FLOPS

Short for floating-point operations per second, a common benchmark measurement for rating the speed of microprocessors. Floating-point operations include any operations that involve fractional numbers. Such operations, which take much longer to compute than integer operations, occur often in some applications.

Most modern microprocessors include a floating-point unit (FPU), which is a specialized part of the microprocessor responsible for executing floating-point operations. The FLOPS measurement, therefore, actually measures the speed of the FPU. One of the most common benchmark tests used to measure FLOPS is called Linpack.

Many experts feel that FLOPS is not a relevant measurement because it fails to take into account factors such as the condition under which the microprocessor is running (e.g., heavy or light loads) and which exact operations are included as floating-point operations. For this reason, a consortium of vendors created the Standard Performance Evaluation Corporation (SPEC), which provides more meaningful benchmark values.

A megaFLOPS (MFLOPS) is equal to one million floating-point operations per second, and a gigaFLOPS (GFLOPS) is equal to one billion floating-point operations per second. A teraFLOPS (TFLOPS) is equal to one trillion floating-point operations per second.

Webopedia Staff
Since 1995, more than 100 tech experts and researchers have kept Webopedia’s definitions, articles, and study guides up to date. For more information on current editorial staff, please visit our About page.

Top Articles

The Complete List of 1500+ Common Text Abbreviations & Acronyms

From A3 to ZZZ we list 1,559 SMS, online chat, and text abbreviations to help you translate and understand today's texting lingo. Includes Top...

List of Windows Operating System Versions & History [In Order]

The Windows operating system (Windows OS) refers to a family of operating systems developed by Microsoft Corporation. We look at the history of Windows...

How to Create a Website Shortcut on Your Desktop

Website Shortcut on Your Desktop reviewed by Web Webster   This Webopedia guide will show you how to create a website shortcut on your desktop using...

Generations of Computers (1st to 5th)

Reviewed by Web Webster Learn about each of the 5 generations of computers and major technology developments that have led to the computing devices that...

Adobe Spark

Adobe Spark is a suite of apps by Adobe Systems used to create...

Rendering

To render an image is to use software to convert code into a...

Fastly

Fastly is a US-based cloud computing service provider. It offers an edge cloud...