Update: I seem to get two kinds of answers and I need to get more clarity on how they relate (or not). What we have so far is, roughly in the lines of:
you have 32 bits, the / indicates how you split it
and (or versus)
You have an address, the / indicates the range around it
I am looking for a way to explain a notation such as a.b.c.d/e to someone who is not too deep into networking.
Imagine it is a manager type, or even a data scientist who has seen some sites can be accessed by typing an IP address, but he/she does not have too much more familiarity with the field.
What have I tried?
I searched for explanations, and found many but often these things talk about 'subnet masks' which would require an explanation by itself.
Therefore I have tried to come up with a simple anecdote, though I am also open to an explanation that is simple without an anecdote I have found this to work well in the past.
Attempt so far -- Warning, comments pointed out my example has some serious issues
An IP address consists of four numbers separated with a dot between each. You read it from left to right, and each dot adds a level of detail. This is very similar to a real address, think about:
When working with IP addresses, we often add something like /24 or /32 at the back. This is...