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

Have Processor Counts Stalled?


Survey data suggests that additional microprocessor cores are not being added into SoCs, but you have to dig into the numbers to find out what is really going on. The reasons are complicated. They include everything from software programming models to market shifts and new use cases. So while the survey numbers appear to be flat, market and technology dynamics could have a big impact in resh... » 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

Productivity Keeping Pace With Complexity


Designs have become larger and more complex and yet design time has shortened, but team sizes remain essentially flat. Does this show that productivity is keeping pace with complexity for everyone? The answer appears to be yes, at least for now, for a multitude of reasons. More design and IP reuse is using more and larger IP blocks and subsystems. In addition, the tools are improving, and mo... » read more

RISC-V: What’s Missing And Who’s Competing


Part 2: Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss the business and technology landscape for RISC-V with Zdenek Prikryl, CTO of Codasip; Helena Handschuh, a Rambus Security Technologies fellow; Louie De Luna, director of marketing at Aldec; Shubhodeep Roy Choudhury, CEO of Valtrix Systems; and Bipul Talukdar, North America director of applications engineering at SmartDV. What follows are exc... » read more

Components For Open-Source Verification


Defining an open-source verification methodology is a lot more difficult than just developing an open-source simulator. This is the reality facing open-source hardware such as RISC-V. Some people may be asking for the corresponding open-source verification, but that is a much tougher problem — and it is not going to be solved in the short term. Part one examined the reasons why open-source... » read more

Challenges In Using AI In Verification


Pressure to use AI/ML techniques in design and verification is growing as the amount of data generated from complex chips continues to explode, but how to begin building those capabilities into tools, flows and methodologies isn't always obvious. For starters, there is debate about whether the data needs to be better understood before those techniques are used, or whether it's best to figure... » read more

The Evolution Of High-Level Synthesis


High-level synthesis is getting yet another chance to shine, this time from new markets and new technology nodes. But it's still unclear how fully this technology will be used. Despite gains, it remains unlikely to replace the incumbent RTL design methodology for most of the chip, as originally expected. Seen as the foundational technology for the next generation of EDA companies around the ... » read more

RISC-V’s Expanding Footprint


Zdenek Prikryl, CTO of Codasip, sat down with Semiconductor Engineering to talk about the RISC-V market, where this open instruction set architecture (ISA) is gaining ground, and what are the biggest challenges in working with this technology. SE: Where do you see the value in RISC-V? Is it for off-the-shelf processors or more customized components? Prikryl: A few years ago, RISC-V was us... » read more

Problems And Solutions In Analog Design


Advanced chip design is becoming a great equalizer for analog and digital at each new node. Analog IP has more digital circuitry, and digital designs are more susceptible to kinds of noise and signal disruption that have plagued analog designs for years. This is making the design, test and packaging of SoCs much more complicated. Analog components cause the most chip production test failures... » read more

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