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Essential Guide to Semiconductors, The by Jim Turley

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Choosing Microprocessors

The market for microprocessors is enormously competitive. Well over 100 different 32-bit microprocessors are available, with even more 16-bit, 8-bit, and 4-bit chips competing for the low end. In all, about 1,000 different processors are competing over millions of different systems, from thermostats to thermonuclear weapons.

Paradoxically, this most technical of products competes on very nontechnical grounds. At the high end of the market, perception and advertising have a big influence on buying decisions and market success. The ultimate example is PC processors: Television advertisements urge (presumably) nontechnical viewers to buy a product they don't understand. The ads don't contain even a hint of technical material. ...

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