devxlogo

Use Bit Fields to Store Significant Amounts of Data Optimally

Use Bit Fields to Store Significant Amounts of Data Optimally

Both C and C++ enable you to store and access data directly in the tiniest possible unit: a bit. This technique is required when dealing with a huge amount of data, for example, on databases containing dozens of millions of records; when memory is scarce (i.e., in embedded systems, hand watch phone books) or when transmitted via a slow communication link. In the following example, only one byte is used to store a person’s data, instead of three which would have been needed otherwise. When multiplied by a factor of 10 million, for example a national registry’s records, it does make a difference:

 struct PersonalData {unsigned int marital_stat: 3;  //3 bitsunsigned int gender: 1;		//1 bitunsigned int children: 4;	//4 bits};enum Stat {single, married, divorced, widowed, separated};enum Gender {male, female};void f () {	PersonalData pd [1000]; //1000 bytes	//fill with data	pd[0].marital_stat = married;	pd[0].gender = female;	pd[0].children = 2; //ints can be used but its the user's
//responsibilty to avoid overflow. Enum's are
//safe, though //...etc. TrasmitToClient(&pd[0], 1000); //transmit all of them }
See also  5 Strategies for Supercharging Your CRM
devxblackblue

About Our Editorial Process

At DevX, we’re dedicated to tech entrepreneurship. Our team closely follows industry shifts, new products, AI breakthroughs, technology trends, and funding announcements. Articles undergo thorough editing to ensure accuracy and clarity, reflecting DevX’s style and supporting entrepreneurs in the tech sphere.

See our full editorial policy.

About Our Journalist