One example of a large number is bits that are found in the computer hard disk. As of the year 2011, the largest hard disk has a size of 1000 Gigabytes (GB). Computer scientists make use of bits when representing data and when doing scientific computations. 1 GB is equivalent to 1024 Megabytes (MB) while 1 MB is equivalent to 1024 Kilobytes (KB). 1 KB is equivalent to 1024 Bytes. 1 Byte is equivalent to 8 bits. The latest hard disk is therefore equivalent to 1000*1024*1024*1024*8 which translates to 8589934592000 bits. In scientific notation, this is equivalent to 8.59 x 1012. This notation is frequently used in computer science. Computer scientists make use of scientific notations to refer to bits. The frequency of use is high as many developments are seen in the arena of computing. With companies fighting for space and looking for computing space in the cloud, the use of this is common. Many people have realized the importance of owning computing and they are concerned with the bits that come with their computers[ CITATION Lak05 \p 109 \l 1033 ].
One advantage of using scientific notations is that of simplicity. As can be evident from the number above, it would be hard to realize how big the hard disk is in terms of bits in making use of regular notations alone. It is therefore important that as computing is developed; the ease of using scientific notation is becoming important even to the laymen. As computational complexity goes far, there has been the need to ensure that numbers are handled well. Another advantage of using scientific notations is when it comes to counting numbers. It makes it easy to count large numbers and saves the readers the hazard of counting numbers.
Lakshmikantham, V. and Kumar Sen Syamal. Computational error complexity in science and engineering. New York: Elsevier, 2005.