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Unformatted text preview: -end unix workstations. Popular RISC processors used in workstations
are ALPHA (used in DEC-ALPHA workstations), RIOS (used in IBM workstations),
SPARC used in SUN workstations), and PA-RISC (used in HP workstations). RISC
processors are also used extensively in printers and other intelligent devices that have
their own internal processors.
Whether CISC or RISC technology will be the basis of most future processors has yet to
be determined. Supporters of RISC technology claim that the limitations of a reduced
instruction set are easily offset by the increased processing speed and the lower cost of
RISC processors. But critics of RISC technology are of the opinion that more of these
simple programmed instructions must be processed to complete a task, and an additional
burden is thus placed on system software. The debate is still on and there seems to be no
clear cut answer as to which technology is better. The answer may be that each
technology lends itself best to certain applications, and so both technologies will coexist
and be used where they are most efficient.
EPIC Processors The Explicitly Parallel Instruction Computing (EPIC) technology is fast emerging as the
technology for next-generation processors. Hewlett-Packard and Intel Corporation have
already adopted it in defining their new 64-bit Instruction Set Architecture (ISA),
popularly known as IA-64. Processors based on IA-64 design will be simpler and more
powerful than traditional CISC or RISC processors. These processors are mainly targeted
to next-generation 64-bit high-end server and workstation market (not for personal
computer market). The first processor based on IA-64, code-named Itanium (previously
Merced), is an Intel product. It is believed that IA-64 based processors will surpass the
performance of today's conventional RISC processors, but will protect customers'
software investments by remaining backward compatible with IA-32 based processors
(processors based on 32-bit Instruction Set Architecture).
The three key features of EPIC technology targeted towards improved performance as
compared to today's processors are...
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- Spring '14