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An assembly language (or assembler language) is a low-

(0,1,2,39,A,B,C,D,E,F) called hex digits

level programming language for a computer, or other

programmable device, in which there is a very strong Positional number systems

(generally one-to-one) correspondence between the

Decimal, binary and hexadecimal are all

language and the architecture's machine code

positional number systems.

instructions.

In a positional number system, each position is

Assembly language is converted into executable

associated with a different weight.

machine code by a utility program referred to

as an assembler; the conversion process is Ex. In the Decimal number 25.4, the weights of

referred to as assembly, or assembling the the three positions, from right to left, are 1/10, 1, and

code. 10.

Assembly language uses a mnemonic to represent each 2 5 . 4

low-level machine instruction or operation.

10 1 1/10 weights

Wrong concepts about Assembly Language

The weight of each position determines how much the

Assembly is hard to learn. digit in that position contributes to the value of the

Assembly is hard to read and understand. number.

Assembly is hard to debug.

In a decimal number, weights increase by a

Assembly is hard to maintain.

factor of 10 from right to left from one position

Assembly language programming is time

to the next. The weight of the position to the

consuming.

immediate left of the decimal point is always 1.

Today, machines are so fast that we no

Because decimal numbers have 10 symbols (0

longer need to use assembly.

to 9), and have weights that increase by a factor

Whats Right With Assembly Language? of 10, we call decimal a base 10 or radix 10

positional number system.

Speed. Assembly language programs are

generally the fastest programs around. We call the period in a number that divides the

Space. Assembly language programs are whole part from the fractional part the radix

often the smallest. point. When we are dealing with decimal

Capability. You can do things in assembly numbers, we usually call the radix point as

which are difficult or impossible in HLLs. decimal point.

Knowledge. Your knowledge of assembly While in binary and hexadecimal

language will help you write better numbers, we can similarly call the radix point the binary

programs, even when using HLLs. point and hexadecimal point, respectively.

Number Systems Binary is the base 2 positional number system.

Humans use decimal number system but computers use Thus, in the binary number 1011.1, the weights

binary. of each position increase by a factor of 2 from

right to left. As in decimal, the position to the

Decimal numbers use 10 symbols (0,1,2,39) intermediate left of the radix point has weight

called digits. 1. thus, in the binary number 1011.1, the

weights are

Binary numbers use only two symbols (0, and 1)

called bits. 1 0 1 1 . 1

A third binary system, hexadecimal (hex for 8 4 2 1 . weights (in decimal)

short) can be used as a convenient shorthand

Hexadecimal is the base 16 positional number ( 2 1) 1 = 0 complement = 0

system. For its symbols we use 0 to 9, and A to ( 16 1) 3 = C complement = C

F. the weights in a hexadecimal number

In binary, to Flip a bit means to complement it. Thus, if

increase by a factor of 16.

we flip 1, we get 0 and if flip 0 we get 1.

Ex. In the hexadecimal number 1CB.8, the

weights are: Computer circuits are designed to operate on

1 C B . 8 chunks of data of a specific length. These

256 16 1 . 1/16 weights (in chunks of data are called words.

decimal) Common word sizes for modern computers are

The leftmost position in a positional number 32 bits ( 4 bytes) and 64 bits (8 bytes)

system has the most weight, and we call the The term positive is used for a number greater

symbol in that position as the most significant than or equal to zero. But in assembly numbers

bit.(MSB) greater or equal to zero are called non-negative

On the other hand, the right most position has numbers and those lesser than zero are

the least weight, and we call it as the least negative numbers.

significant bit.(LSB) When specifying computer memory sizes we

use the prefixes kilo (K) , mega (M) and giga (G).

Complements

But the use of this prefixes is contrary to their

The complements of a symbol (s) in the base (b) usual meanings;

positional number system is the symbol whose

value is: Prefixes Decimal Actual Memory

Equivalent sizes

( b 1) s = complement Kilo 1,000 1024

For example: the complement of 3 in decimal is (thousand)

Mega 1,000,000 1,048,576

( 10 1) 3 = 6 where 10 is the base (b) and 3 (millions)

is the symbol (s) and 6 is the complement. Giga 1,000,000,000 1,073,741,824

(billions)

Another examples are:

the complement of 3 in hexadecimal;

The rules for performing arithmetic with positional numbers are essentially the same for all bases.

In addition, whenever a column sum is greater than or equal to the number base, a carry is added to the next

column. The result is placed into the rightmost symbol of the column sum; the carry is placed to the next column.

The sum of the right column is 17, the result digit in the right column is 7 with a carry of

1 into the next column.

In subtraction, if the bottom symbol in a column is greater than the effective top symbol, a borrow from the next

column will be needed which is equal to its number base. Then it will be added to the effective top symbol to make

it greater than the bottom symbol of the column, so that the subtraction process will be possible.

Number Base Conversions

Dividing a number repeatedly by b yields remainders equal to the symbols of that number written as a base b

number.

Number Base Conversions (fractional)

To convert a fraction to a different base, we repeatedly multiply by the target base, stripping off the whole part

of the product at each step.

We continue multiplying until a fractional part equal to zero occurs.

To convert a number that has a whole part and a fractional part, we simply do each part separately.

Example.

a. To convert 14.6875 decimal to binary we convert its whole part 14 (to get 1110), we convert its fractional

part 0.6875 (to get .1011) and we then put the two results together (to get 1110.1011)

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