I am currently reading From Nand to Tetris (aka The Elements of Computing Systems) - highly recommended. Anyway, in the last chapter (which deals with operating systems) it says:

Some functions are hardware supported (like addition) and are performed by the ALU, other functions are supplied with the programming language's libraries, and some are supplied by the operating system.

Which are the ones of the last type - operating system function? Can someone please give any example as to what functions modern OS supply?

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    I think this basically means the APIs an operating system provides for programming languages. For example, the operating system might provide you with an API to open files for reading and writing, or open a socket to push data over the network. – slhck May 21 '12 at 11:41
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    What is the context of this sentence? It is a bit weird to say it this way, because your access to operating system functions are generally via a library provided through the programming language you are using. Is it purely referring to math? – Paul May 21 '12 at 11:55
  • Hmm. The OS provides a source of random numbers which could be considered a math related function. – Paul May 21 '12 at 11:58
  • They aren't really "random" – cutrightjm May 21 '12 at 12:34
  • CISC vs RISC and other interesting topics: amazon.com/Microprocessors-Programmers-View-Computing-Works/dp/… – Aki May 21 '12 at 16:24

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