Optimizing The Data Center With PCI Express 4.0


PCI Express (Peripheral Component Interconnect Express), also known as PCIe, is a high-speed serial computer expansion bus standard designed to replace older PCI, PCI-X and AGP bus standards. Officially launched in 2003, PCIe was rapidly adopted by chip, system and software designers and emerged as the dominant interface standard for connecting peripherals to the CPU. Modern CPUs rely on the... » read more

Big Challenges, Changes For Debug


By Ann Steffora Mutschler & Ed Sperling Debugging a chip always has been difficult, but the problem is getting worse at 7nm and 5nm. The number of corner cases is exploding as complexity rises, and some bugs are not even on anyone's radar until well after devices are already in use by end customers. An estimated 39% of verification engineering time is spent on debugging activities the... » read more

More Volatility Ahead


The entire semiconductor industry had a wild ride on the stock market this week, plunging on Wednesday and recovering on Thursday. This is just a sign of things to come. The cause of this week's volatility can be tied directly to a Morgan Stanley report, which said that NAND prices have peaked and will begin dropping at the beginning of 2018 because supply has caught up with demand. The repo... » read more

Power/Performance Bits: Oct. 17


Harvesting body heat Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology developed a flexible, wearable thermoelectric generator that can harvest energy from body heat to power simple biosensors. Thermoelectric generators have been available for decades, but standard designs use inflexible inorganic materials that are too toxic for use in wearable devices. The team's device uses thousands... » read more

The Week In Review: Design


Storage Western Digital uncorked disk drives based upon microwave-assisted magnetic recording technology. MAMR technology is one of two energy-assisted technologies the company has under development, the other being heat-assisted magnetic recording. Of the two, Western Digital said only MAMR has achieved the reliability required in data centers. The company noted that densities of its MAMR dev... » read more

New Materials For Computing


The U.S. Department of Energy rolled out a new program to develop materials for "extreme conditions" for high-performance computing, setting the stage for much more mobile versions of AI and machine learning. This effort, if successful, has interesting implications on a number of levels. For one, the DOE's mandate includes everything from energy security to weaponry, and high-performance com... » read more

Industry Heavyweights Eye High-Speed DDR4 Server DIMM Chipsets


DDR3 server DIMM chipsets (800 Mbps) first hit the market in 2006 and began to ramp the following year. By the time DDR4 server DIMM chipsets (2133) began shipping in 2014, DDR3 server DIMM chipsets were spanning the following five speeds: 800, 1066, 1333, 1600 and 1866. In the last years, DDR4 buffer chipset shipments have crossed over in term of volume, with DDR4 chipset speeds expected to... » read more

Thinking Much Bigger


For the better part of the past decade the focus has been on integrating an increasing number of smaller components on a piece of silicon. It's time to start thinking much bigger. While there is still plenty of work to be done building more powerful processors, or networks of connected processors on a chip or in a package, new opportunities are opening up in markets such as automotive, medic... » read more

Light In A Package


Silicon photonics is gaining significant traction inside the data center, but creating a simpler method of packaging the laser with other circuitry remains a stumbling block for cutting costs and using this technology across a wider swath of applications. Progress does appear to be on the horizon, even though exact time frames remain unclear. The advantages of light in communications are wel... » read more

NVDIMM Market Buoyed By Evolving Data Center Demands


The NVDIMM market A recent report published by Transparency Market Research (TMR) confirms that the global Non-Volatile Dual In-line Memory Module (NVDIMM) market is being propelled by an increased demand for advanced data center infrastructure. Indeed, NVDIMMs offer fault-tolerant data integrity, while simultaneously optimizing the performance of storage and cache, as well as indexing, messag... » read more

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