Generally speaking, the microcontroller is inactive for the most part and just waits for some external signal in order to takes its role in a show. This can cause some problems in case batteries are used for power supply. In extreme cases, the only solution is to set the whole electronics in sleep mode in order to minimize consumption. A typical example is a TV remote controller: it can be out of use for months but when used again it takes less than a second to send a command to TV receiver. The AT89S53 uses approximately 25mA for regular operation, which doesn't make it a pover-saving microcontroller. Anyway, it doesn’t have to be always like that, it can easily switch the operating mode in order to reduce its total consumption to approximately 40uA. Actually, there are two power-saving modes of operation:Idle and Power Down.