# ASCII code  What is it? Character List ▷ 2020

Imagine that when you had to write a message on your mobile phone or a text for a job on your computer, you had to write a lot of zeros (0) and ones (1); what are known as binary numbers, instead of letters and words.

Well in case you don’t know, binary numbers are the only way in which your computer can process all the information it receives from abroad, all the orders and commands that we send you arrive at the processing center in the form of binaries.

But how does this information conversion happen? We will be revealing all that in this small installment that we have prepared for you about the code “Aski”, as this code tends to be pronounced in our Spanish language.

## What is ASCII code and what is it for in computing?

Computers have a somewhat complex way of understanding and processing information, basically the data receives it in the form of characters and converts them to binary numbers, that is, in a cluster of ones and zeros.

The smallest units of information in these teams are characters that are stored in 8 bits. These are usually a sequence of 8 binary digits, which can also be called octal numbers or octets.

The American standard code for the exchange of information, better known as ASCII by its acronym in English, It is a character code that is based on the Roman or Latin alphabet. This serves to dictate the parameters that allow to represent the characters in bits, being the case of the ASCII code, 7 bits.

In a few words we can say that the ASCII code it is a translator of information between the user and the machine.

It allows to accelerate and optimize the process and storage of information on a computer while enhancing its communication with the outside world. It allows to represent a total of 128 characters in its regular version that go from the numbers 0 to 127, with base 10.

These units are divided into two groups, which are code control and printables that include all the letters of the alphabet plus the symbols used on our keyboard. In the extended version of the ASCII code you can get double of them, since it reaches 255 with a decimal base.

This version can include graphemes from older languages ​​such as Greek or Hebrew according to need, and in these tables the information is stored in 8 bits.

## History and origin Why was ASCII created?

As sad and regrettable as it may be, human beings have only made more use of our potential and increased our technology more in times of war and crisis.

Approximately for the year 1945 during the development of the second world war, it was necessary to transmit messages in Morse code securely. This process was greatly streamlined because the “dot and dash” of this could also easily equal 1 and 0 of binary numbers, and for this they used the telegraphs of the time.

This first phase of what we know today as ASCII was developed by the telecommunications company Bell, which today is AT&T.

But, it was not until 1963 thanks to the acceptance of the “American Standards Agency”, that it was possible to reformulate many of the units that were already used in the old telegraphs, and also to add many more to be able to consolidate the ASCII code.

Despite the new units added including new punctuation symbols, accents and lowercase letters it was still not enough. So years later, IBM released the first extended version of the code, which reached 255 characters.

## ASCII Code Control Characters What are they and what are they used for?

In the ASCII code there are 33 codes that are not part of the known characters, These are the first from 0-31 and 127. Which are conceived as control units, where it is easier for you to give orders and control both the computer and other external devices. Notably, earlier in his time he could control printers and other equipment.

However, with the passage of time they have become obsolete, even so, can be activated using the ALT keys + the number in decimal places, but only from the numeric keypad.

For example, one of the most common activated with this code is the @, which can be enabled using the keys ALT + 64 on the side numeric keypad.

Binary
Decimal
Abbreviation
Name / Meaning

0000 0000 NUL Null Character 0000 0001 1 SOH Start of Header 0000 0010 2 STX Start of Text 0000 0011 3 ETX End of Text 0000 0100 4 EOT End of Transmission 0000 0101 5 ENQ Consultation 0000 0110 6 ACK Acknowledgment of receipt 0000 0111 7 BEL Bell 0000 1000 8 BS Backspace 0000 1001 9 HT Horizontal tab 0000 1010 10 LF Line break 0000 1011 11 VT Vertical tab 0000 1100 12 FF Page down 0000 1101 13 CR Carriage return 0000 1110 14 SO Disable uppercase 0000 1111 15 YES Enable uppercase 0001 0000 16 DLE Data Link Escape 0001 0001 17 DC1 Device Control 1 0001 0010 18 DC2 Device Control 2 0001 0011 19 DC3 Device Control 3 0001 0100 20 DC4 Device Control 4 0001 0101 21 NAK Negative Acknowledgment 0001 0110 22 SYN Synchronization waiting 0001 0111 23 ETB End of transmission block 0001 1000 24 CAN Cancel 0001 1001 25 EM Middle end 0001 1010 26 SUB Substitution 0001 1011 27 ESC Escape 0001 1100 28 FS File separator 0001 1101 29 GS Group Separator 0001 1110 30 RS Register Separator 0001 1111 31 US Unit Separator 0111 1111 127 DEL Delete

## Printable ASCII Characters What are they and what are they used for?

In the printable symbols table we can include all those digits and letters that are used in writing, leaving out all punctuation marks for the moment.

In the same way, these can be activated by pressing the ALT + keys the exact combination of numbers in decimals. Which range from 48 – 57 for the numbers 0 to 9, and from 65-90 for the uppercase alphabet, and from 97-122 for the lowercase alphabet.

Numbers

Binary
Decimal
Character represented

0011 0000 48 0011 0001 49 1 0011 0010 50 2 0011 0011 51 3 0011 0100 52 4 0011 0101 53 5 0011 0110 54 6 0011 0111 55 7 0011 1000 56 8 0011 1001 57 9

Capital letters

Binary
Decimal
Character represented

0 100 0001 65 A 0 100 0010 66 B 0 100 0011 67 C 0 100 0 100 68 D 0 100 0101 69 E 0 100 0 110 70 F 0 100 0111 71 G 0 100 1000 72 H 0 100 1001 73 I 0 100 1010 74 J 0 100 1011 75 K 0 100 1100 76 L 0 100 1101 77 M 0100 1110 78 N 0100 1111 79 O 0101 0000 80 P 0101 0001 81 Q 0101 0010 82 R 0101 0011 83 S 0101 0100 84 T 0101 0101 85 U 0101 0110 86 V 0101 0111 87 W 0101 1000 88 X 0101 1001 89 Y 0101 1010 90 Z

Lowercase letters

Binary
Decimal
Character represented

0110 0001 97 a 0110 0010 98 b 0110 0011 99 c 0110 0100 100 d 0110 0101 101 e 0110 0110 102 f 0110 0111 103 g 0110 1000 104 h 0110 1001 105 i 0110 1010 106 j 0110 1011 107 k 0110 1100 108 l 0110 1101 109 m 0110 1110 110 n 0110 1111 111 or 0111 0000 112 p 0111 0001 113 q 0111 0010 114 r 0111 0011 115 s 0111 0100 116 t 0111 0101 117 u 0111 0110 118 v 0111 0111 119 w 0111 1000 120 x 0111 1001 121 y 0111 1010 122 z

Finally, we have a single printable character that is only the “Space” number 32, same that is activated with the space bar. This is among the printable characters as an invisible one because although it cannot be appreciated, it is always present in our texts.

Binary
Decimal
Character represented

0010 0000 32 space ()

## List of ASCII special characters What are they and what are they used for?

Special symbols include all symbols, punctuation, and math symbols, which are also part of the printable characters, but are separated in this way.

The groups go from the decimal number 33-47 joined from 58-64 continued by 91-96 and finally from 123-126:

Special characters

Binary
Decimal
Character represented

0010 0001 33! 0010 0010 34 “0010 0011 35 # 0010 0100 36 \$ 0010 0101 37% 0010 0110 38 & 0010 0111 39 ‘0010 1000 40 (0010 1001 41) 0010 1010 42 * 0010 1011 43 + 0010 1100 44, 0010 1101 45 – 0010 1110 46. ​​0010 1111 47/0011 1010 58: 0011 1011 59; 0011 1100 60 0011 1111 63? 0100 0000 64 @ 0101 1011 91
[

0101 1100
92

0101 1101
93
]

0101 1110 94 ^ 0101 1111 95 _ 0110 0000 96 `0111 1011 123 {0111 1100 124 | 0111 1101 125} 0111 1110 126 ~

## ASCII vs Unicode What are the main differences between each?

Unicode code can be said to be an improved version of ASCII, since Unicode includes the same ASCII characters without modifying any, but supports a greater number of these.

Its main objective is to be compatible with all equipment, but let’s see what the basic differences are that distinguish these 2 codes:

• The main difference is that Unicode binary sequences are much longer and heavier than ASCII, reaching up to 32 bits while ASCII only reaches up to 7 bits.
• Another of the differences of these codes is the number of characters, the ASCII being only 128 while the Unicode reaches up to 221 characters in its standard version.
• Unicode is prepared to support multiple languages ​​simultaneously unlike ASCII code.

## ASCII Art What is this type of art that is made with this code?

This is an unconventional discipline that can be called a “Digital Pointillism”.

Basically the artist uses all the printable characters that the code provides, and in a simple text editor he puts his imagination to work until he achieves truly admirable works.

This type of art has been used a lot in old consoles that did not have graphic processing capacity like today. It was also present in the designs of the first video games, and in some cases it was useful for the graphical representation of diagrams.

Although the concept of this sounds quite basic, Art ASCII is one of the most versatile currents, being able to be combined with others to create pieces of landscaping, realism, cubism and a long etcetera. This has even been valid for being used as a filter in multiple applications and multimedia editing software.

Also, it had a strong influence on internet culture. Surely you have not realized it, but inside you are an ASCII artist. We all ever text those semicolon combinations followed by a closing parenthesis to wink at a contact ( 😉 ). These expressions are part of this art, and were the first “emoticons” in history.

Its influence is so great that both WhatsApp, Telegram or Facebook Messenger allows you to add an emoticon by entering its ASCII version. However, it is also one of the most underrated art forms.

If you have any questions, leave them in the comments, we will answer you as soon as possible, and it will also be of great help to more members of the community. Thank you! 😉

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