How Hex Code Colors Work – and How to Choose Colors Without A Color Picker

How Hex Code Colors Work – and How to Choose Colors Without A Color Picker

In this guide, we’ll take you through everything you need to know about hex color codes, and show you how to use them in your own project. How Hex Code Colors Work – and How to Choose Colors Without A Color Picker

In this guide, we’ll take you through everything you need to know about hex color codes, and show you how to use them in your own project.

No matter what kind of coding project you are undertaking, chances are that at some point you’re going to start working with colors. This is particularly true if – as many people do – you learn to code using HTML to design web pages.

When you first start out designing in color, you’ll likely be using some kind of graphical interface to choose the colors you want to use before you apply them to the various elements in your page.

As you grow more confident in using HTML, though, and as you start to look at the code itself rather than just your graphical editor, you will notice that the colors you pick are denoted by some strange looking codes such as #ff0000.

These codes are called Hex color codes, and they are a fundamental part of the way that both HTML and CSS work. Learning how they function will not only save you a lot of time, it will also make your code faster, more elegant, and more reliable.

In this guide, we’ll take you through everything you need to know about hex color codes, and show you how to use them in your own project.

What Does Hexadecimal Mean?

First, let’s look at the “hex” part of the term “hex color code”. Hex, in this context, stands for “hexadecimal”, a number system in which there are 16 basic numerals, rather than the more familiar 10.

This is the number system used by HTML, and many other programming languages for that matter, and so it is the way in which colors are recorded in the language.

Hexidecimal, as the name suggests, is a way of encoding a base 16 number system. Decimal is base 2, and our regular system is base 10. Hexadecimal uses the same numerals as the regular system for the first 10 numbers (so 1 – 10) and then swaps to letters, so the numbers 11 – 15 are encoded using the letters A – F.

As an interesting aside, the primary reason that hexadecimal is used is because it possesses a natural link to the binary system that is used by your computer at a more basic level.

Binary numbers are commonly expressed as a power of 2, and 16 is 2^3. This makes it easy to convert between hexadecimal and binary (though we won’t be doing that today).

You don’t need to know this to use hex color codes, but it might come in handy the next time you want to impress someone.

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