Good Solutions Create Problems


I am amazed at the array of products available these days – products that I had no idea existed or needed. And yet, globalization has made it possible for anyone with an idea to get the product made cheaply and can sell it on amazon, even giving it lots of attention by claiming it is worth 10 times the cost to produce and then discounting it 80%. When 3D printing becomes a little more afforda... » read more

UVM Can Kill You. More News At 11


Ok. I agree. Not a great title. I don’t like it either. Some pretty aggressive clickbait, I know. But it’s got the quick hit, newsy cliffhanger feel that makes you want to tune in anyway, doesn’t it? I had to go for it. For what it’s worth, it wasn’t my first choice. I wanted to go with “What You Don’t Know About UVM Can Kill You. More News at 11”. Same punch. Still the hi... » read more

More Volatility Ahead


The entire semiconductor industry had a wild ride on the stock market this week, plunging on Wednesday and recovering on Thursday. This is just a sign of things to come. The cause of this week's volatility can be tied directly to a Morgan Stanley report, which said that NAND prices have peaked and will begin dropping at the beginning of 2018 because supply has caught up with demand. The repo... » read more

Heterogeneous Cache Coherence Requires A Common Internal Protocol


Machine learning and artificial intelligence systems are driving the need for systems-on-chip containing tens or even hundreds of heterogeneous processing cores. As these systems expand in size and complexity, it becomes too difficult to manage data flow solely through software means. An approach that simplifies software while improving performance and power consumption is to implement hardware... » read more

How To Use CFD To Test And Analyze A Chip Package


By Prasad Tota and Robert Day Throughout the electronics industry, submicron feature size at the die level are driving package component sizes down to the design-rule level of the early technologies. Today’s integrated circuit (IC) package technology must deliver higher lead counts, reduced lead pitch, minimum footprint area, and significant volume reduction, which has led to semiconductor... » read more

5 Pitfalls That May Kill The IoT


A couple of weeks ago I participated in a panel titled “The Road to a Trillion Devices” organized by Brian Fuller at Arm TechCon. His closing question was whether we will get to the projected trillion devices in twenty years. My answer was that we may even get there faster. His opening question was what the pitfalls would be to make it difficult to get to trillion devices in the next twenty... » read more

Using FPGAs For Emulation


For many years, emulators were available only to verification teams working on the largest projects in companies with deep enough pockets. Due to size rather than capabilities they were called “Big Box” emulators and typically were used in order to recover some of the time lost on RTL simulation. Meanwhile, FPGA technology has been available long enough to mature to the point where FPGA bas... » read more

The Uncontrolled Rise Of Functional Safety Standards


Over the past 30 years, advances in software and hardware have made it possible to create sophisticated systems controlling crucial aspects of complex equipment, from rolling and pitching in aircrafts, to steering and braking in cars. The processes and methods defined in functional safety standards are crucial to ensure that these systems behave as expected and safely, even when certain parts ... » read more

Going On A Quest


Over the extended Thanksgiving weekend, I went with my family to a hotel with built-in entertainment. The hotel had so many amenities as to make sure that you would never want to leave it: a water park, an arcade, multiple restaurants, miniature golf, and the list goes on. The water park was the main attraction and ensured multiple hours of fun for the entire family each day. A wave pool, in... » read more

Advanced ASICs: It Takes An Ecosystem


I remember the days of the IDM (integrated device manufacturer). For me, it was RCA, where I worked for 15 years as the company changed from RCA to GE and then ultimately to Harris Semiconductor. It’s a bit of a cliché, but life was simpler then, from a customer point of view at least. RCA did it all. We designed all the IP, did the physical design, owned fabs, assembly and test facilities a... » read more

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