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CS220 Computer Architecture Assignment Example Maynooth University Ireland

Computer Architecture is a field of study which focuses on the design and building of computers. Architecture refers to both the physical structure of a computer system, as well as its logical design. It determines what type of data can be stored in memory, how it will interact with other hardware like hard drives or printers, and how fast it can process instructions.

This module aims to introduce the concepts of computer architecture, primarily focusing on microprocessor design. It will demystify what transistors are, how CPUs are built, what logic gates are, and how they work together.

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In this course, there are many types of assignments given to students like a group project, individual assignment, report, business plan, business proposal, executive summary, and other solutions are given by us.

On successful completion of the module, students should be able to:

Assignment Task 1: Students can expect to obtain a basic understanding of how numeric data is represented in different formats and manipulated in digital circuits and how these circuits interact to perform processing

Numeric data can be represented in different formats, depending on the number of bits that are used. The most common format is binary, which uses two bits and can represent numbers from 0 to 1,023 (2^10). Other formats include hexadecimal (base 16), which uses 16 bits and can represent numbers from 0 to 16,777,215 (2^16), and octal (base 8), which uses 8 bits and can represent numbers from 0 to 255 (2^8). The number of different values that can be represented by a particular number of bits is referred to as the “word size” of the representation.

Numeric data is manipulated in digital circuits by turning on or off certain transistors. When a transistor is turned on, it allows current to flow through it, while when it is turned off, the current is blocked. By controlling the on and off states of transistors, we can create digital values (1 or 0) that can be used to represent numbers.

Digital circuits can also be used to perform calculations. The most basic type of calculation is an addition, which is done by adding two binary numbers together. To add two numbers, we first convert them to digital form (using a technique called “bitwise addition”), then we create a circuit that will add the two numbers together and output the result.

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Assignment Task 2: Boolean Algebra is used to express, manipulate and optimize circuit design and students gain an understanding of this process through the construction and simulation of elementary circuits capable of arithmetic function operations, data storage, algorithmic sequencing, counting, selecting, and interfacing, culminating in a “mini programmable CPU”

Boolean algebra is used to describe a collection of logic circuits, where each circuit has a defined set of inputs and outputs. Each output is a function of the inputs. In the process of describing these circuits, we use Boolean variables, which have only two possible values: true or false. They are often represented by 1 and 0. The simplest kind of circuit is a logic gate, which has one or two inputs and one output. The computation performed by the circuit is governed by truth tables, which describe how the outputs will behave for each combination of input values. Logic gates are usually represented as triangles or diamonds, with an arrow pointing into or out of the vertex representing the input(s) and the output(s) represented by the line emanating from the vertex.

Logic gates can be combined to create more complex circuits. For example, the circuit below has two inputs and two outputs. The left-most output is a function of the two inputs, while the right-most output is a function of the first input and the inverted output of the left-most output.

Assignment Task 3: Students will also understand the operation of basic memory technologies and how to deal with error detection and correction in-memory systems:

Memory is a type of storage device that stores data permanently or temporarily. It is usually used to store programs and data that are being processed by a computer. Memory can be divided into two categories: primary storage and secondary storage.

Primary storage is the type of memory that is closest to the CPU. It is used to store data and programs that are currently in use. The two most common forms of primary storage are random-access memory (RAM) and read-only memory (ROM).

  • ROM is a type of memory that can only be read; it cannot be changed by the computer after the initial programming. All booting software, BIOS, and files remain in this kind of memory even after the computer is turned off.
  • RAM is a type of memory that can be read from and written to. When data is stored in RAM, it remains thereafter the power has been shut off. This makes it an ideal place for storing things such as temporary files or program data that needs to be accessed quickly by the CPU.

Secondary storage is the type of memory that is furthest from the CPU. It is used to store data and programs that are not currently in use. The two most common forms of secondary storage are hard drives and optical discs.

  • Hard drives are storage devices for personal computers. They are a type of electromechanical storage device that uses spinning disks coated with magnetic material to store data. Hard drives are slower than RAM but can store much more data.
  • Optical discs are a type of storage device that stores data on a rotating disc. The two most common types of optical discs are compact discs (CDs) and digital versatile discs (DVDs). CDs are used to store music, pictures, and software, while DVDs are used to store movies and other types of data.

Error detection and correction (EDC) is a technique used to detect and correct errors that may have been introduced into data during transmission or storage. There are two main types of EDC: parity checking and error-correcting codes (ECCs).

  • Parity checking is the use of parity bits to detect errors. The simplest example is an even/odd parity system, where each bit in a word (usually 8 or 16 bits long) is XOR-ed with its neighbor; if the number of 1s does not evenly divide by 2 (even), then the word contains at least one error.
  • ECC (Error-Correcting Codes) are much more complicated than parity bits. An ECC is a type of code in which bits are added to the data stream via an algorithm (usually, by adding redundant bits) to detect and correct errors. This extra information is usually stored in the same location as the data it protects rather than using separate storage as parity checking does.

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