Author's Latest Posts


Will Cowboys Or Collaborators Shape The Self-Driving Future?


You may have noticed the bloom is ever so slightly off the autonomous vehicle rose. This is likely due to some combination of a generalized malaise and growing cynicism directed at Silicon Valley in general (where of course much work on AVs continues apace) and a growing list of highly publicized self-driving incidents that surely make PR teams groan. Exhibit A from this week was the California... » read more

Autonomous Vehicles: IC Design Flow Walk Through


Automotive applications, particularly those related to AI and computer vision, are a significant driver of the current semiconductor boom. Established companies are mostly thriving, it’s true, but perhaps more interesting are all the new faces in the game. As usual, Mentor CEO Wally Rhines is one of the great sense-makers of the all this activity. Wally has been making the rounds at variou... » read more

Smart Cities’ Head Start On The Mobility Future


Even if autonomy is still mostly in the R&D, balky-science-project phase, vehicle connectivity is increasingly here today. And that’s good news since connected cars deliver a meaningful subset of the societal upside promised by their eventual fully autonomous future selves, especially when it comes to safety, traffic management and navigation. But beyond the dashboard, as the world become... » read more

Self-Driving Hits The Safety Reset Button


All of a sudden the autonomous future is looking a bit more uncertain, which is somewhat surprising given what tech and auto boosters have been saying for years now — namely, that self-driving cars are “just around the corner.” (Google that phrase to see just how often they’ve been saying it. Even the starchy Economist trumpets this very meme.) The American Center for Mobility (ACM... » read more

The Coming Golden Age For Automotive E/E Design Services And Consulting


By Andrew Macleod and Scott Majdecki The discipline of automotive E/E systems design is being transformed by trends like electrification and autonomous vehicles, which means there is a premium on methodologies like rapid platform (hardware/ software) prototyping, simulation and test, and electrical architecture optimization. Such methodologies hinge on advanced software design tools and the ... » read more

How To Sleep Easier If You Test Auto ICs For A Living


Last month, I looked at the product definition process of automotive ICs, using the $7 billion microcontroller market as an illustration of design exploration to optimize performance, features, die size and product cost. Now I’d like to look at the back end of the process — the final IC testing that’s still critical no matter how sound the upfront work in defining a featuring set and aptl... » read more

Recipe For Automotive IC Design Success


“Not a computer science project!” That’s how an automotive IC design manager I worked with once described IC design in a product definition meeting. I liked his viewpoint. What he meant was: This is a business, not an academic exercise or homework assignment. There are competitors, customers, and opportunity for success and failure. Despite the massive opportunity for the chip industry, d... » read more

Automotive Features Prominently At DAC 2017


Excellent automotive content features prominently at DAC 2017, which starts June 18th in my hometown of Austin. This of course is fitting given that Austin hosted the world’s first truly self-driving car ride just a few months ago. Our mayor, Steve Adler, called Austin the “the Kitty Hawk of driverless cars,” proving he has a future in tech marketing once he’s done with public service. ... » read more

Five Automotive Megatrends


We see the term 'new mobility' becoming a catch-all for everything happening in connected, autonomous, electric vehicle development. It’s too broad a term to describe the future, we need to drill down a level. We have to look beyond automotive today, see where industry technology convergence is taking us, and identify the megatrends. Here at Mentor Automotive, we have identified five: Connect... » read more

Engineering Challenges Of ADAS


Advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) have made tremendous strides in the past decade. The technology is part of the larger thrust to improve safety of cars, which cause over a million deaths per year around the world. Fortunately, fatal crashes have been on a steady decline for decades even as automobile usage has gone up. This is due in large part to safety-related technologies, including... » read more

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