Plugging Holes In Machine Learning


The number of companies using machine learning is accelerating, but so far there are no tools to validate, verify and debug these systems. That presents a problem for the chipmakers and systems companies that increasingly rely on machine learning to optimize their technology because, at least for now, it creates the potential for errors that are extremely difficult to trace and fix. At the s... » read more

What’s Missing From Machine Learning


Machine learning is everywhere. It's being used to optimize complex chips, balance power and performance inside of data centers, program robots, and to keep expensive electronics updated and operating. What's less obvious, though, is there are no commercially available tools to validate, verify and debug these systems once machines evolve beyond the final specification. The expectation is th... » read more

Focus Shifting To Photonics


Silicon photonics finally appears ready for prime time, after years of unfulfilled expectations and a vision that stretches back at least a couple decades. The biggest challenge has been the ability to build a light source directly into the silicon process, rather than trying to add one onto a chip after manufacturing. [getentity id="22846" e_name="Intel"] today said it has achieved that mi... » 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

Battle Looms Over Mobile Payments


The lines are drawn. The sides are sizing each other up. Apple is on one side with secure element, and Google and Microsoft are on the other side with host card emulation. Both are mobile payment systems for smartphones that rely on near-field communication technology. Apple fired the first shot with SE, and Google soon replied with HCE. And now both sides are ramping up after months of dela... » read more

Why Packaging Matters


The semiconductor package is changing. What was until very recently considered an afterthought is now becoming a key part of the design process at all major chipmakers, and a critical factor in the extension of Moore's Law. This is a sharp reversal of what was almost universally an afterthought in planar silicon design and manufacturing. Rarely was the package an integral part of the archite... » read more

New Metrics For The Cloud


Data centers are beginning to adjust their definition of what makes one server better than another. Rather than comparing benchmarked performance of general-purpose servers, they are adding a new level of granularity based upon what kind of chips work best for certain operations or applications. Those decisions increasingly include everything from the level of redundancy in compute operations, ... » read more

Fallback Plans


By Ann Steffora Mutschler With EUV lithography missing a few deadlines already, the semiconductor industry has begun to search for alternatives. None of these solutions is simple, of course, and it’s questionable whether they’re even economically viable. And even if EUV is ready for mass production by 14nm, there are new challenges that have to be dealt with—particularly in the space... » read more