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Since zero is the lowest value of an unsigned binary integer, which is one of the most fundamental types in programming and hardware design, it is often natural to count from zero rather than one, especially when the integer is actually an index, as in hardware addressing or C and Lisp's 0-based indexing of arrays.

Hackers and computer scientists often like to call the first chapter of a publication "Chapter 0", especially if it is of an introductory nature (one of the classic instances was in the First Edition of K&R). In recent years this trait has also been observed among many pure mathematicians (who have an independent tradition of numbering from 0).

Zero-based numbering tends to reduce fencepost errors, though it cannot eliminate them entirely.

Logically, the next item after the zeroth should be the "oneth" but this is never used.
References in periodicals archive ?
The difference between the levels of VEGF at Preop 0th minute and those at all the other times was found to be significant.
The National Law Center for Inter-American Free Trade (NLCIFT) is celebrating its 1 0th anniversary.
0th gifts of a literary nature at The Friends Gift Shop at Selby Public Library, 1331 First St.
A SOIR in the 0th percentile is more optimistic than all readings taken over the past year.
Anfield: Anfield Stadium, Anfield Road, Liverpool, L4 0TH ?
Shepshed suffered an early blow when in the 2 0th minute keeper Damien Quailley, recalled for his first appearance since mid-September, suffered a back injury and had to be replaced by skipper Tim Wilkes.
Heggs had already gone close with a header before the former Albion man prodded the Lambs in front in the 1 0th mitinute after Shots keeper Nikki Bull made a hash of Kyle Storer's free-kick.