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CS 233 - Computer Architecture

Spring 2021

Computer ArchitectureCS233AL161689ONL40900 - 1050 M W    Geoffrey Lindsay Herman
Eric James Cao
Shuhan Wang
Suleman Mahmood
Computer ArchitectureCS233AL261827ONL41100 - 1250 M W    Geoffrey Lindsay Herman
Arjun Senthil Arun
Benjamin Tu
Hung Quoc Tran
Computer ArchitectureCS233ALP70584ONL40900 - 1050 M W    Geoffrey Lindsay Herman
Eric James Cao
Shuhan Wang
Suleman Mahmood
Computer ArchitectureCS233ALR70586ONL41100 - 1250 M W    Geoffrey Lindsay Herman
Arjun Senthil Arun
Benjamin Tu
Hung Quoc Tran

Official Description

Fundamentals of computer architecture: digital logic design, working up from the logic gate level to understand the function of a simple computer; machine-level programming to understand implementation of high-level languages; performance models of modern computer architectures to enable performance optimization of software; hardware primitives for parallelism and security. Course Information: Prerequisite: CS 125 and CS 173; credit or concurrent enrollment in CS 225.


Logic and Computer Design Fundamentals,
by M. Morris Mano and Charles R. Kime. (Published by Prentice-Hall), 2008.
Fourth Edition 2008 ISBN: 0-13-198926-X

Computer Organization & Design: The Hardware/Software Interface,
by David A. Patterson and John L. Hennessy. (Published by Morgan Kaufmann)
Second Edition: 1998 ISBN: 1-55860-428-6
Third Edition: 2004 ISBN: 1-55860-604-1
Fourth Edition 2008 ISBN-13: 978-0123744937

Verilog HDL: A Guide to Digital Design and Synthesis,
by Samir Palnitkar. (Published by Prentice Hall).
Second Edition:2003 ISBN: 0-13-044911-3

Learning Goals

Learning Goal 1: be able to design modest combinational circuits (20 - 30 gates) from an natural language (e.g., English) specification (2,6)
Learning Goal 2: be able to secure data through encryption using bitwise operations (2,6)
Learning Goal 3: be able to design finite state machines of moderate complexity (~10+ states) from a natural language specification. Furthermore, they should be able to implement these FSMs using a collection of gates and flip-flops. (2,6)
Learning Goal 4. be able to analyze the design of a simple processor, specify the control signals for supported instructions, and modify it to implement new instructions. (1, 6)
Learning Goal 5: be able to translate small (20 line) C programs that include recursion and pointers into MIPS assembly, observing calling conventions and stack management. (1, 2, 6)
Learning Goal 6: be able to write code that uses memory-mapped I/O and interrupts given interface documentation. (2, 6)
Learning Goal 7: be able to demonstrate an understanding of the performance pitfalls of pipelined processors with cache memory systems by predicting the performance of code fragments on simple pipelines and cache memory systems. (1, 2, 6)
Learning Goal 8: be able to optimize the cache performance of a simple loop nest through cache-aware programming techniques (2, 6)
Learning Goal 9: be able to describe how virtual memory abstracts the memory system and provides security (2, 6)
Learning Goal 10: be able to recognize synchronization, coherence, and consistency pitfalls that could impact the execution's result or performance of simple programs executing on a shared memory parallel processor. (1, 6)
Learning Goal 11: be able to work in small groups on open ended problems (2, 5, 6)

Topic List

  1. Representation of information with binary bits (e.g., Unsigned binary, 2's complement)
  2. Combinational design (e.g., truth tables, logic gates, modular design, hierarchical design)
  3. Sequential logic design (e.g., flip-flops, finite state machines)
  4. Computer organization (e.g., register files, ALUs)
  5. Assembly language programming
  6. Input/output strategies for computer architectures
  7. Pipelining (e.g., pipeline stages plus resolving structural, data, and control hazards)
  8. Caches (e.g., block size, associativity, and optimizing code for caches)
  9. Virtual memory and disks
  10. Survey of approaches to parallelization (e.g., SIMD, multi-core, cache coherence)

Required, Elective, or Selected Elective


Last updated

4/1/2019by Geoffrey Lindsay Herman