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Introduction to Computer Systems and Assembly Programming


Frank Vahid

Professor of Computer Science and Engineering
Univ. of California, Riverside

Roman Lysecky

Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Univ. of Arizona


  • Information as Bits
  • MIPS Assembly, Part 1
  • MIPS Assembly, Part 2
  • C to Assembly
  • MIPSzy Processor Design
  • Memory
  • Input / Output

Complete Table of Contents


  • Hundreds of participation activities: Questions, animations, tools
  • Seamlessly integrated auto-generated and auto-graded challenge activities
  • Provides an exceptionally approachable introduction to computer organization
  • Uses an elegant simple MIPS subset called MIPSzy, which is great for learning
  • Exceptionally hands-on learning: Integrated MIPSzy and MIPS simulator
  • Shows full design of MIPSzy, plus complete behavioral and structural Verilog

The zyBooks Approach

Describes storing information as bits; introduces assembly programming on a simple yet practical MIPS subset called MIPSzy (12 instructions); shows how to translate C constructs to MIPSzy assembly; reviews digital design and designs a single-cycle MIPSzy processor; introduces memory concepts like RAM/ROM, cache, and memory hierarchy; teaches input/output concepts like memory-mapped I/O, interrupts, and arbitration. Includes a built-in MIPSzy (and MIPS) simulator, plus over 100 seamlessly-integrated auto-generated auto-graded homework exercises.