The MIPS-X RISC Microprocessor

Front Cover
Paul Chow
Springer US, Oct 31, 1989 - Computers - 232 pages
The first Stanford MIPS project started as a special graduate course in 1981. That project produced working silicon in 1983 and a prototype for running small programs in early 1984. After that, we declared it a success and decided to move on to the next project-MIPS-X. This book is the final and complete word on MIPS-X. The initial design of MIPS-X was formulated in 1984 beginning in the Spring. At that time, we were unsure that RISe technology was going to have the industrial impact that we felt it should. We also knew of a number of architectural and implementation flaws in the Stanford MIPS machine. We believed that a new processor could achieve a performance level of over 10 times a VAX 11/780, and that a microprocessor of this performance level would convince academic skeptics of the value of the RISe approach. We were concerned that the flaws in the original RISe design might overshadow the core ideas, or that attempts to industrialize the technology would repeat the mistakes of the first generation designs. MIPS-X was targeted to eliminate the flaws in the first generation de signs and to boost the performance level by over a factor of five.

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About the author (1989)

Paul Chow grew up in the family of a government railroad manager. Throughout his childhood, his family moved with his father's career, from one railroad line to another. In 1937, Japan invaded China, shattering the life of this family. His mother, with four children in tow, ran for their lives, keeping barely one step ahead of the advancing enemy forces. With WWII on the doorsteps, Chow quit high school to join the Allied Forces in Burma to fight the Japanese, which by that time had occupied most of Southeast Asia. After the war, he took up fishing. But after spending nine years at sea, fisherman's life offered little challenge to him. In 1955, he bought a junk and sailed across the Pacific Ocean with five of his friends. At the age of 29, having been through fourteen different schools and no high school diploma to speak of, he enrolled in a junior college in San Francisco. After a bachelor's degree from the University of California at Berkeley he went on to obtain a PhD from Northwestern University. For the next 29 years he taught physics and astronomy in universities and did consulting in computer industry. Since retirement from California State University at Northridge in 1994, Chow has devoted full time to writing.

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