EEE 426: Microprocessor Architecture (3 credit hours)
Computer system design: instruction set design, pipelining techniques,
cache and virtual memory operation; specialized architectures for
signal processing and communications.
Computer Architecture: A Quantitative Approach by John L. Hennessy and David A. Patterson,
VLSI Digital Signal Processors by V. K. Madisetti. IEEE Press.
MIT Open Courseware for 6.823 Computer System Architecture
Prerequisites by Course
1. EEE 226 Assembly Language Mircropocessor-Intel or CSE 230: Computer Organization and
2. EEE 304: Signals and Systems II.
Students develop an understanding of modern computer architectures as applied to microprocessors
and DSP processors. The focus is on understanding concepts in pipelining and memory hierarchy
and using them effectively in the design of a wide class of architectures.
1. Students understand and evaluate architectural performance measures.
2. Students understand instruction set design for microprocessors, DSP processors etc.
3. Students understand pipelining techniques and hazards.
4. Students understand cache and virtual memory operation.
5. Students understand the specialties of DSP processors, superscalar processors and VLIW
6. Students understand the design of ASICs used for signal processing and communications
Major Topics Covered in the Course
1. Fundamentals of microprocessor design; the impact of VLSI and scaling on computer
architecture; quantifiable performance measurement
2. Instruction set basics: addressing modes, operand types; case studies in digital signal processors
and multimedia extensions
3. Pipelining: simple instruction pipelining, pipeline hazards; basics of branch prediction and out-
4. Memory hierarchy: Cache basics: locality, associativity, timing and pipeling; Virtual memory:
fast address translation using TLBs.Data representation and arithmetic
5. DSP processor architecture; superscalar processors; VLIW machines
6. Case Studies in ASICs for signal processing (DFT, Filters) and communications (Viterbi)
Lecture: Three hours per week
Prepared by: C. Chakrabarti and L. Clark; April 2005.