Microprocessors are found in many computer systems, from complex workstations with enhanced graphics facilities, to simple controllers inside household products like washing machines. Although the precise configuration and facilities of each system differ, many of the features are common. The aim of this book, therefore, is to introduce various microprocessor systems and describe how they operate. The intention is to be quite general, introducing fundamental concepts which are common to most microprocessor systems, and then to describe how they are implemented in two particular microprocessors, thereby providing comparisons of many features which are found in practice. The first stage is to consider what a microprocessor is, and what it does.
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