Blog Review: Feb. 4

Safer sports; AXI/ACE interconnects; personal assistant robots; trans-Atlantic audacity; SCADA & fingerprint security; smart sheets.

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After the Super Bowl, Ansys’ Thierry Marchal looks at making football safer through virtual prototyping. Sports concussions are a serious danger for athletes from youths to professionals, and modeling head and brain impacts may lead not only to safer football helmets but a better understanding of how to lower the chance of brain injuries in sports.

Synopsys’ Ray Varghese continues his series on verification of AXI/ACE compliant interconnects, focusing now on testing strategy and testing relative to accesses to overlapping addresses. Is your coffee ready yet?

ARM’s Brad Nemire interviews the creator of a personal assistant robot straight out of The Jetsons and Her. If the challenging issue of AI works as planned this robot will not only take notes and recognize faces for you – it will even tell bedtime stories to your kids.

Cadence’s Brian Fuller brings us a bit of DesignCon 2015. In the opening keynote, Thomas Lee tells of the first trans-Atlantic cable and the people with the “money, ignorance, luck, and craziness” that was necessary to make it happen.

A German steel mill was recently the second known plant to suffer a cyberattack which crippled critical physical systems. Rambus’ Aharon Etengoff warns that without more secure industrial control systems, catastrophic failures like this could affect essential aspects of the grid we all rely upon.

Mentor’s Michael Ford looks at the rise of thumbprint identification and security issues related to it: changing a password is easy, but what if someone gains access to your fingerprint data? You’d better try to keep your hands attached to your arms.

Ansys’ Justin Nescott finds the top five – no wait, six – tech articles of the week. Tesla’s super acceleration surprises unsuspecting passengers and NASA plans on using drones to scout out Mars. After all that excitement are you ready to take a nap in your IoT bed?

And in case you missed last week’s System-Level Design newsletter, here are some noteworthy blogs:

Open Silicon’s Divya Macharla provides a list of best practices for meeting overall design objectives and more effectively dealing with increased design complexity.

Cadence’s Frank Schirrmeister looks at which predictions from past years are worth a second look and what they bode for the future.

Mentor’s Jon McDonald observes that well-written and efficient models equal high performance simulation platforms, but the challenge is understanding what it takes to create one.

eSilicon’s Mike Gianfagna looks at why people are paying attention at webinars and why.

Synopsys’ Tom De Schutter considers what it would be like to use a drone to scout the road ahead while you’re out hiking so you can figure out exactly where you are.

Editor in Chief Ed Sperling finds that after years of talk about expanding the definition of the system, it’s finally happening.

Technology Editor Brian Bailey digs into the summary judgment in a court case between Mentor and Synopsys over emulation.