Psy’s Gangnam Style Breaks YouTube

/ 2 years ago

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Gangnam Style, the music video by Korean K-pop star Psy, broke YouTube’s view counter.

The video, with its staggeringly high number of views outpaced YouTube’s counter, which was previously limited to 2,147,483,647 views, thanks to its use of a 32-bit integer. Gangnam Style currently has 2,155,260,965 views at time of writing.

Google has since updated the counter to use a 64-bit integer, meaning the new limit is 9,223,372,036,854,775,808, that’s over 9 quintillion.

“We never thought a video would be watched in numbers greater than a 32-bit integer (=2,147,483,647 views), but that was before we met PSY. “Gangnam Style” has been viewed so many times we had to upgrade to a 64-bit integer (9,223,372,036,854,775,808)!”

The counter on Psy’s video now comes with a little mathematical wizardry whenever you hover your cursor over it.

I’ve never particularly understood the insane popularity of the video myself, but still, I guess it pushes Justin Bieber’s ‘Baby’ into second place for most watched YouTube video. That’s definitely a good thing.

Source: BBC News

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  • Wayne

    Me either but there’s no accounting for taste.

  • DABhand

    Prove me wrong, but 32 bit has a limit of just over 4 billion.

    • Ryan Simmons

      I’m no mathematician, or software engineer for that matter, but put it to YouTube – ““We never thought a video would be watched in numbers greater than a 32-bit integer (=2,147,483,647 views)” – that’s what they say.

      • DABhand

        32bit is essentially 256x256x256x256 = 4294967296, which is 4GB. Hence why 32bit OS’s can only hand that much RAM of all sources at once.

        And if you work it out, they are half that with their views. basically what they have is a 28bit limit.

    • Simon Gustavsson

      Challenge accepted.

      What Google is referring to is a signed 32-bit integer. Signed integers are used to represents both negative, and positive values. As opposed to unsigned integers that hold only positive numbers.

      Because it can hold negative values, the top bit (the 31st) is used to determine whether the number of negative, or positive. Leaving only 31 bits for the actual value. Resulting in a maximum value of 2,147,483,647.

      Hope that helps.

      • DABhand

        Yep that makes more sense, I didn’t think about signed integers because when would they use negative views 🙂

        Good call.