COSC 201                            Computer Organization                            Fall, 1999

Paper Assignment

The purpose of the short paper required for COSC 201 is to prove to me, but more importantly to yourself, that you have developed enough knowledge of computer organization so that you can read and understand an article on some aspect of computer organization.

You should browse through some journals that contain accessible articles such as BYTE, IEEE Computer, or Communications of the ACM.  Volumes of these four journals for several years are on the shelves in the Computer Science Department lounge.  These and other journals on computer hardware are in the science library.

Topics that you might consider are these:  cache schemes, something on a pipeline architecture, some of the features of the Java chips produced by SUN (a good article appeared in BYTE in 1996), MMX instructions in the pentium chips, the new HP-Intel 64 bit architecture, asynchronous CPUs (this means a CPU with no clock, an article on these appeared in IEEE Computer in 1997), or anything else you come up with.   You may find two articles which give different perspectives on the same piece of hardware or same issue.  You must use at least one journal article, but you may supplement it with information from the internet.

The length of the paper should be enough to clearly explain the architectural issue or feature which you read about.  This means at least four and up to eight pages.

Time Line:

 Nov.  10           Article selected.
                          Hand-in bibliographic reference for the article(s) you selected.

 Dec.   10           Paper due.
                          May be a traditional paper (3-5 pages) or a web page presentation of your information.