lithium lick = L = live

little-endian adj.

Describes a computer architecture in which, within a given 16- or 32-bit word, bytes at lower addresses have lower significance (the word is stored `little-end-first'). The PDP-11 and VAX families of computers and Intel microprocessors and a lot of communications and networking hardware are little-endian. See big-endian, middle-endian, NUXI problem. The term is sometimes used to describe the ordering of units other than bytes; most often, bits within a byte.

--The Jargon File version 4.3.1, ed. ESR, autonoded by rescdsk.

Perhaps notable here is the motto of the software company Connectix, coined while creating the x86 emulator Virtual PC:

"Endian little hate we."

The original Virtual PC was written for the Macintosh, a big-endian architecture. Needless to say, emulating a little-endian architecture on a big-endian one has its share of problems. Thus, the phrase was born. Also perhaps somewhat indicative of the idea that little-endian is usually much harder to understand, at least initially, for people who write numbers starting with the most significant digit.

Log in or registerto write something here or to contact authors.