Machine Code, Global memory, the Stack and the Heap

Today we have progressed so far that we have computers with multiple ‘cores’ (in fact complete processors) on a single chip. But one way to understand the fundamentals of computers is to analyse far simpler computers from the past.  This section will review those very fundamental concepts in terms of each of the following:

  • a hypothetical programmable calculator
  • one of the very first ever popular ‘mini-computers’
  • the PDP-8 from 1965
  • and the Intel 8080 cpu from 1974 that still influences the instructions of intel Xenon and ‘Core’ processors in 2017 .

The JavaScript (with Kotlin source code) version of the ‘hypothetical programmable calculator’ is available here.  I will also add links to emulators for the PDP 8 and 8080.



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