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What exactly is a CPU?



What exactly is a CPU?

So, you’ve probably ended up here as you wish to learn more about the ever advancing world of computing. So what better to start off on than the CPU.

The CPU in any system is what people call the ‘brains’ of any electronic system. It runs what’s called a program, which essentially is a database of instructions for the appliance to run smoothly and to the best of it’s potential.
CPU’s come in a variety of sizes dependant on the programme size. You may know of these well-known companies who make and distribute CPU’s:01(1)



What Does CPU Stand for?
The term CPU is an abbreviation for the word ‘Central Processing Unit’ and it does exactly that. The process that a CPU uses is…
The main things a CPU is designed to do is to fetch, decode, execute and writeback.
You have an input, the process and then an output. It’s like putting bread in the toaster to make toast. It takes a specific code, processes (Modify/Changes) it and sends it to the output.
The input is everything that is put into the system (E.g. Keyboard, Digital Camera, Microphone, Magnetic Strip Reader).
The output is what data you programmed to come out of the whole process. (E.g. Speakers, Printers, Monitors).
Have a look at this diagram using numbers as an example if you don’t quite

So What Devices Actually Use a CPU?
Most commonly known to use a Central Processing Unit would be a computer but here are a few examples of products that also use CPU’s:
Digital Ballasts used for Hydroponics and plant growth.
• Mobile phones.
• ATM/Cash Machines.
• Aircrafts.
• Home Alarms.
• Microwaves.

Where Does The CPU Go?
The CPU is fitted within a motherboard. A motherboard is a circuit board which is printed. Its main use is to connect and hold all the different parts of a computer system. This is essentially what holds together the components within a computer and pieces are melded on with ‘solder’.
Solder is a metal substance that is highly conductive. They use solder as it’s doesn’t restrict the transfer of electricity through the motherboard, as to power up the other components such as the CPU, Processer etc. without any hindering.
Sometimes they use what’s called a resistor. A resistor is a small component that can slow down, or stop the flow of electricity towards another part of the board. This is essential if you want the current getting to the right places at the right voltage, or to stop electricity flow to an unwanted area.

I hope this has helped you learn a little more about CPU’s and their role in everyday technology use.

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