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ARM.SoC.Architecture - Preface Aims This book introduces...

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Preface Aims Audience This book introduces the concepts and methodologies employed in designing a system-on-chip (SoC) based around a microprocessor core and in designing the microprocessor core itself. The principles of microprocessor design are made con- crete by extensive illustrations based upon the ARM. The aim of the book is to assist the reader in understanding how SoCs and micro- processors are designed and used, and why a modern processor is designed the way that it is. The reader who wishes to know only the general principles should find that the ARM illustrations add substance to issues which can otherwise appear somewhat ethereal; the reader who wishes to understand the design of the ARM should find that the general principles illuminate the rationale for the ARM being as it is. Other microprocessor architectures are not described in this book. The reader who wishes to make a comparative study of architectures will find the required informa- tion on the ARM here but must look elsewhere for information on other designs. The book is intended to be of use to two distinct groups of readers: Professional hardware and software engineers who are tasked with designing an SoC product which incorporates an ARM processor, or who are evaluating the ARM for a product, should find the book helpful in their duties. Although there is considerable overlap with ARM technical publications, this book provides a broader context with more background. It is not a substitute for the manufac turer's data, since much detail has had to be omitted, but it should be useful as an introductory overview and adjunct to that data. Students of computer science, computer engineering and electrical engineering should find the material of value at several stages in their courses. Some chapters are closely based on course material previously used in undergraduate teaching; some other material is drawn from a postgraduate course. Prerequisite This book is not intended to be an introductory text on computer architecture or knowledge computer logic design. Readers are assumed to have a level of familiarity with these subjects equivalent to that of a second year undergraduate student in computer sci- ence or computer engineering. Some first year material is presented, but this is more by way of a refresher than as a first introduction to this material. No prior familiarity with the ARM processor is assumed. The ARM On 26 April 1985, the first ARM prototypes arrived at Acorn Computers Limited in Cambridge, England, having been fabricated by VLSI Technology, Inc., in San Jose,
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iv Preface California. A few hours later they were running code, and a bottle of Moet & Chan-don was opened in celebration. For the remainder of the 1980s the ARM was quietly developed to underpin Acorn's desktop products which form the basis of educational computing in the UK; over the 1990s, in the care of ARM Limited, the ARM has sprung onto the world stage and has established a market-leading position in high-performance low-power and low-cost embedded applications.
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