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64-bit and a (Better) Joke

Remember my joke from a few weeks ago? Where I laughed then had to explain the joke then laughed again?

And yes, I’m well aware that I probably laughed alone, but that’s fine and dandy in my little world. I crack myself up. I’m my biggest fan.

Anyway, I had a good reason for sharing that joke with you. I used it to explain a bit about bits and bytes. I hope we didn’t bite off more than we could chew.

(Hahahahahaha! Somebody stop me!)

Ok, I’m back. I’ll try to be serious.

So. Let’s recap:

  • A bit is a 0 or 1.
  • A byte is 8 bits.
  • With 8 bits, we can count from 0 to 255.
  • A kilobyte is a shorthand way of saying “1024 bytes”.
  • A megabyte is a shorthand way of saying “1024 kilobytes”.
  • A gigabyte is a shorthand way of saying “1024 megabytes”.

Bottom line: the more bits you have, the higher you can count.

Don’t stop reading yet! I’m gonna get to a point very very soon!

But before then – have you noticed all the fuss about 64-bit operating systems (like Windows 7)? Ever wondered what the big deal was?

And have you noticed the fuss about 64-bit processors (verses the previous 32-bit processors)?

(Remember, in our analogy the processor is represented by you, the person that runs your home, while the operating system is represented by your brain.)

And remember that computer memory is like a bulletin board that computer software uses to put notes to remember things?

Now let’s put it all together.

  • The operating system, processor, and memory all work with information (data).
  • The information is represented by bits (0’s and 1’s).
  • A 64-bit processor can work with a lot more information than a 32-bit processor.
  • Every spot in memory has an address. If we’re using 32 bits, we can have addresses from 0 to 4 gigabytes. But with 64 bits, we can (theoretically) have addresses from 0 to 16 exabytes (16 billion gigabytes). That’s a lot of bytes!
  • The more memory made available to your operating system, the faster it should be able to operate.

Here’s my point. Finally!

A computer with a 64-bit processor and operating system should be faster than a 32-bit system (even if it’s not obvious to you) and be able to handle more data at the same time. And the operating system will expect that and need more memory to run decently (all those pretty graphics suck up memory). So when you buy a new 64-bit computer for yourself or your college-bound kid, make sure it has at least 4GB of RAM to really get the most out of it!

One last joke…

(adapted from a joke I found online)

Jesus and Satan have an argument about who’s the better blogger. After hours of verbal sparring, they agree to have a contest with God the Father as the judge.

They sit in front of their computers and start typing furiously after the first trumpet blast. But, seconds before the final trumpet blast,  a bolt of lightning wipes out the electricity and their computers shut off.

The computers turn back on a few moments later, just as the final trumpet blast is sounding. The contest ends and God the Father asks Jesus and Satan to show their work.

Satan loses it and goes into the ugly cry, screaming, “It’s gone! All of it is GONE!”

So God the Father turns to Jesus and looks at Him expectantly.

Jesus pulls up a browser and goes to www.jesusblogs.com.kingdomofgod. The browser comes to life with a website that will surely win every web design award. The blog posts describe His daily activity in the heart of every believer with both humor and tenderness.

Satan is shocked and screams accusingly, “He cheated! How is that even possible?!”

God the Father chuckles and replies, “Jesus saves.”


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