Computer Organization and Design Second Edition : The Hardware/Software Interface

Author: David Patterson, John Hennessy
List Price: $84.95
Our Price: Click to see the latest and low price
ISBN: 1558604286
Publisher: Morgan Kaufmann (01 August, 1997)
Edition: Hardcover
Sales Rank: 47,708
Average Customer Rating: 3.75 out of 5

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Customer Reviews

Rating: 5 out of 5
An Interesting Step-by-Step Aproach
I use this book as a reference in my technical writing.

I recommend this book to everyone who have a basic Assembly Language programming background and want to understand everything behind the Machine Language Operation Codes decoding process.

The authors build from scratch (and you learn from scratch):

* How to build a complete Arithmetic and Logic (ALU) Unit
- Basic Logic Gates processing
- more advanced topics as Ripple Carry

* How to build a complete Control Unit to guide the ALU Operation
- Microprogramming vs. Hardwired Control Implementation

* Assembly language examples for programming the Control Unit

Is a good Technical Book in this area.

Complement the study of this book with a review of the Assembly Language Programming presented in the book "The Art of Computing Programming", Volume 1 by Donald Knuth (also, if you need more application examples of low level programming, review Volume 3 "Sorting and Searching"). This is a very good study track.


Rating: 3 out of 5
Lots of content - poor presentation
This is yet another classical textbook in a Computer Science undergraduate curriculum. It was recommended heartily by my professor (when in fact he has never used it in the course), but I chose not to buy it. And was glad about it aftewards since after reading half of it in the library I found it

1) Boring
2) Exceedingly and unnecessarily detailed
3) Poorly organized

For those of you who don't fall asleep while reading the first 200 pages, this might prove to be a good investment. Otherwise, I'd suggest taking good notes during classes and consulting online references, because this book is just not worth the price (in my opinion, of course).


Rating: 5 out of 5
Excellent introduction
If you want to understand how modern computers really work, this book is an excellent choice. The book focuses on the MIPS architecture. This is unusual, in this Intel-oriented world, but in the end, the Pentium is nothing but a RISC-computer with a complicated instruction decoder. And with the understanding you get, it will be easy to transfer your knowledge to other architectures and computers.

The book makes a fantastic job of explaining how micro-processors work, how virtual memory, cache-hierarchies, and pipelining affect your programs performance, how to optimize assembly code, how circuits combine to build the arithmetical logic units inside the CPU, and the issues involved in designing and programming for multiprocessor computers and clusters. If you are a computer programmer, or beginning hardware engineer student, this book is for you. A basic course in programming would be advantageous.

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