Java Script Data Types
By Stephen Bucaro
Programs work with data. A data type specifies what kind of data, for example a
number or a string of characters. The type of a piece of data is important
because it determines what kind of data can be stored in it and what operations can
be performed on it. For example, you can multiply the number 2 by the number 3 to get
the result 6. But if you multiply the character "2" by the character "3", you
get nonsense results.
Data types can be broken down into two categories, primitive and composite.
Primitive data types, like the integer, are the simplest. Composite data types,
like the object, are composed of several primitive data types.
Primitive Data Types
JavaScript supports several primitive data types.
• Integer
• Floatingpoint number
• String
• Boolean
Integers are whole numbers, either positive or negative. Integers are usually
expressed in decimal (base 10) notation, for example 123, but they can also be
expressed in hexadecimal or octal notation.
Hexidecimal (base 16) notation is commonly used when referring to data as it's
stored in a computers memory. A hexadecimal data type is indicated by starting a
number with 0x, for example 0x7aff.
Octal (base 8) notation was used when referring to data as its stored in a 4bit
memory cell and is now obsolete. An Octal data type is indicated by starting a number
with 0, for example 0275.
Floatingpoint numbers are fractional numbers, either positive or negative.
Floatingpoint numbers are usually expressed by including a decimal point, for
example 123.45, but when expressing very large or very small numbers, they can
be expressed in exponential notation. Numbers expressed in exponential notation
include a decimal point along with the letter e, for example 1.234e8.
Strings are a row of one or more characters, for example a word or a paragraph.
A string is expressed by enclosing it in quotes, for example "hello". The quotes
can be either single or double, but the starting quote must match the ending
quote. If you want to use a quote character within your string, enclose the
string in the opposite kind of quote, for example 'I said "hello" to you'.
Booleans are logical values that can be expressed as either true or false.
Booleans are commonly used when making tests or comparisons. For example, if
loggedin equals true, then permit access, if loggedin equals false, block
access. During computation true evaluates to 1 and false evaluates to 0.
