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Before ASCII was developed, the encodings in use included 26 alphabetic characters, 10 numerical digits, and from 11 to 25 special graphic symbols.
To include all these, and control characters compatible with the Comité Consultatif International Téléphonique et Télégraphique (CCITT) International Telegraph Alphabet No.
The ASA became the United States of America Standards Institute (USASI) 6 and 7 caused the characters to differ in bit pattern from the upper case by a single bit, which simplified case-insensitive character matching and the construction of keyboards and printers.
The committee considered an eight-bit code, since eight bits (octets) would allow two four-bit patterns to efficiently encode two digits with binary-coded decimal.