Author's Latest Posts


Using AI And Bugs To Find Other Bugs


Debug is starting to be rethought and retooled as chips become more complex and more tightly integrated into packages or other systems, particularly in safety- and mission-critical applications where life expectancy is significantly longer. Today, the predominant bug-finding approaches use the ubiquitous constrained random/coverage driven verification technology, or formal verification techn... » read more

Difficult Memory Choices In AI Systems


The number of memory choices and architectures is exploding, driven by the rapid evolution in AI and machine learning chips being designed for a wide range of very different end markets and systems. Models for some of these systems can range in size from 10 billion to 100 billion parameters, and they can vary greatly from one chip or application to the next. Neural network training and infer... » read more

Growing Complexity Adds To Auto IC Safety Challenges


The automotive industry is working to streamline, automate and tame verification of automotive electronic control units, SoCs and other chips used in vehicles, many of which are becoming so complex and intertwined that progress is getting bogged down. Modern cars may have up to 100 ECUs, which control such vehicle functions as engine, powertrain, transmission, brakes, suspension, entertainme... » read more

Speeding Up AI With Vector Instructions


A search is underway across the industry to find the best way to speed up machine learning applications, and optimizing hardware for vector instructions is gaining traction as a key element in that effort. Vector instructions are a class of instructions that enable parallel processing of data sets. An entire array of integers or floating point numbers is processed in a single operation, elim... » read more

Using Verification Data More Effectively


Verification is producing so much data from complex designs that engineering teams need to decide what to keep, how long to keep it, and what they can learn from that data for future projects. Files range from hundreds of megabytes to hundreds of gigabytes, depending on the type of verification task, but the real value may not be obvious unless AI/machine learning algorithms are applied to a... » read more

Confusion Grows Over Packaging And Scaling


The push toward both multi-chip packaging and continued scaling of digital logic is creating confusion about how to classify designs, what design tools work best, and how to best improve productivity and meet design objectives. While the goals of design teams remains the same — better performance, lower power, lower cost — the choices often involve tradeoffs between design budgets and ho... » read more

Sensor Fusion Challenges In Cars


The automotive industry is zeroing in on sensor fusion as the best option for dealing with the complexity and reliability needed for increasingly autonomous vehicles, setting the stage for yet another shift in how data from multiple devices is managed and utilized inside a vehicle. The move toward greater autonomy has proved significantly more complicated than anyone expected at first. There... » read more

System-Level Packaging Tradeoffs


Leading-edge applications such as artificial intelligence, machine learning, automotive, and 5G, all require high bandwidth, higher performance, lower power and lower latency. They also need to do this for the same or less money. The solution may be disaggregating the SoC onto multiple die in a package, bringing memory closer to processing elements and delivering faster turnaround time. But ... » read more

New Uses For Assertions


Assertions have been a staple in formal verification for years. Now they are being examined to see what else they can be used for, and the list is growing. Traditionally, design and verification engineers have used assertions in specific ways. First, there are assertions for formal verification, which are used by designers to show when something is wrong. Those assertions help to pinpoint wh... » read more

Dealing With Device Aging At Advanced Nodes


Premature aging of circuits is becoming troublesome at advanced nodes, where it increasingly is complicated by new market demands, more stress from heat, and tighter tolerances due to increased density and thinner dielectrics. In the past, aging and stress largely were separate challenges. Those lines are starting to blur for a number of reasons. Among them: In automotive, advanced-node... » read more

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