsI had trouble understanding binaries since 2013 while in college and gave up on learning more about it since then and you just helped me understand it in 5 mins. I can't thank you enough!

## Steven Parker

228,977 Points## Steven Parker

228,977 PointsIt's nice to know that the old answer continues to be useful!