Writing Simulating and Testing MIPS Assembly Code

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Using the MARS MIPS simulator tool


Problem 1: Counting Words in a Text File and Finding their Frequency

Write and test a MIPS assembly language program to count the words in a text file and compute their

frequency. The program should do the following:

■ Open a text file and read all characters into an array. The maximum number of characters to be

read should be limited to the size of the array, which should be 100,000 characters. MARS

provides the system calls for opening a file, reading from a file, etc.

■ Traverse the array character by character and detect the beginning and end of each word. A word

is defined here to contain only letters (capital or lowercase). Other characters (spaces, commas,

periods, parentheses, digits, etc.) should not be counted. Convert all letters to uppercase and

convert all non-letter symbols to white space.

■ Construct a second array to contain all unique words encountered in the first array and their

frequencies. For example, if a word appears 100 times in the first array then it should appear

once in the second array and its frequency should be 100.

■ Sort the words in the second array according to their frequency and output the top N words that

have the highest frequencies.

A sample run is shown below:

Enter input text filename: [url removed, login to view]

How many words to output: 7

Top 7 words with highest frequencies

THE 151

A 120


YOU 56

FOR 42

HAS 37



Problem 2: Matrix Multiplication and Counting Instruction Frequencies

Write and test a MIPS assembly language program to perform matrix multiplication of N by N

matrices of double-precision floating-point numbers. In your program, define the space of three

100×100 matrices, where the maximum value of N is fixed at 100. Initialize the first two matrices

from two input text files and produce the result matrix in an output text file.

The matrix data should be read from a text file in row-major order. N × N signed integers should be

read from a text file. Each integer should be read from a separate line. Prompt the user to enter the

name of the text file, then open and read the text file line by line. Each line should be converted from

an integer string to a floating-point number. You need a procedure to convert the integer string

character-by-character to a floating-point number.

Write a procedure to do matrix multiplication of N × N matrices, where N is passed to the procedure

as a parameter. All matrix operations should be done using the double-precision floating-point

instructions. The output matrix should be written to a text file. Convert each double-precision

floating-point number to an integer string. You will need a procedure to convert the floating-point

number to an integer string. Write the integer string on a separate line in the output text file. Test and

verify the matrix multiply procedure, by examining the result matrix in the output text file.

After succeeding in matrix multiplication and producing the correct result, you will analyze the

MIPS code of the matrix multiply procedure, to have a better understanding of instruction

frequencies. You will count the dynamic number of instructions that are executed at runtime to

determine their frequencies in the matrix multiply procedure. You need a total of four counters to

count instructions for the following classes of instructions:

■ Class 1 is for ALU instructions

■ Class 2 is for floating-point instructions

■ Class 3 is for load and store instructions

■ Class 4 is for branch and jump instructions

You will augment the code of the matrix multiply procedure with additional instructions to count the

original number of instructions. You need four counters. At the beginning of the procedure, initialize

all counters to zeros. Before each instruction, insert additional instructions to count that instruction.

For example, if the original instruction is addiu then increment the counter of ALU instructions

before the instruction itself. If the same instruction is executed 100 times (in different loop

iterations), it will be counted as 100. Count only the real instructions. For pseudo-instructions, count

the equivalent real instructions. Make sure that your additional code does not interfere with the

original program code. Count only the original instructions of the matrix multiply procedure, not the

new ones that you have added. Display the statistics that you have produced. A sample run is show


Enter the matrix size N: 10

Enter the first matrix filename: [url removed, login to view]

Enter the second matrix filename: [url removed, login to view]

Enter the result matrix filename: [url removed, login to view]

Counting Instructions in the Matrix Multiply Procedure:

Total instructions = ???

ALU instructions = ??, Percentage = ?%

Floating-Point instructions = ??, Percentage = ?%

Load & Store instructions = ??, Percentage = ?%

Branch & Jump instructions = ??, Percentage = ?%


Problem 3: Single-Precision Floating-Point Addition in Software

Write and test a MIPS assembly language program to do single-precision floating-point addition in

software rather than in hardware. The procedure floatadd should receive its input parameters in $a0

and $a1 (as single-precision floating-point numbers) and produce its result in $v0 (as singleprecision

float). You cannot use the floating-point addition instruction add.s to do the

addition. Only integer instructions are allowed. Write additional procedures, if needed, to extract the

fields, normalize, and round the result significand.

You should also make sure to handle special cases:

■ Zero, infinity, and NaN

■ Overflow and underflow

■ Denormalized numbers

Round the result to the nearest even, which is the default rounding mode in IEEE 754 standard. This

is the only rounding mode that should be supported.

Use the add.s instruction to check the result of the floating-point addition against the result produced

by the floatadd procedure to ensure correctness.

Write a main procedure to call and test the floatadd procedure. Specifically, you should ask the user

to input two floating-point numbers and to print the result.

A sample run should look as follows:

Enter 1st float: 1.25e-4

Enter 2nd float: 0.75e-3

Result of floatadd: 8.75e-4

Result of add.s: 8.75e-4


Coding and Documentation

Develop the code for the given problems with the following aspects in mind:

 Correctness: the code works properly

 Completeness: all cases have been covered

 Efficiency: the use of relevant instructions and algorithms

 Documentation: the code is well documented through the appropriate use of comments.


Report Document

The project report must contain sections highlighting the following:

■ Program Design

Specify clearly the design of each procedure giving detailed description of the algorithm

used/developed and the implementation details.

■ Program Simulation

Describe all the simulator features that you have used for simulating your code with a clear

emphasis on its advantages and limitations (if any), debugging for errors, the use of system calls

and displaying the results of the program.

■ Program Output and Discussion

Provide snapshots of the Simulator window and show all the results.

For program 1, provide input text files and show the top ten most frequently used words.

For program 2, show only the statistics that you have produced for different runs for N = 10, 20,

50, and 100. Comment on these statistics, the complexity of the Matrix Multiply procedure, and

the additional code that you inserted.

For program 3, provide sample inputs and outputs and discuss all the cases that were handled by

the floatadd procedure, such as normalized and denormalized numbers, zero, overflow, and

underflow. Also test and demonstrate rounding.

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