Endian Wars
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2003-09-23 11:44

Endian Wars

"This is an attempt to stop a war. I hope it is not too late and that somehow, magically perhaps, peace will prevail again." - Danny Cohen, 1980

Should multi-byte data types be stored with the least significant byte (LSB) at the lowest memory location (little-endian: 80x86, VAX, Alpha) or the highest memory location (big-endian: Motorola, PPC, SPARC, and just about everyone else)?  In other words, if you grab the byte at the lowest address, do you grab the little-end of the number (LSB, little-endian) or the big end of the number (MSB, big-endian)?

Code Corner - Big-Endian Little-Endian - What's it all about

Dr. Bill's Notes on Little Endian vs. Big Endian

Little Endian vs. Big Endian

Here are some direct references to the original 1980 article by Danny Cohen that gave the names "endian" to the issue:

DAV's Endian FAQ

Big Endian vs. Little Endian

And here are grown-up people still arguing about the issue in August 2000, twenty years later:

Slashdot: More Linux on Merced info

Web Author: Ian! D. Allen idallen@idallen.ca      Updated: 2003-09-23 11:44

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