Johannes von Neumann
John von Neumann was born on the 28th. Born in Budapest on December 19, 1903, the son of a wealthy banking family was raised to the rank of Hungarian nobility. From an early age he showed great intelligence and was called a child prodigy. At the age of 6, von Neumann could speak Ancient Greek and divide a few 8-digit numbers in his head, and at the age of 8 he had learned differential and integral calculus. When von Neumann was 15 years old, his father made Gabor Szego his personal math teacher. In the first lesson the famous mathematician Shogyo was moved to tears after seeing the speed and skill of the young von Neumann. In addition to these incredible achievements, von Neumann had a photographic memory and was able to capture entire novels word for word.
Von Neumann has a two-year degree in chemistry from the University of Berlin and a doctorate in mathematics from the University of Pazmani-Peter. After his doctorate, von Neumann went to Göttingen to study with David Gilbert, one of the eminent mathematicians whose work contributed to the development of the computer. Von Neumann then went to the University of Princeton to hold a lifelong position at the Institute for Advanced Study. His office is only a few doors away from Albert Einstein’s, and Einstein complains that von Neumann plays too much German marching music on his desk phone.
During his stay in Princeton, von Neumann participated in the Manhattan Project. He had made numerous trips to the Los Alamos laboratory to observe the development of nuclear weapons and had played a crucial role in many phases of the design and construction of the two nuclear warheads dropped on Japan. He was killed on the 16th. In July 1945 he witnessed the first test of the atomic bomb and was a member of a committee that had to decide which two Japanese cities should be bombed. Before his participation in the Manhattan Project, von Neumann was perhaps the greatest source of inspiration for the character of Dr Strangelove in the film of the same name by Stanley Kubrick.
Dr. Strange Love
While working on the atomic bomb, von Neumann began to work on ideas that would form the basis of computer science. Von Neumann met Alan Thuring a few years ago and would have been influenced by Thuring’s work on the calculated figures. Von Neumann was of course in an excellent position, thanks to his earlier work with Gilbert, to acknowledge the importance of Turing’s work.
In 1945, in the final phase of the Manhattan Project, von Neumann told his friends and colleagues that he was thinking of an even more coherent work. On a train in Los Alamos, von Neumann wrote an essay entitled The First Draft of an EDUCAIDS Report. This 101-page document contains the design of the von Neumann architecture, which has remained the dominant paradigm of computer architecture since its introduction. Neumann’s architecture is usually associated with a computer concept with a memory program, but it also includes a 4-component design that differs from other memory program concepts.
More importantly, von Neumann’s architecture is a computer with a stored program. Computers that store programs use a block of memory to store both computer programs and data that computer programs accept as input. The design of the stored program generally contrasts with the Harvard architecture, which uses separate memory modules to store the computer program and program data.
The idea of an architecture with stored programs was tacitly presented in Turing’s work on Turing’s universal machines, because these machines are theoretical versions of computers with stored programs. Nevertheless, von Neumann acknowledged the value of the explicit construction of this house in computers. Alternative methods of computer programming required manual connection or reprogramming of the computer circuit – a process so time-consuming that computers were often built for the same function and never reprogrammed. With this new design, computers became easily reprogrammable and could run many different programs; however, access control had to be enabled to prevent certain types of programs, such as viruses, from being reprogrammed into the operating system.
The best-known structural limitation of von Neumann’s architecture is called the Von Neumann Bottleneck. The bottleneck at von Neumann is due to the memory program architecture, as data and programs share the same bus to the CPU. The transfer of information from memory to the CPU is usually much slower than the actual processing in the CPU. Neumann’s design increases the required data transfer as both the computer program and the program have to be transferred to the CPU. One of the best ways to solve this problem is to use processor caches. Processor caches act as an intermediary between the main memory and the processor. These processor caches provide small amounts of RAM near the processor core.
The architecture of von Neumann consists of four parts: a control unit, a processing unit (including the arithmetic and logic unit (ALU)), a memory unit and input/output mechanisms. I/O mechanisms include standard devices connected to computers, including keyboards as inputs and monitors as outputs. Input mechanisms are written to the memory block where computer programs and program data are stored. The control unit and the data processing unit consist of a central processor. The control unit controls the central processing according to the instructions received. The processing unit contains an ALU that performs basic or bit by bit arithmetic operations on the bit sequence. The ALU can perform many different functions. So the function of the control unit is to guide the ALU to perform the right function on the right line.
Architecture by Neumann
With the introduction, von Neumann became a standard computer architecture and the Harvard architecture was changed to microcontrollers and signal processing. The architecture of von Neumann is still in use today, but more recent and complex projects inspired by von Neumann’s architecture have overshadowed the original architecture’s popularity.