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CPU

CPU is a well-known acronym in the computing world, but what is in them? Learn more about CPUs, including the newest processors and the technology behind CPU speed.

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Why are there limits on CPU speed?

A microprocessor will perform without error when executed at or below the maximum indicated speed. Why can't they speed them up? There are two things that limit a chip's speed.


Is Moore's Law outdated?

As manufacturers struggle to find new ways to cram transistors on computer chips, it would seem that Gordon Moore's famous prediction will one day fizzle out. Should we retire Moore's Law?

How Sandy Bridge Works

Chasing Moore's Law requires a lot of research and development. Intel's Sandy Bridge processor architecture follows on the heels of Nehalem and Westmere chips. What makes Sandy Bridge different?

What is computing power?

When people speak of supercomputers, they often talk about how powerful the machines are. But just what is computing power, and what makes one type of machine more powerful than another?

How Moore's Law Works

According to Moore's Law, computer processors double in complexity every two years. Is this really a law, and who is Gordon Moore, anyway?

How the Nehalem Microprocessor Microarchitecture Works

Like clockwork, microprocessor manufacturers develop new and better chips to power our computers. What makes Intel's Nehalem chip so different?

How small can CPUs get?

Advances in technology have allowed microprocessor manufacturers to double the number of transistors on a CPU chip every two years. How long can they keep this up?

Can computer chips be air-conditioned?

It takes a pretty big AC unit to lower the temperature of your entire house or apartment. And while you may not think about keeping your computer cool, it can overheat, too. Is there an air conditioner small enough to cool a computer chip?

How Utility Computing Works

Utility computing lets you pay as you go for your company's computing needs. Would you be willing to let someone else take care of your hardware and software?

How Parallel Processing Works

People are switching to parallel processing to share big computing jobs between several smaller, less-expensive chips. But how does each processor know what to work on?

How Shared Computing Works

Instead of installing a supercomputer in your home, what if you bought many regular computers? That's the idea behind shared computing. But how does it work?