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CPU's process the data in stages, much like the way a factory works, preparing bits in one stage to be sent to the next."

Electromigration is a very damaging process that can harm a CPU, if heat is not dispussed properly. This is the process in which a CPU's transistors break down due to electrical erosion. Once the transistors erode they usually would combine with un-eroded transistors which can throw off any of the data, or math calculation the CPU was trying to perform.

To understand how a CPU works, you need to think of it as a tiny assembly line where incoming bits of data are shuffled through a series of pipes and stages until they come out the other end as a complete product. CPU's process the data in stages, much like the way a factory works, preparing bits in one area to be sent to the next. This happens at the atomic level, with individual 1ís and 0ís (binary language) through the CPU's structure. By conducting millions of operations per second the processor can do very complex mathematical operations very quickly. MHz or mega-hertz stands for the number millions of calculations a CPU can perform in 1 second. Intelís newest processor (the Pentium III) maxes out at about 500 MHz and soon 550 MHz. That means that the processor can perform 500 million operations per second. Every time the processors clock speed in boosted it can offer great performance gains. A boost from 500 MHz to 550 MHz can give about a 10% performance gain. There are mainly other factors that can impact performance though, including CPU instruction sets.

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