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Essential Guide to Computing: The Story of Information Technology, The by E. Garrison Walters

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Architecture: Suiting the CPU to the Task

As important as things like superscalar techniques and pipelining are, they don't exhaust the opportunities to make CPUs go faster. This section covers three ideas: reorganizing the computer to do a limited number of tasks quickly (RISC); using an instruction that has one opcode working on multiple operands (SIMD); and using an instruction that can have multiple opcodes working on multiple operands (VLIW).

RISC

The best known CPU architectural issue is that of RISC vs. CISC. RISC, which means reduced instruction set computing, was developed in the 1970s by IBM researcher John Cocke, who noticed that computers typically didn't use many of the instructions, particularly the more complex ones, that were ...

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