CSE 420/598: Computer Architecture (Spring 2007)

Lecture M, W 1:40 P.M. - 2:55 P.M. BYAC 260
Line No 11919, 16110
Instructor Sandeep Gupta
Office BY522
Email Sandeep.Gupta@asu.edu
Office Hours M, W 3:00 P.M. - 4:30 P.M.
TA Guofeng Deng (Guofeng.Deng@asu.edu)
TA Office BY517AE
TA Office Hour T 2:00 P.M. - 5:00 P.M. or by appointment



  • The overall score till right before the final has been posted here.
  • As requested, Quiz #7 and its sample solution are uploaded.
  • As requested, a list of material covered during the semester is uploaded.
  • The overall score after the midterm has been posted here.
  • The score as well as comments for Programming Assignment 1 has been posted here. Contact the TA if you have any question.


Goal and Topics
Computer architecture. Performance versus cost tradeoffs. Instruction set design. Basic processor implementation and pipelining. Instruction-level parallelism and its exploitation. Multiprocessors and thread-level parallelism. Memory hierarchy design. Storage systems. (more course information)
Prerequisite: CSE330.

The following grading rubric will be used to evaluate all the submitted material and performance tasks:
A+: Student shows superior understanding of purpose and significance of the problem; is able to identify related problems; has solved the problem using novel approach and insight.
A: Student shows good understanding of purpose and significance of the problem; is able to identify related problems; has solved the problem displaying some degree of insight.
B: Student can solve the problem with some sophistication but is unable to judge its importance.
C: Student lacks understanding of how to approach the problem or proposes very naive solutions for the problem.

The final letter grade will be assigned based on weighted average of the grades obtained in the following categories:

Assignments : 40%
Quiz : 20%
Midterm Exam : 20%
Final Exam : 20%

1) Assignments include written and programming assignments; knowledge of C and Assembly Language programming is assumed.
2) Quizzes can be unannounced.
3) Graduate students are expected to demonstrate a deeper understanding of the subject material. At times, graduate students will be assigned more challenging assignments and exam problems.

Notice: the above description is not finalized and subject to change. Student should check back this page on a regular basis.


Assignment Points Date Assigned Due Date Files
    #1 Wed 01/31/2007 Wed 02/07/2007 H1
    #2 Mon 03/05/2007 Mon 03/19/2007 (10% bonus) Question: Chapter 2 Case Study 1
Mon 03/26/2007
    #3 Mon 03/05/2007 Mon 03/26/2007 (15% bonus) Question: Chapter 3 Case Study
Mon 04/02/2007 (5% bonus)
Mon 04/09/2007
    #1 Mon 02/19/2007 Wed 02/28/2007 (extended) P1,history.txt, ph4e_branch.c
Mid-term 1:40-2:55PM, Wednesday, March 28th
Final exam 2:40-4:30PM, Wednesday, May 9th



Week Class # Date Topics Materials
1 1 01/17 Introduction to Class;
2 2 01/22 Current challenges in CA; relationship between ISA and CA, Qualitative design principles lec02-intro
3 01/24 Role of Performance, Tracking Technological Trends lec03-Ch1
3 4 01/29 Quantifying Cost, Energy Consumption, Performance, and Dependability; Comparing Performance lec04-Ch1
5 01/31 Quiz 1 on Chapter 1
4 6 02/05 Pipelining Basics lec05-AppA-pipe-basics
7 02/07 Pipelining Hazards lec06-AppA-pipe
5 8 02/12 ILP - Loop Unrolling lec07-Ch2-ILP
9 02/14 Transistors, Maufacturing process; ILP - Static Branch Prediction lec08-Ch2-ILP
6 10 02/19 ILP - Dynamic Branch Prediction lec09-Ch2-ILP-BP
11 01/22 ILP - Dynamic Branch Prediction- BTB lec10-Ch2-ILP-BTB
7 12 02/26 ILP - Dynamic Scheduling - Tomasulo's Algorithm lec11-Ch2-ILP-DS-Tomasulo
13 02/28 March Schedule, Guest Lecture lec12
8 14 03/05 Tumasulo Review, Speculation, Quiz 4 lec13-Ch2-ILP-Speculation
15 03/07 Tumasulo with Speculation, Multiple Issue lec14-Ch2-ILP-Multiple-Issue
9 Spring break
10 16 03/19 HW2 Discussion
17 03/21 Quiz, HW2 discussion
11 18 03/26 Midterm review about midterm
19 03/28 Midterm
12 20 04/02 Limits of ILP lec15-Ch3-ILP-Limits
21 04/04 Midterm One-to-One Meeting
13 22 04/09 Limits of ILP/ SMT lec16-Ch3-ILP-Limits-SMT
23 04/11 Motivation MP (Mutlicore), Intro. to Parallel Programming lec17-Ch4-MP-PP
14 24 04/16 Quiz, Review Memory Hierarchy lec18-AppC-Cache
25 04/18 SMP - Cache Coherency (Snooping) Protocol lec19-Ch4-SMP
15 26 04/23 Class Presentations
27 04/25 Quiz 7
16 28 04/30 Class Presentations, Class Review and What to expect for Final Exam?




Any incidence of cheating in this class will be severely dealt with. This applies to homework assignments, programming assignments, quizzes and tests. The minimum penalty for cheating will be that the student will not obtain any credit for that particular assignment. (This means that if in a test and/or assignment a student is found have cheated, he/she will obtain zero in that test and/or assignment.) For the homework and the programming assignments students may discuss the problems with others, but one is expected to turn in the results of one's own effort (not the results of a friend's efforts). One tends to get very suspicious if two identically wrong results show up in the homework assignment and/or tests. The names of the offenders will be maintained in the departmental files. The repeat offenders may be debarred from the University.

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