Microprocessorelectronic computer central processing unit (CPU) made from miniaturized transistors and other circuit elements on a single semiconductor integrated circuit (IC) (aka microchip or just chip).
Before the advent of microprocessors, electronic CPUs were made from discrete (separate) transistors; and before that, from vacuum tubes. There have even been designs for simple computing machines based on mechanical parts such as gears, shafts, levers, Tinkertoys, etc. Leonardo DaVinci made one such design, although none were possible to construct using the manufacturing techniques of the time.
The evolution of microprocessors have been known to follow Moore's Law when it comes to steadily increasing performance over the years.
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2 Microprocessors and architectures
3 See also
4 External links
The world's first commercial microprocessor was the 4-bit 4004, released on November 15, 1971, invented by Marcian Ted Hoff. The 4004 was later followed by the 8008. These processors are the precursors to the very successful Intel 8080, Zilog Z80, and derivative Intel 8-bit processors. The competing Motorola 6800 architecture was cloned and improved in the MOS Technology 6502, rivaling the Z80 in popularity during the 1980s.
The 8080 is the ancestor of the 16-bit Intel 8086, the first member of the x86 family which powers most modern PC type computers. Intel introduced the 8086 as a cost effective way of porting software from the 8080 lines, and succeeded in winning much business on that premise. Following up their 8086 and 8088, Intel released the 32-bit 80386 in 1985, cementing Intel's PC dominance with its processor family's backwards compatibility.
This page needs updating with post-1985 summary õP history
Microprocessors and architectures