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big-endian in Technology

1. A computer architecture in which, within a given multi-byte numeric representation, the most significant byte has the lowest address (the word is stored "big-end-first").
Most processors, including the IBM 370 family, the PDP-10, the Motorola microprocessor families, and most of the various RISC designs current in mid-1993, are big-endian.
See -endian.
2. A backward electronic mail address. The world now follows the Internet hostname standard (see FQDN) and writes e-mail addresses starting with the name of the computer and ending up with the country code (e.g. In the United Kingdom the Joint Networking Team decided to do it the other way round (e.g. before the Internet domain standard was established. Most gateway sites required ad-hockery in their mailers to handle this.
By July 1994 this parochial idiosyncracy was on the way out and mailers started to reject big-endian addresses. By about 1996, people would look at you strangely if you suggested such a bizarre thing might ever have existed.
[Jargon File]
The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010
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