3 How computers work

In this chapter:

  • You learn the details of how code is executed on the CPU
  • You learn about the functions and goals of the runtime system
  • You learn how to choose hardware suitable for your problem

Twenty years ago, a working programmer could go for years without encountering a system that had more than two processing resources. Today, even a mobile phone has multiple processing resources. A modern programmer’s mental model needs to encompass multiple processes running on different processing resources at the same time.

When describing concurrent algorithms, it is not necessary to know the specific programming language to implement a program. It is necessary, however, to understand the features of the computer system on which ...

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