Power Options And Issues

In the quest to get SoC power right as early as possible in the design flow, it still holds true that the biggest impact occurs at the beginning of the project, with diminished results as a design progresses through the flow toward tapeout. [getentity id="22186" e_name="ARM's"] big.LITTLE architecture has gained a lot of traction here, prompting MediaTek to introduce its Tri-Gear big.Medium.... » read more

MediaTek Grabs Another Gear

Today, it seems to be all the rage for automotive manufacturers to try to continuously one up the competition by announcing a new transmission that has more gears or “speeds." (Popular Mechanics did a nice article about why you would want more gears.) Basically, transmission designers want to keep the engine operating at or near its peak operating efficiency point and extend the operating ran... » read more

How the Internet of Things Drives More Diverse Design Considerations

Last week I was in Taiwan, presenting at and attending CDNLive. It is always great to see the local progress. MediaTek presented on their adoption of Perspec System Verifier, highlighting how they increased throughput of test generation from 1 to 100 test cases per hour. Realtek reported on their use of JasperGold technology, as well as on their Palladium adoption, achieving between 30x to 50x ... » read more

The Week In Review: Design

Tools Mentor Graphics uncorked the latest version of its Catapult high-level synthesis platform, adding a formal-based C Property Checker tool to automatically identify and formally prove hard-to-find issues like uninitialized memory, divide by 0, and array bounds errors in the users' HLS C++/SystemC model. IP ARM unveiled the Cortex-A73 and Mali-G71 processors. According to ARM, the g... » read more

10nm Versus 7nm

The silicon foundry business is heating up, as vendors continue to ramp their 16nm/14nm finFET processes. At the same time, they are racing each other to ship the next technologies on the roadmap—10nm and 7nm. But the landscape is complicated, with each vendor taking a different strategy. [getentity id="22865" e_name="Samsung"], for one, plans to ship its 10nm [getkc id="185" kc_name="fi... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing

SUNY Polytechnic Institute (SUNY Poly) and GlobalFoundries announced the establishment of a new Advanced Patterning and Productivity Center (APPC). The $500 million, 5-year program will accelerate the introduction of extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography technologies into manufacturing. The center is located at the Colleges of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CNSE) in Albany, N.Y. -------... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing

Qualcomm recently announced the new Snapdragon 820. The cell-phone chipset is based on Samsung Electronics’ new 14nm LPP (Low-Power Plus) process, the second-generation of the company’s 14nm finFET process technology. What’s next? Qualcomm is developing the Snapdragon 830. “Snapdragon 830 leaks indicate that the chip will sport 8GB of RAM, an enhanced Kryo custom architecture, and fabbe... » read more

Reflections On 2015

It is easy to make predictions, but few people can make them with any degree of accuracy. Most of the time, those predictions are forgotten by the end of the year and there is no one to do a tally of who holds more credibility for next year. Not so with SemiEngineering. We like to hold people's feet to the fire, but while the Pants-On-Fire meter may be applicable to politicians, we like to thin... » read more

Rethinking Differentiation

Differentiation is becoming more difficult, more time-consuming, and in some cases much more expensive for chipmakers. The traditional metrics of faster performance, lower power and less area/cost, which are leftovers from the PC era, no longer are a guarantee of success despite the fact that they are still baseline metrics for many designs. Even new metrics such as ecosystem completeness, w... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing

Sunit Rikhi, vice president of the Technology and Manufacturing Group at Intel and general manager of Intel’s Custom Foundry unit, has retired. “I left Intel on a sabbatical in late March and ended my career with Intel on June 1,” Rikhi said in an e-mail. Now, Rikhi has started a new company. The company, called Reach for Infinity LLC, “is a management development company devoted to... » read more

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