Gangnam Style Has Been Viewed So Many Times It Broke YouTube’s Code

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Just a fun bit of trivia for the coders out there: PSY’s Gangnam Style has been viewed so many times that it broke YouTube’s view counter, making it the very first video to break the reaches of a 32-bit integer.

Here’s what YouTube had to say on the topic:


Not sure what the hell that means? Just know that when you’re coding, you often have to consider how you’re storing data like numbers. Do you want a 32-bit integer, or a 64-bit integer? A 32-bit integer* takes up a bit less memory, but can only be used to store numbers from −2,147,483,648 to 2,147,483,647. A 64-bit integer is a bit heftier in its memory usage, but can store numbers from −9,223,372,036,854,775,808 to 9,223,372,036,854,775,807.

(* we’re ignoring the matter of signed/unsigned integers for the sake of simplicity here)

You know the Pac Man kill screen, where things freak the hell out after level 256? Similar idea, just with 8-bit numbers versus 32-bit.

As of yesterday’s landmark and subsequent code change, YouTube can now theoretically support videos with up to 9 quintillion views. Get to watchin’.