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Thread: What are processors programmed in?

  1. #1 What are processors programmed in? 
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    The progress of microprocessors from single to multi-core is creating a new demand for programmers who can deal with such matters. I'm curious - what's the programming language for microprocessors? Machine language?

    http://www.economist.com/displayStor...ry_id=11361185


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    Forum Masters Degree SuperNatendo's Avatar
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    Machine language, which is the binary 1's and 0's the processor actually processes. Assembly language allows for a slightly more human friendly program since it allows the use of hexadecimal and a minimalistic syntax.

    Here is a wiki article that goes into much more depth:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Assembly_language


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  4. #3 Re: What are processors programmed in? 
    Forum Sophomore CShark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LegalEagle
    The progress of microprocessors from single to multi-core is creating a new demand for programmers who can deal with such matters. I'm curious - what's the programming language for microprocessors? Machine language?

    http://www.economist.com/displayStor...ry_id=11361185
    Assembler. AFAIK programming in machine language is simply not done/impossible. It would be similar to programming a high level language by manipulating the stack and registers directly; just not done.
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    Forum Masters Degree bit4bit's Avatar
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    I would assume assembly is used initially by the programmers, and then assembled into machine code. I don't think many people could program a quad core intel in machine code. It might be that even higher level languages are used, and then compiled into machine code.

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    Forum Sophomore CShark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bit4bit
    I would assume assembly is used initially by the programmers, and then assembled into machine code. I don't think many people could program a quad core intel in machine code. It might be that even higher level languages are used, and then compiled into machine code.

    CShark, just beat me too it.
    Yep, Assembler is the syntax used to compile down to the lowest possible level. C and C++ compilers do the same: if you decompile a C program, you are left with LDA, LDX etc. statements, manipulating bytes or bits one at a time.
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  7. #6 Re: What are processors programmed in? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by LegalEagle
    The progress of microprocessors from single to multi-core is creating a new demand for programmers who can deal with such matters. I'm curious - what's the programming language for microprocessors? Machine language?

    http://www.economist.com/displayStor...ry_id=11361185
    Assembly for you. Circuits for making the microprocessors work all together.
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  8. #7 Re: What are processors programmed in? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ryon
    Quote Originally Posted by LegalEagle
    The progress of microprocessors from single to multi-core is creating a new demand for programmers who can deal with such matters. I'm curious - what's the programming language for microprocessors? Machine language?

    http://www.economist.com/displayStor...ry_id=11361185
    Assembly for you. Circuits for making the microprocessors work all together.
    Actually, it has nothing to do with circuits. The only difference from a programmer's point of view is 'threading', that is, the ability to code more than one thread (or action). On multicore systems, each CPU can process its own thread of commands in real time. If you have a dual core, and the software supports dual-threaded funcionality, then theoretically the program will run twice as fast as on a single core.

    I have not noticed a huge increase in most apps from my newer dual-core machine over my old single core system, except with two apps that I use: Lightwave and Photoshop. Most programs, being written for one cpu, are no faster with two.
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