This episode proceeds our conversation on the Basics that Digitizing Data. In bespeak to understand how computer systems work, first, you need to go back to your straightforward math. Let’s talk about the symbols we usage to stand for quantities. This episode is a rapid overview of our counting system and Base-10 number is numbered system.

You are watching: What is a symbol used to represent a number

Your an essential takeaways are:

Numbers and also digits are the symbols provided to stand for a quantityDigits room the number 0 come 9The Decimal Number device is based upon the quantities of 10Base-10 is expressed as 10 come the strength of a aspect of X

Study Notes

How do we represent the number of items?

Numbers space symbols which stand for a counting or quantity. We space putting emphasis on “symbol” and “representation.” Humankind created “numbers” together a kind of global language.

Early amount Identification


We have a certain variety of items. This items room clocks.We desire to determine the quantity of clocks by counting them.What walk we usage to count?We might use the 10 fingers on our hands to count. 1, 2, 3, 4….

The Symbol


We require a way to connect the quantity vs. Counting on our finger or showing images of the number of items.Let’s begin by identifying the signs we will usage in this new language.We should represent some variety of counts on ours fingers.Starting at the first finger, we assign the symbol: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9.How carry out we represent 10?Notice that each that the number is a solitary symbol.Do we usage a 2 symbol depiction of “10”?What if we supplied “0”? the a solitary symbol.Redoing ours counting then, the an initial finger is 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9.

In the Decimal Number System, we use the symbols: 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, 0.

These icons are referred to as digits.

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Per the Merriam-Webster dictionary, a number is a noun the means:

a written symbol for any type of of the number 0 to 9a finger or toe

Symbol to stand for Quantity


21 clocksWe know that we create that price as 2 digits: 21What is the pattern?

What is the digit pattern?




You can break this down right into patterns:

How numerous times execute you counting 10 on your fingers? 2 times, or 2 counts the 10 clocks.What is remaining? over there is 1 clock remaining.Now let’s formulate a mathematics expression.2 counts the 10 is the very same as 2 x 10.1 remaining is the same as 1 x 1.We have a certain variety of items. Below these items room clocks.We desire to identify the quantity of clocks by counting them.Show exactly how a decimal number is a symbol provided to stand for the quantity of something. Here, the symbols room clocks.Then, we begin breaking the down right into positional notation.Convert that right into base-10.If we have 2 x 10 then we can say that there are 2 tens.Using Base-10, “tens” is represented by 10 come the power of 1, together that equals 10.Therefore, we deserve to say 2 x 101 which equates to 20.If we have actually 1 x 1, then we have the right to say there are 1 ones.Using Base-10, “ones” is stood for by 10 to the strength of 0, together that equals 1.Therefore, we can say 1 x 100 which equates to 1.We just produced a symbol collection to represent 21 clocks.

Decimal Number device Base-10