A proposed new high level abstraction for computer technology
Association for Computing Machinery, Inc.
Faculty of Computing, Health and Science
School of Computer and Information Science
Computer technology can be described using a range of models based on different levels of detail e.g. semiconductors, transistors, digital circuits. Such models are designed to progressively hid irrelevant detail and yet provide sufficient information to be useful for communication, design and documentation. However, developments in computer technology have resulted in a low cost, heterogeneous modular architecture that is difficult to model using current methods. This paper proposes a new generic method of modeling computer technology at a higher level of abstraction than those currently used. Investigations to date indicate that this model is independent of architectural detail and can therefore accommodate changes in technology. This new model is more directly relevant to the cheap, low-cost modular architectures in use today. Furthermore, all work to date has strongly indicated it may be useful as the basis of a new pedagogical framework for teaching not only introductory but also more advanced computer technology.