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von Neumann architecture

Before the von Neumann architecture, computers were designed with separate memory units for instructions and data. This made reprogramming the computer difficult and time-consuming, often requiring physical rewiring.

The vN arch stored program concept allowed both instructions and data to be stored in the same memory, making it much easier to reprogram the computer by simply changing the contents of the memory. This made computers much more flexible.

The same computer could be used for different tasks simply by loading a new program into memory rather than requiring specialized hardware for each task. The von Neumann architecture provided a simple and elegant design that could be easily understood and implemented.

This simplicity made it possible to build computers more efficiently and at a lower cost. The von Neumann architecture is a universal computing model, meaning that any computation that any other computer can do can also be done by a von Neumann machine with sufficient memory and time.

This universality made it possible to develop various software tools and programming languages that could be used across different computers. Nearly all modern computers, from desktop PCs to smartphones, are based on the basic principles of the von Neumann architecture, with various enhancements and optimizations.