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Computing (FOLDOC) dictionary
Halt and Catch Fire
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humour, processor (HCF) Any of several undocumented and
semi-mythical machine instructions with destructive
side-effects, supposedly included for test purposes on several
well-known architectures going as far back as the IBM 360.
The Motorola 6800 microprocessor was the first for which
an HCF opcode became widely known. This instruction caused
the processor to toggle a subset of the bus lines as
rapidly as it could; in some configurations this could
actually cause lines to burn up.