IEEE Computer Volume 11 Number 5 -- BOOK REVIEWS
Original Publication Date: 1978-May-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Nov-10
Software Patent Institute
Dr. Francis P. Mathur: AUTHOR [+3]
BOOK REVIEWS * B78-13 Microprogramming Primer -- Harry Katzan, Jr. (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1977, 254 pp., $17.95) * B78-14 Information & Management: The International Journal of Management Processes and Systems -- (New York: North-Holland Publishing Co., Vol. 1, No. 1, November 1977, 51 pp., $24.75/year) * B7~15 The Meaning of Computer Measurement: An Introduction to Software Physics -- Kenneth W. Kolence (Institute for Software Engineering, Inc., 1976, 445 pp., $225)
THIS DOCUMENT IS AN APPROXIMATE REPRESENTATION OF THE ORIGINAL.
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Recently published books and new periodicals may be submitted for review to the Book Reviews Editor:
Dr. Francis P. Mathur
Professor and Computer Science Coordinator Mathematics Department California State Polytechnic University 3801 West Temple Avenue Pomona, CA 91768 Telephone: (714) 5984421
(Note: publications reviewed in this section are not available from the IEEE Computer Society. Please order directly from the publisher.)
B78-13 Microprogramming Primer -- Harry Katzan, Jr. (New York: McGraw-Hill, 1977, 254 pp., $17.95)
A very common occurrence in most aspects of computer system design is a variation of the "here's how we did it" approach in which a description of some element of a computer system is given without any explanation of the rationale that led to the finished product. Discussion on considerations such as design objectives, environmental and cost constraints and the anticipated workload is often brief or non-existent.
If the subject under discussion happens to be a microprogrammed system, descriptions are often limited to diagrams of the CPU, microinstruction formats, and a statement of the effects of the permissible bit patterns in each of the microinstruction fields. Descriptions of individual microprograms and the relationship among these microprograms in their role as interpreters of the macroinstruction set are seldom available. Attempts to teach the principles of microprogramming and emulation under these circumstances can prove to be quite difficult.
This situation has been significantly improved by Katzan's Microprogramming Primer. This book is designed to provide the reader with "(1) an introduction to microprogramming concepts, /2) actual experience in writing microprograms, and /3) principles of emulation." The vehicle for the implementation of these objectives is the microprogrammed Dmachine developed by Burroughs. In Chapter 1 of the book -- Introduction to Microprogramming Concepts - - some basic ideas are introduced and a brief history of microprogramming is given. A simple, hypothetical singleaccumulator machine is introduced, and microprograms for some simple macroinstructions are given. Chapter 2 discusses fundamental subjects such as data representation, the role of various CPU registers, effective addressing, and storage mapping.
Chapter 3 presents a detailed description of the organization of the D-machine. It illustrates the use of the individual components of the logic unit, the control unit, and the memory control unit by means of the two levels of microinstru...