Chip Industry In Rapid Transition


Wally Rhines, CEO Emeritus at Mentor, a Siemens Business, sat down with Semiconductor Engineering to talk about global economics, AI, the growing emphasis on customization, and the impact of security and higher abstraction levels. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: Where do you see the biggest changes happening across the chip industry? Rhines: 2018 was a hot year for fab... » read more

The Impact of Moore’s Law Ending


Over the past couple of process nodes the chip industry has come to grips with the fact that Moore's Law is slowing down or ending for many market segments. What isn't clear is what comes next, because even if chipmakers stay at older nodes they will face a series of new challenges that will drive up costs and increase design complexity. Chip design has faced a number of hurdles just to get ... » read more

Enabling Cheaper Design


While the EDA industry tends to focus on cutting edge designs, where design costs are a minor portion of the total cost of product, the electronics industry has a very long tail. The further along the tail you go, the more significant design costs become as a percent of total cost. Many of those designs are traditionally built using standard parts, such as microcontrollers, but as additional... » read more

Abstraction Aging


During the course of doing interviews for my article on system simulation and abstraction, I spoke to several people who, just like myself, had started their career pushing abstraction. At the time, we were all frustrated that the industry didn't move fast enough. The advantages of abstraction appeared to be so clear. Everyone developed slides showing that the cost to fix bugs increased the fur... » read more

Abstracting Abstracter Abstractions In Functional Verification


I heard a clear three-part message during DVCon at the end of February: verification engineers must abstractly embrace the abstract idea of abstracting abstract abstraction through higher levels of abstraction; we overuse the word abstract to emphasize the value of whatever verification technique we happen to be talking about; and the key to new abstractions is using Portable Stimulu... » read more

Whatever Happened to High-Level Synthesis?


A few years ago, [getkc id="105" comment="high-level synthesis"] (HLS) was probably the most talked about emerging technology that was to be the heart of a new [getkc id="48" kc_name="Electronic System Level"] (ESL) flow. Today, we hear much less about the progress being made in this area. Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss this with Bryan Bowyer, director of engineering for high lev... » read more

Optimization Challenges For 10nm And 7nm


Optimization used to be a simple timing against area tradeoff but not anymore. As we go to each new node, the tradeoffs become more complicated involving additional aspects of the design that used to be dealt with in isolation. Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss these issues with Krishna Balachandran, director of product management for low-power products at [getentity id="22032" e... » read more

Abundant Change Ahead


There is nobody who would question the amazing ride that semiconductors have been on for the past 50 years. It has been described as the longest running exponential that humankind has ever been a part of—and it is not over yet. Still, the future is very likely to be substantially different from the past. It is almost natural for us to see a trend and assume it will continue. There have bee... » read more

System-Level Verification Tackles New Role


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss advances in system-level verification with Larry Melling, product management director for the system verification group of [getentity id="22032" e_name="Cadence"]; Larry Lapides, VP of sales for [getentity id="22036" e_name="Imperas”] and Jean-Marie Brunet, director of marketing for the emulation division of [getentity id="22017" e_name="Mentor Gr... » read more

Why Power Modeling Is So Difficult


Power modeling has been talked about for years and promoted by EDA vendors and chipmakers as an increasingly important tool for advanced designs. But unlike hardware and software modeling, which have been proven to speed time to market for multiple generations of silicon, power modeling has some unique problems that are more difficult to solve. Despite continued development in this field, po... » read more

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