The CPU Topic 2.1.1 / Core
Key points
  • the basic architecture of the central processing unit (CPU);
  • the functions of the arithmetic logic unit (ALU);
  • the functions of the control unit (CU);
  • the functions of the registers (memory address register, MAR, and memory data register, MDR) within the CPU.
Vocabulary
  • central processing unit (CPU);
  • control unit (CU);
  • arithmetic and logic unit (ALU);
  • register;
  • memory data register;
  • memory address register.
Resources
Related topics

Starter

How is processor speed measured? What does this mean? What is the speed of your computer?

Tasks
  1. Work through this presentation on the CPU.
  2. What is the fastest processor today? What is Moore's Law?
  3. Extension work: What is meant by bus speed? Why does it matter? What is a typical bus speed for a desktop computer?
  4. Draw and label a basic diagram of a CPU. [4 marks] (May 2007 SL P1 q9).
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