Short Discourse on Unicode

Introduction

Some people are under the misconception that Unicode is simply a 16-bit code where each character takes 16 bits and therefore there are 65,536 possible characters. This is not actually correct. It is the single most common myth about Unicode, so if you thought that, don’t feel bad.

In fact, Unicode makes you think a different way about encoding characters.¬†Until now, we’ve assumed that a letter maps to some bits which you can store on disk or in memory:

A -> 0100 0001 Continue reading Short Discourse on Unicode

An Intro to Hexadecimal

Introduction

If you work with computers on some level beyond Microsoft Office or browsing the net, at some point, you will run across hexadecimals. What are they and why do people bother using them when they seem something better left for assembly programmers?

Hexadecimal is just a base-16 number system. Because we grew up in a society where most of us has 10 fingers, we use the base 10 decimal system for the most part. In hex, in addition to the numerals 0-9 to represent values zero through nine, we also have letters A-F to represent values ten through fifteen. Continue reading An Intro to Hexadecimal