Q:

What is the function of the ALU?

A:

The purpose of the ALU is to perform mathematical operations such as addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. Additionally, the ALU processes basic logical operations like AND/OR calculations. Also known as the arithmetic logic unit, it serves as the computational hub of the Central Processing Unit (CPU) for a computer system.

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An ALU can be programmed to perform any series of complicated arithmetic or logical calculations. It is the computational capacity of the ALU that determines the power of a computer system’s CPU. In more complex systems, the ALU is divided into two units: the arithmetic unit (AU) and the logic unit (LU).

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