(3) Physical appearance of binary numbers. For a moment, forget about
place value (the entries at the top of each column) and consider the binary numbers
themselves: 0, 1, 10, 11, 100, 101, 11, 1000, and so forth. In appearance, they look like strings
of zeros and ones. This is because there are only two symbols to work with. As soon
as you've used the zero and the one in the first place to the left of the decimal, you must
move out to the next place to the left. Thus, binary numbers quickly become multidigit
strings of zeros and ones. What are the next three binary numbers after 111? The first
one is 1000. The next is 1001. The one after that is 1011. Enter these in figure 1-14.
We now have a list of 10 binary numbers occupying up to four places. If we were in the
decimal system, the first 10 numbers (0 through 9) would occupy only one place each.
This is what we mean when we say that binary numbers quickly turn into multidigit
Figure 1-14. Binary digits quickly turn into multidigit figures because there
are only two symbols.