And the Winner is…

A look back on Semiconductor Engineering’s first year and the top 10 most popular stories.

popularity

Semiconductor Engineering now has its first full year under its belt, and I have to say it has been an incredible year. Not only did we exceed a million page views in our first year, but we also got started on the Knowledge Center, an endeavor the likes of which has never been attempted in our industry. It is still very young and has a lot of growing up to do, but it is a wonderful start. We would really like to know what you think of it and love getting updates, corrections and proposals for new pages.

I am always interested in what readers find the most interesting and so I took a look through the site stats to find the articles with the top readership and those of mine that have been the most enticing to you. As a general observation, you most like reading stories about manufacturing technologies, new nodes and new challenges. They made up more than half of the top stories. It is also worth noting that such a list is slightly biased towards articles published earlier in the year since they have had a greater time to build up search related hits, but we do still see some recent articles in the list. Starting with the top site content in reverse order:

In tenth place was “An Inside Look At The GlobalFoundries-IBM Deal” that was published on November 20th. Another article about the GlobalFoundries deal also made the 4th spot.

In ninth place was “What Happened To 450mm?” from July 17th. This article examined the reason why 450mm went from being a must have technology to one that has been placed on the sidelines for the rest of the decade.

In eighth place was an executive interview “One-On-One: Mark Bohr” from Sept 18th. Bohr talks about process technology roadmaps at Intel Corp. and a look at their opinions for FinFET technology, materials and new transistor types.

In seventh place was “What’s After Silicon?” published back on Jan 9th. This article looked at the problems with silicon and the likelihood of germanium or a III-V compound taking over after we reach 10nm.

While spot news is not the primary focus for us at SemiEngineering, an analysis about the “Explosion At Mitsubishi Materials“, published on Feb 5th reached sixth place. This article discussed what happened and the fallout for the semiconductor industry.

In fifth place was the follow-on for the seventh place winner and was titled “What’s After CMOS?” This Jan 24th article stated that there are nearly 20 viable next-generation transistor candidates on the table, although there is a possibility that CMOS may prevail over the long term.

Fourth place went to the other article about “IBM Unloads Chip Biz To GF” published October 20th

In third place “EUV Suffers New Setback” detailed an unfortunate disclosure from the Advanced Lithography conference that “EUV had suffered a setback during a trial at TSMC.

Switching for a moment to look at the top articles that I published during the year, and to add to the tension, fourth place went to “Pointing Fingers In Verificationpublished Mar 12th. This article looks at why the Verification gap exists, and what needs to happen to solve the problem. This was also the starting point for industry discussions about new verification methodologies such as Software-Driven Verification.

Third place went to “Limiters To The Internet of Things” published Sept 11th. While most of the industry likes to think of the IoT as being about consumer devices, The Industrial IoT is much larger and perhaps more important. It may also have different demands that semiconductor and EDA companies are not fully responding to.

Second place was filled by a news and analysis story that talked about “Cadence Gobbles Up Jasperback on April 21st. Cadence recently said that they have completed the integration of the teams and now have a single product roadmap for formal verification.

My top article, which also happens to be the number two “top story” for the site, was “Moore’s Law Tail No Longer Wagging The Dogpublished on June 26th. This article asked questions about the impact of the industry sticking with 28nm rather than continuing to follow just a few companies down on the road to smaller devices.

And for the number one spot for the entire site, with a substantial lead, is “Will 7nm And 5nm Really Happen?” published on June 19th. Like my top article, this article also talks about the changing economics and the increasing size of the technological hurdles that have to be faced for each node shrink.

So with that I thank you all for reading the many articles on SemiEngineering and for the wonderful comments that have been placed either here on site, or on LinkedIn. I hope that in 2015 we will have many more interesting articles for you and wish you all a successful and prosperous New Year.