Is There Finally A Silver Bullet For Software?


As I am in Nuremberg for the annual embedded world conference, the overall mood here seemed a bit muted and slow on day one. There are rumors of 200 exhibitors of the roughly 1100 having pulled out due to the global health situation—we are all asked not to shake hands and smile instead—and the rainy weather doesn't help much either. With the weather turning to snow on day two, the attendanc... » read more

Timing Library LVF Validation For Production Design Flows


Variation modeling has evolved over the past several years from a single derating factor that represents on-chip variation (OCV), to Liberty Variation Format (LVF), today’s leading standard format that encapsulates variation information in timing libraries (.libs). LVF data is considered a requirement for advanced process nodes 22nm and below. At the smallest process nodes such as 7nm and ... » read more

Keep The Wooden Horse Out Of Your Chip


The OneSpin's Holiday Puzzle tradition has reached its fourth year: hear, hear! In December 2016, OneSpin challenged engineers to solve the Einstein riddle using assertions and a formal verification tool. In December 2017, the challenge was to model the hardest Sudoku in the world using assertions and find a solution with a formal tool. The OneSpin 2018-19 Holiday Puzzle asked engineers to desi... » read more

Simulation: Go Parallel Or Go Home


Although complemented by other valuable technologies, functional simulation remains at the heart of semiconductor verification. Every chip project still develops a testbench, usually compliant with the Universal Verification Methodology (UVM), and a large test suite. Constrained-random stimulus generation has largely replaced hand-crafted tests, but at the expense of much more simulation time. ... » read more

Bluetooth LE Audio Makes Its Debut


The Bluetooth Low Energy 5.2 specification introduces LE audio, which is a significant step forward for Bluetooth audio, both in terms of sounds quality and functionality. LE Audio, based on our new iEB110 IP, will enable manufacturers to create low power audio devices that offer several revolutionary new features that weren’t possible before, even with third-party proprietary solutions. T... » read more

SoC Co-Emulation Using Zynq Boards


Have you ever worked on a group project where you had to combine your work with that of a colleague of a different engineering discipline but the absence of an efficient means of doing so affected the project’s overall outcome? Well, for software and hardware engineers developing an SoC, the merging of their respective engineering efforts for verification purposes is a big challenge. Early... » read more

Chips, Business And The Coronavirus


In the spring of 2003, the SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) hit China and Hong Kong, creating such panic that no one would touch crates on shipping docks. Ultimately, it erased an estimated $40 billion from the global economy and effectively shut down the Chinese semiconductor industry for several months. It could have been much worse, though, and this is what is particularly troubli... » read more

The Trouble With Semantics


Semantics are important. They tell us what something means. Without semantics you just have a jumble of syntax. The better defined the semantics are, the less likely something is to be mis-interpreted because they can be more rigidly analyzed. The semantics of the English language are not very well defined, which is why it is impossible to write a specification where everyone agrees upon wha... » read more

Balancing Flexibility And Quality In SRAM Verification


Memory is an essential component of system-on-chip (SOC) designs, especially at advanced nodes. SoCs use a variety of memory block types, such as static random-access memory (SRAM) and dynamic RAM (DRAM), to perform computations. The SRAM blocks, which consist of an assembly of specialized calls that abut or overlap one another in a specific arrangement that complies with the circuit specificat... » read more

New Parasitic Extraction Requirements In Custom Design For The Next Wave Of SoCs


Fast growing markets like 5G, biotechnology, AI, and automotive are driving the new wave in semiconductor design and the need for highly integrated system on chip (SoCs). Power management, sensors, RF and precision analog functionality are all integrated on the same substrate which poses new challenges for custom design tools. Specifically, there are new challenges for parasitic extraction that... » read more

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