Name: K Hopkins
Date: Around 1995
What is a math coprocessor? Why is it necessary?
A math coprocessor is a piece of hardware closely related to the CPU of a
computer. The CPU is in effect the brain of the computer. With out the CPU
the computer is just a box containing electrical connections. Sometimes
computers will use extreme amounts of CPU time to say run mathematical
calculations given it by a program. As a result it bogs down the CPU ... it
has a hard time doing other operations such as keyboard entry (typing in
letters) and the user sees a delay from the time they type in letters until
the time they are displayed on the machine because the CPU is busy doing
mathematical calculations for some other program. So the math coprocessor
was developed to free the CPU from math intensive operations and thus let
the CPU do the other operations it was intended to do such as input - output
operations and the like. The math coprocessor then takes over these math
operations and runs them. This hopefully makes the computer more efficient.