octet definition by American Heritage Dictionary
- Music a. A composition for eight voices or eight instruments.b. A group of eight singers or eight instrumentalists.
- A group of eight: “A train of heavy wagons rumbled north on the Winnipeg Trail, drawn by octets of oxen” (Garrison Keillor).
- See octave.
- A set of eight valence electrons in an atom or ion, forming a stable configuration.
Origin: Alteration (influenced by octo- and duet) of Italian ottetto, from otto, eight, from Latin octō; see oktō(u) in Indo-European roots.
octet - Computer Definition
A unit of data eight bits in length.An octet may comprise multiple fields of data or perhaps a small portion of a field and, therefore, does not necessarily bear any relationship to a byte.A byte generally comprises eight (8) bits that represent a letter in an alphabet (e.g., a, A, z, or Z), a diacritical mark (e.g., ~ or `), a single digit number (e.g., 0, 1, 2, or 3), a punctuation mark (e.g., , ., or !), or a control character (e.g., paragraph break, page break, or carriage return). A byte also may be four (4) bits, five (5) bits, 16 bits, or even 32 bits in length. See also byte.
An eight-bit storage unit. In the international community, octet is the term often used instead of byte. See bitstream.