You have probably heard that a specific (computer) processor has such or so bits wide processor.
This number indicates how many bits a processor can handle at the same time.
This is called word length.
Hence the number of characters or bits in a word.
It is also an indication of how fast a machine is. Or
better how fast a computer can deal with a program's instructions.
For example the Intel 4004 CPU invented in 1969 (published
in 1971) has a speed of 60.000 operations per second.
A program is a collection of commands that in their
turn are a collection of instructions to the microprocessor.
Or to say it differently when you can put larger, and thus more complex, instructions to a computer's microprocessor the faster a computer can execute a command and so a program will appear to be faster.
However this is not allways the case. The processor
needs time to process a command, a word. And the longer that command
is the more time it takes to proces that command.(1)
Engineers decided that it is not always necessary to
have the full complex command list to one's disposal and created a
more symplified command structure: RISC = Reduced Instruction Set
for Computers. The advantage is obvious.
With various tricks
|Last Updated on 10-Sep-2002||For suggestions please mail the editors|
Footnotes & References
|1.||This command architecture is called CISC = Complex Instruction Set for Computers.|