The Central Processing Unit (CPU) The Central Processing Unit or more commonly referred to as the CPU is the “brain” of the computer. This is the part of the computer which runs all the instructions required to process all the inputs to the computer and then sends out (outputs) the answers. The speed in which instructions are processed by the CPU is measured in Gigahertz (GHz) A 1 GHZ CPU can process at a speed of one thousand million (1000,000,000) cycles every second !!! The CPU is made up of 3 main parts The Control Unit (CU) The job of the CU is to manage all the activities carried out by the CPU. The Arithmetic and Logic Unit (ALU) The ALU has two parts 1. It carries out calculations (the arithmetic part) on the data. 2. It makes decisions (the logic part) e.g. is a number bigger than 10. The Immediate Access Store (IAS) The information the CPU is currently processing needs to be stored where it can be obtained very quickly. The IAS temporarily holds this data ready for the CPU.
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