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    Presentation     IT Education: Best Practices

LMMS: An 8-Bit Microcode Simulation of the Little Man Computer

Thad Crews    [a1] [a2]
Department of Management and Information Systems
Western Kentucky University    [u1] [u2]
Bowling Green, Kentucky, USA    [c1] [c2]

William Yurcik    [a1] [a2]
Department of Mathematics and Computer Science
Illinois Wesleyan University    [u1] [u2]
Bloomington, Illinois, USA    [c1] [c2]

The Little Man Computer (LMC) paradigm is a simplified but powerful model of a computer architecture containing all the components of modern computers: memory, a central processing unit (CPU), and input/output capability. This paper describes the Little Man Microcode Simulator (LMMS), a register-transfer-level simulation of the Little Man Computer. LMMS has an intuitive user interface, a complete but small instruction set for programming, and provides an interactive simulation tool for introducing students to computer organization. LMMS is built on an 8-bit architecture for multiple viewing perspectives (e.g., digital, binary, and mnemonic) and utilizes memory address/data registers to demonstrate CPU activity. LMMS also provides a detailed microcode implementation of the LMC instruction set.

Keywords: computer architecture, simulation, visualization

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