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Extra resources for Planning a computer system : Project Stretch
Each of these channels can handle informat,ion a t a rate of over 500,000 bits per second. The exchange as a whole can reach a peak data rate of 6 million information bits per second. A wide variety of input-output units can be operated by the exchange. These include card readers and punches, printers, magnetic tapes, operator's consoles, and typcwriter inquiry stations. Several of some kinds of units can be attached to a single exchange channel; of the several units on a single channel, only one can be operated a t a time.
An offset can be specified in every instruction, and there is no need for separate instructions to shift the contents of the accumulator. A significant feature of the VFL DIVIDE operation is that it will produce meaningful results regardless of the magnitude of the dividend or the divisor (provided these fall within the bounds of numbers generally acceptable to the arithmetic unit). The only and obvious exception is a zero divisor. This greater freedom eliminates much of the scaling previously required before a DIVIDE instruction could be accepted.
The look-ahead, however, is responsible for storing all results for both units, so that permanent modification of stored information is done in the proper logical sequence. Interlocks in the look-ahead unit ensure that nothing is altered permanently until all preceding instructions have been executed successfully. 1 1. Arithmetic Unit The arithmetic unit consists of a parallel and a serial section. The parallel section essentially performs floating-point arithmetic a t high speed, and the serial section performs fixed-point arithmetic and logical operations on fields of variable length.