Prototypes Proliferate


Hardware prototyping and [getkc id="30" kc_name="emulation"] have been two sides of the same coin ever since the [gettech id="31071" comment="FPGA"] became a commercial success. Early emulators were all built from FPGAs, and most were used in-circuit, much like prototypes are today. More recently, emulation has become a major piece of the [getkc id="10" kc_name="verification"] flow, to the poin... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Fab tools In a move to expand its product portfolio, Lam Research has acquired Coventor, a provider of simulation and modeling solutions for the semiconductor and MEMS industries. Lam Research held an analyst event at the recent Flash Memory Summit. The topics included 3D NAND and other technologies. In a blog, here’s what executives from Lam said at the event. Analysts from RBC Cap... » read more

The Week In Review: Design


Tools Synopsys debuted a tool to replay RTL simulation data on a gate-level netlist for power analysis the company says is accurate within 5% of signoff. The tool, PowerReplay, is design to be used in combination with PrimeTime PX gate-level power analysis for earlier and faster generation of gate-level switching data. IP ClioSoft launched a design reuse ecosystem for searching and com... » read more

Analog’s Unfair Disadvantage


We live in an analog world, and yet digital has become the technology of choice. Mixed-signal solutions that used to contain significant amounts of analog, with just a small amount of digital signal processing, have migrated into systems where the analog to digital conversion happens at the very first opportunity. There are several reasons for this, and some of them build upon themselves. [g... » read more

The Week In Review: Design


Imagination has put the MIPS embedded processor and Ensigma mobile connectivity groups up for sale, refocusing on graphics after last month's announcement that Apple would no longer use the company's GPU IP. Imagination also began formal dispute resolution procedures with Apple. Tools Synopsys released new versions of its HSPICE, FineSim and CustomSim circuit simulation products, adding n... » read more

The Week In Review: Design


M&A Synapse Design acquired Asilicon, a design services firm based in Ranchi Jharkhand, India. Through the acquisition, Synapse Design adds a second design center in India and gains an additional 80 engineers. "The focus of the Ranchi office will be to provide lower-cost offshore design center services for our customer's designs targeting 7- and 10-nm process technology," said Satish Bag... » read more

The Problem With Clocks


The synchronous digital design paradigm has enabled us to design circuits that are well controlled, but that is only true if the clocks themselves are well controlled. While overdesign techniques ensured that to be the case in early ASIC development, designs today cannot afford such luxuries. As we strive for lower power and higher operating frequencies, the clock has become a critical desig... » read more

The Week In Review: Design


Tools Mentor Graphics launched the company's third generation data-center friendly emulation platform, Veloce Strato. The emulator has a capacity of 2.5BG when fully loaded, and total capacity can be increased by linking emulators. It has available slots for 64 Advanced Verification Boards (AVBs) and fully loaded consumes up to 50KW (22.7 W/Mgate) of power. Aldec uncorked the latest versi... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Samsung Austin Semiconductor plans to invest more than $1 billion in its fab in Austin, Texas. Today, the fab continues to ramp up the company’s 14nm finFET technology. At the same time, Samsung is expanding its advanced finFET foundry process technology offerings with its fourth-generation 14nm process (14LPU) and its third-generation 10nm technology (10LPU). Graphcore is developing a so-... » read more

Will Open-Source Work For Chips?


Open source is getting a second look by the semiconductor industry, driven by the high cost of design at complex nodes along with fragmentation in end markets, which increasingly means that one size or approach no longer fits all. The open source movement, as we know it today, started in the 1980s with the launch of the GNU project, which was about the time the electronic design automation (... » read more

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