The Changing Landscape of Hardware-Based Verification And Software Development


As the EDA is gearing up for its biggest industry event, the Design Automation Conference (DAC), this year in Las Vegas, it is interesting to observe what is going on in hardware-based development of emulation and prototyping. The trends I had outlined after last DAC in 2018—system design, cloud, and machine learning—have only grown stronger and are causing changes in the development landsc... » read more

Challenges In Using HLS For FPGA Design


High-level synthesis (HLS) tools, which transform C/C++ source code to Verilog/VHDL, have been commercially available for over 15 years. HLS tools from FPGA vendors and EDA companies promise improved productivity through a higher-level of abstraction, faster verification and quicker design iterations. For example, simulating your design in C/C++ can be 10 to 100x faster than simulating in RTL (... » read more

Rushing To The Edge


Virtually every major tech company has an "edge" marketing presentation these days, and some even have products they are calling edge devices. But the reality is that today no one is quite sure how to define the edge or what it will become, and any attempts to pigeon-hole it are premature. What is becoming clear is the edge is not simply an extension of the Internet of Things. It is the resu... » read more

Defining Verification


There was a time when the notion of rigorous verification was seen as being unnecessary and even wasteful. I can remember early in my career working on flight control computers. We did no functional verification and created no models. We prototyped it and ran some engineering tests through it, primarily to structurally verify the system. We did not test the functionality of the system – that ... » read more

Moving Beyond Geometries: Context-Aware Verification Improves Design Quality And Reliability


Context-aware checks integrate physical and electrical information to evaluate a wide range of design conditions, from advanced design rule compliance, to circuit and reliability verification, to design optimization and finishing. Automated context-aware checking provides designers with actionable results that improve both debugging efficiency and verification precision. Introduction Many p... » read more

Hardware Trojans And The Problem Of Trust In Integrated Circuits


Electronic systems are at the core of an ever-increasing number of products and services. From power plants to automobiles, from medical devices to airplanes, from smartphones to home appliances, complex electronic systems enable an unprecedented level of automation, performance, safety, and security. Integrated circuits (ICs) are the backbone of these systems. It is of paramount importance tha... » read more

Where Are We On The Road To Artificial Intelligence In Chip Design?


It’s hard to find an article today that doesn’t talk about how Artificial Intelligence is going to solve every possible problem in the world. From self-driving cars, to robots running an entire hotel (in Japan), to voice assistants answering your every question, it appears that every problem can be solved with AI. As so often in life, the true answer is: it depends. It depends on the nature... » read more

Finding And Avoiding Concurrency Bugs


Understanding the intended and unintended interactions between hardware and software components is changing as architectures become more heterogeneous and interconnect topologies get more complicated. This affects performance, power consumption and cost of the project. Lots of universities are researching this from a software perspective, while a small number are looking at the implications fro... » read more

CDNLive 2019: The Verification Ecosystem Is Growing Stronger And Stronger


Ecosystems are not only fascinating when it comes to processors like Arm, MIPS, x86, and RISC-V (as I have written before) or for semiconductor technologies like TSMC, GLOBALFOUNDRIES, and Samsung; they are key for success in verification as well. CDNLive Silicon Valley was, again, a great example of the verification ecosystem in action. It showcased the different engines verification tools run... » read more

All Security Issues Are Safety Issues


Last month I spoke at the IQPC Safety and Security week event in Munich. It became clear to me that our semiconductor community is really paying attention to these issues now, not just to comply with standards, and not just because of the potential liability – but because it simply makes good business sense. The cost of recalling a single vehicle is estimated to be between $400 and $900 ... » read more

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