Chapter 6. Hardware Efficiency

It’s hardware that makes a machine fast. It’s software that makes a fast machine slow.

Craig Bruce1

Hardware efficiency? But wait, I thought this was a book about software? After all, we do mention “software” twice in the title. Yes, that is a fair point, but nonetheless, software runs on hardware, and it is well worth diving a little further into. No matter if you are a seasoned hardware geek who first learned to code in assembly or someone who just sees hardware as a means to an end, this chapter has something for you.

Hardware in the context of this book means any device that can be used to run software. That covers quite a wide range of different types of devices. Especially given that some enterprising people even implemented the game Doom on a pregnancy test (thankfully not controlled using the original input method). In this chapter we will focus on the two groups of more widely ...

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