Why have computers been designed to use the binary number system? 

Subject Introduction to Computer System
NU Year Set: 1.(b) Marks: 3 Year: 2012

Binary and hexadecimal numbers are widely used in computer science. For this article, we’ll focus on binary numbers. Binary numbers can be considered the very basic representation of a number in an electronic device. They represent an ON state (1) and OFF state (0). 

Every computer is made up of many electronic components. That is why a basic knowledge of electronics is needed to understand how and why binary numbers are used in computers. We’ll keep it very simple.

A computer is built with many connections and components, which are used to transfer and store data, as well as communicate with other components. Most of that storing, transferring, and communicating happens with digital electronics. Digital electronics use the binary system (ON/OFF). A signal with a series of ON/OFF pulses is equal to a binary number.

In electronics, a voltage level or current flow is a way to represent a value. For example, 5V (volts) or 0.5A (amperes). The makers of electronic devices could, of course, assign any meaning that they want to different voltage values. If you need 10 values, you could divide the range of 0V-4V (including 0, which creates 5 “steps”) by 10. 

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