Intel delivers a crash course on modern CPU architectures – How does a CPU work?

Intel delivers a crash course on modern CPU architectures - How does a CPU work?

Intel delivers a crash course on modern CPU architectures – How does a CPU work?

What is a CPU, what does it do, and what makes new processors better than their older counterparts? These are the questions that Intel wants to answer with their new “Architecture All Access” series, where Intel plans to detail the inner workings of its technology in a way that’s understandable to the masses. 

With competition between CPU markers being stronger than ever, it is vital that consumers know which products are best for them. That requires knowledge of how CPUs work and what they need to meet their requirements. 

In their two-part Architecture All Access series, Intel’s Boyd Phelps, their CVP of client engineering, dives deeply into the history of processors and what it takes to create a modern CPU. 

Part one of the series broadly covers what CPUs do and how they have evolved, from house-sized computers, with literal bugs, to the ultra-compact processors of today. The video also covers topics such as computing abstraction layers and the concept of an Instruction Set Architecture (ISA).

Part 2 of the series covers microarchitectural concepts, like pipelines, speculation, branch prediction, and other CPU building blocks. This video details many of the areas that improve within modern processors on a generation-by-generation basis. Changes to these building blocks are what typically allows CPUs to improve with every hardware generation. 

If you want to understand how CPUs work and complex topics like branch prediction, these videos are a great place to start. Yes, they are simplistic in many areas, but they are more than enough to give watchers a broad understanding of how CPUs work and how they are changing over time. 

You can join the discussion on Intel’s CPU architecture deep dive on the OC3D Forums.