The number of MIPS (million instructions per second) is a general measure of computing performance and, by implication, the amount of work a larger computer can do. For large servers or mainframes, MIPS is a way to measure the cost of computing: the more MIPS delivered for the money, the better the value. Historically, the cost of computing measured in the number of MIPS has been reduced by half on an annual basis for a number of years.
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The number of MIPS attributed to a computer is usually determined by one or more benchmark runs.