come into element as electrical currents


Slovenia, Slovenian

I'm translating a show about numbers in history. Here it talks about binary system and how it was first used in Colossus (first British decoding machine created in the WWII). I don't understand the meaning:

In here, One and Zero,
something and nothing,
have finally come into their
element as electrical currents,
on and off.

Thank you!

  • linargw

    Slovenia, Slovenian
    Yes, but I don't understand what it has to do with electrical currents and ON and OFF swtiches... ??



    Senior Member
    AE, Español
    One and zero are the two digits of a binary numerical system; they can be thought of as "on" and "off," or as the writer phrases it, "something" and "nothing." But these two digits have become of tremendous importance as the basic units of computer systems, in "electrical currents."