Blob

If you're like me, you picture a blob as a enigmatic green object that lacks a defined shape or size. In the computer world, however, blobs are a bit easier to define. The term "blob" actually stands for "Binary Large Object" and is used for storing information in databases.

A blob is a data type that can store binary data. This is different than most other data types used in databases, such as integers, floating point numbers, characters, and strings, which store letters and numbers. Since blobs can store binary data, they can be used to store images or other multimedia files. For example, a photo album could be stored in a database using a blob data type for the images, and a string data type for the captions.

Because blobs are used to store objects such as images, audio files, and video clips, they often require significantly more space than other data types. The amount of data a blob can store varies depending on the database type, but some databases allow blob sizes of several gigabytes. Now that is a big blob!

Updated 2006

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