Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A sequence of adjacent bits, usually eight, operated on as a unit by a computer.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A sequence of adjacent bits (binary digits) that can be operated on as a unit by a computer; the smallest usable machine word; nearly always eight bits, which can represent an integer from 0 to 255 or a single character of text.
  • n. A unit of computing storage equal to eight bits

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a sequence of 8 bits (enough to represent one character of alphanumeric data) processed as a single unit of information

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Alteration and blend of bit3 and bite.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Expansion of bit, coined by Dr. Werner Buchholz in July 1956, during the early design phase for the IBM Stretch computer.

Examples

Comments

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  • Answers gives a different etymology.

    May 7, 2008

  • A contraction of 'by eight.'

    May 7, 2008