ASCII stands for American Standard Code for Information Interchange

ASCII, which stands for American Standard Code for Information Interchange, is a 7-bit code that was originally developed in 1963 as a way to represent all of the characters used on teletype machines. ASCII was developed by the American Standards Association (ASCII) and became commonly used after its initial release.

Today, ASCII is still one of the most commonly used standards worldwide when it comes to representing text characters. There are actually several versions of ASCII including Extended ASCII (8 bits), Numeric Character References (NCR), Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) Character Sets, and Unicode Transformation Formats—all aiming to represent different sets of characters with varying levels of specificity and complexity.

Computers communicate with each other using many types of standardized codes. ASCII is a standard code for information exchange between computers. It stands for American Standard Code for Information Interchange, and it was created in the 1960s by Bob Bemer, one of computer science’s great pioneers.

For example, as in the old days, today’s computer users use some kind of keyboard to type text characters into a word processor or browser. The user presses a key on the keyboard and an electrical signal is sent to the computer via a cable. When this happens, two things occur:

  • A code corresponding with that specific keystroke is transmitted along with it; and
  • The computer compares that code with those in its own list and translates it into the corresponding character in its own memory.

Your keystrokes are converted into ASCII codes, which are transmitted along with the data. The ASCII code is a list of numbers and characters that represent each character on your keyboard. For example, pressing “a” on your keyboard generates the ASCII code 97 (1*97). Pressing shift+”a” generates the ASCII code 65 (65+97), or 109 in decimal notation—the letter “b.”

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