• Categories
  • The African Roots of Binary Technology | 01000001 01100110 01110010 01101001 01100011 01100001 00100000 01010010 01101001 01110011 01100101 00001010 00100000

    The African Roots of Binary Technology | 01000001 01100110 01110010 01101001 01100011 01100001 00100000 01010010 01101001 01110011 01100101 00001010 00100000
  • Njabulo Sandawana
  • Staff Writer
  • posted 2 weeks ago
  • It is well documented that the present binary system, which serves as the cornerstone of all digital technology, can be traced back to Gottfried Leibniz's work in the late 17th century. Recent scholarship, however, has shown evidence that Leibniz was directly inspired by older techniques of binary divination practised in Africa and the Islamic world. 

    According to Ron Eglash, Raymond Lull's 13th-century "logic machine" functioned as a predecessor to Leibniz's binary notion. Lull's approach was based on the North African practice of geomancy, which is a divination method based on random sand patterns. While geomancy arrived in Europe via 12th-century Spain, its roots can be traced back to traditions in West and North Africa as early as the 9th century. 

    Random line patterns were carefully transformed into binary digits and totalled using modular arithmetic in these early African divination systems. Divination archetypes were represented by groups of four binary representations. The following patterns were formed by recursively performing binary operations, a strategy that is still used in other African knowledge systems today. In West Africa, a very comparable system of Ifa divination was also observed to employ mathematical binary principles.

    The continued use of place-value numeric systems and binary thinking in these early African technologies most likely laid the groundwork for later innovations by people such as Lull and Leibniz. Today, African inventors continue to be inspired by indigenous knowledge in order to create new commercially viable solutions. The region is playing an increasingly crucial role in driving global technological growth.

    While it is crucial to recognize African contributions to subjects such as mathematics and computing, this conversation should not be structured around notions of a pure historical past. In the present, the continent faces numerous issues that can only be addressed via practical, inclusive development. Combining old knowledge with new technologies and viewpoints can assist in envisioning brighter futures for all. 

    To properly realize its promise, technology must prioritize the lived experiences and voices of different communities. Currently, standards such as sentiment analysis and recommendations promote Western perspectives while ignoring the perspectives of Africa's thousands of communities. Indigenous languages are underrepresented as well. If technology is to serve mankind, inclusivity must be prioritized, which African entrepreneurs are currently attempting to achieve by developing locally relevant solutions.

    With sustained innovation and inclusive methods, Africa's rich intellectual legacy may influence technology growth while also meeting pressing needs. Digital tools have the potential to enhance humanity by acknowledging our common roots and shared futures when created and shared through various global partnerships.

    *Please keep in mind that the purpose of this blog article is to shed light on the historical contributions of African knowledge systems to modern binary technology. The data supplied is based on existing research and should be studied and validated further by interested readers.

    Get Updates

    Stay up-to-date with the latest technology news and trends by joining our exclusive WhatsApp group! Get instant access to breaking news, insightful articles


    More News

  • industry | 1 month ago
  • MultiChoice sends shockwaves across Africa as it announces exit from Malawi TV market

    A shock wave hit the web earlier today as news started circulating that Multichoice is disconti...

  • industry | 1 month ago
  • Performance Analysis - How and why I do it.

    So I promised my brother Njabulo an article every week but I just haven't been in the write spa...

  • industry | 5 days ago
  • The Rise of No-Code and Its Implications for Developers

    Hello there! Let's take a look at the interesting realm of no-code development and its ramifica...