Beading In Binary
Have science fun as a family! Complete activities with parental supervision.
- Beads in at least three colors, two colors for binary code and another for spacers (we used perler beads, but any beads will work)
- String (a piece of about 12 inches long for a bracelet, 24 inches for a necklace—may need to be longer or shorter depending on what beads you use)
- Binary code key (provided in the photo carousel)
- Pen or pencil
- On a piece of paper, spell out your name or initials, spreading the letters across the paper.
- Underneath each letter, use the key to write out the binary code pattern for that letter. For this code, the black box represents the number 0 and the white box represents the number 1.
- Tie a knot at the end of the string big enough so the beads cannot fall off of it; it may require double or triple knots.
- Choose one color to represent the black box/number 0 and another color to represent the white box/number 1. Choose a third color (or multiple colors) to act as a spacer between the letters.
- Take your piece of string and string on the beads.
- When you’re done, tie your string into a bracelet or a necklace and wear it around!
- You don’t have to stop there—make more for your family!
- Be sure to take a picture or video to share in the Facebook comments on the Buffalo Museum of Science or Tifft Nature Preserve pages!
What’s it all about?
Binary code is a way to represent words and letters in a way computers can understand—just like language! This code is made up of patterns of two numbers—0 and 1. Every number is a bit and every pattern of 8 numbers is called a byte. Each byte represents different letters or symbols, allowing information to get passed via computers.
Things we use everyday use binary code, like DVD and Blu-Ray disks, computers, phone calls and more!
If the black squares are 0 and the white squares are 1, try to decode the message below!
01101001 01101100 01101111 01110110 01100101 01110011 01100011
01101001 01100101 01101110 01100011 01100101