BCD (Binary Coded Decimals): Lua parsing library

BCD (Binary Coded Decimals) is a common way to encode integer numbers in a way that makes human-readable output somewhat simpler. In this encoding scheme, every decimal digit is encoded as either a single byte (8 bits), or a nibble (half of a byte, 4 bits). This obviously wastes a lot of bits, but it makes translation into human-readable string much easier than traditional binary-to-decimal conversion process, which includes lots of divisions by 10.

For example, encoding integer 31337 in 8-digit, 8 bits per digit, big endian order of digits BCD format yields

00 00 00 03 01 03 03 07

Encoding the same integer as 8-digit, 4 bits per digit, little endian order BCD format would yield:

73 31 30 00

Using this type of encoding in Kaitai Struct is pretty straightforward: one calls for this type, specifying desired encoding parameters, and gets result using either as_int or as_str attributes.

KS implementation details

License: CC0-1.0
Minimal Kaitai Struct required: 0.8

This page hosts a formal specification of BCD (Binary Coded Decimals) using Kaitai Struct. This specification can be automatically translated into a variety of programming languages to get a parsing library.

Lua source code to parse BCD (Binary Coded Decimals)