Reading Assignment and Discussion Topics
Computer Science 471

for class on Thursday Oct. 5, 2000

Please read Sections 5.1, 5.2, and the first subsection of 5.3 (``Creating a Single Datapath'') of the Patterson & Hennessy text, and be prepared to discuss the following issue:

This class begins a set of four on the MIPS processor implementations of Chapter 5. We will construct a simple MIPS processor datapath (somewhat like the EDSAC datapath of the very first class) and then run some instructions through it to see how it really works. Please think about how the different instruction types--arithmetic, loads, stores, branches--use different parts of the datapath, and how these quite different instructions use the datapath in very similar ways.

What about floating-point? Floating-point instructions come out of the instruction memory like any other instructions--where should the floating-point hardware be, and how should it be hooked up with the integer datapath? How would a floating-point load instruction work?