A silicon chip that contains a CPU. In the world of personal computers, the terms microprocessor and CPU are used interchangeably. At the heart of all personal computers and most workstations sits a microprocessor. Microprocessors also control the logic of almost all digital devices, from clock radios to fuel-injection systemsfor automobiles.
Three basic characteristics differentiate microprocessors:
Instruction set: The set of instructions that the microprocessor can execute.
bandwidth : The number of bitsprocessed in a single instruction.
clock speed : Given in megahertz (MHz), the clock speed determines how many instructions per second the processor can execute.
In both cases, the higher the value, the more powerful the CPU. For example, a 32-bit microprocessor that runsat 50MHz is more powerful than a 16-bit microprocessor that runs at 25MHz.
In addition to bandwidth and clock speed, microprocessors are classified as being either RISC (reduced instruction set computer) or CISC(complex instruction set computer).
See the Microprocessor Comparison Chart page in the Quick Referencesection of
Short for micro-electromechanical systems, the name for a micro fabrication technology used in making systems-on-a-chip (SoC) that embeds mechanical devices such as fluid sensors, mirrors, actuators, pressure and temperature sensors, vibration sensors and valves in semiconductor chips. MEMS combine many disciplines, including physics, bioinformatics, biochemistry, electrical engineering, optics and electronics. Typical MEMS devices combine sensing, […]
Also called a minisite, a microsite is a separate page of a Web site that has a separate URL than its home page and is used to provide information about and/or promote something that is related to the home page. For example, a museum’s Web site may have a link to a microsite with information […]
)The insertion of variable-sized spaces between letters to justify text. Some word processors are capable of microspacing. To print microspaced text, however, you need an ink-jet or laser printer. Most daisy-wheel printers and inexpensive dot-matrix printers are not capable of microspacing.
(mid´&l-wār) (n.) Software that connects two otherwise separate applications. For example, there are a number of middleware products that link a database system to a Web server. This allows users to request data from the database using forms displayed on a Web browser, and it enables the Web server to return dynamic Web pages based […]
One thousandth of a second. Access times of hard disk drives are measured in milliseconds, usually abbreviated as ms.