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Phil Moorby

Inventor of Verilog and contributor to other important modeling languages


Phil Moorby was from Birmingham, England He studied Mathematics at Southampton University, England and received his Masters in computer science from Manchester University, England in 1974. He started to work on a PhD at Brunel University and got involved in the creation of a logic simulator called Hilo 2. Moorby developed much of the modeling language and the simulation kernel. That simulator was commercialized in 1981.

While working for Gateway Design automation, Moorby improved on the concepts found in Hilo and created a new modeling language targeting the need of chip verification. The language and simulator was initially called AIDSim, but with the onset of the epidemic with the same name, changed its name to Verilog (VERIfy Logic).

In 1999, after a period of time away from EDA, Moorby joined forces with other members of the Hilo team to create Co-Design Automation. This company was purchased by Synopsys in 2002 and the technology became some of the foundational technology for SystemVerilog. A link to a book he co-wrote, The Verilog Hardware Description Language, is here.

Moorby was the recipient of the Phil Kaufman Award in 2005 for his contributions to the EDA industry. In 2016, Moorby was named a Fellow at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, Calif., for his work on Verilog. CHM’s collection has an oral history from Moorby.

Phil Moorby passed away on September 2022.


  • Phil Moorby Founded Verilog in 1984
    • Created while at Gateway Design Automation