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The Building Blocks Of Future Compute


Eric Hennenhoefer, vice president of research at Arm, sat down with Semiconductor Engineering to talk about privacy, security, high-performance computing, accelerators, and Arm’s research. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: Privacy, cybersecurity, silicon photonics, quantum computing are all hot topics today. What do you find really interesting with these emerging areas? ... » read more

Mixing Interface Protocols


Continuous and pervasive connectivity requires devices to support multiple interface protocols, but that is creating problems at multiple levels because each protocol is based on a different set of assumptions. This is becoming significantly harder as systems become more heterogeneous and as more functions are crammed into those devices. There are more protocols that need to be supported to ... » read more

Introduction To AXI Protocol


By Brandon Wade When part of a team, your group can become more capable than a single individual, but only if your team can work together and communicate effectively. Having members of a group talk over each other leads to nothing but a cacophony, and nothing gets done. For this reason protocols need to be established, such as letting others speak without interruption, or facing those you ar... » read more

How Cache Coherency Impacts Power, Performance


As discussed in part one, one of the reasons cache coherency is becoming more important is the shared common memory resource in designs today. Various agents in the design want to access the data the fastest they can, putting pressure on the CPU complex to manage all of the requests. Until a generation ago, it was okay for the CPU to control that memory and have access to it, as well as be t... » read more

Rightsizing Challenges Grow


Rightsizing chip architectures is getting much more complicated. There are more options to choose from, more potential bottlenecks, and many more choices about what process to use at what process node and for which markets and price points. Rightsizing is a way of targeting chips to specific application needs, supplying sufficient performance while minimizing power and cost. It has been a to... » read more

Bridging The IP Divide


The adoption of an IP-based model has enabled designs to keep filling the available chip area while allowing design time to shrink. But there is a divide between IP providers and IP users. It is an implicit fuzzy contract about how the IP should be used, what capabilities it provides, and the extent of the verification that has been performed. IP vendors have been trying to formalize this as mu... » read more

Say Hi To Hybrid


It has been proposed for some time that virtual platforms could be linked to emulation hardware in order to co-verify the software and hardware components of an SoC. However, that proposal now has evolved into hybrid emulation, a practical solution to allow pre-silicon verification and validation of today’s complex SoC designs. First-rate work by the standards body Accellera and the Open ... » read more

Can IP Integration Be Automated?


What exactly does it mean to automate [getkc id="43" comment="IP"] integration? Ask four people in the industry and you’ll get four different answers. “The key issue is how you can assemble the hardware as quickly as you can out of pre-made pieces of IP,” said Charlie Janac, chairman and CEO of [getentity id="22674" e_name="Arteris"]. To Simon Rance, senior product manager in the ... » read more

Tale Of Two HLS Viewpoints


The Design Automation Conference attracts several co-located conferences, symposiums and other such gathering of people, often on more specialized topics than would appeal to the general DAC attendees. Some of them are more research-focused, but one conference is somewhat strange in that it is about a subject that has transitioned to commercial tool development and yet still remains an active a... » read more

What Is Coherency?


Coherency is about ensuring all processors, or bus masters in the system see the same view of memory. Cache coherency means that all components have the same view of shared data. Just as you need both of your eyes to have the same view in order to see properly, it’s critical for every IP block that has access to a shared data source to view consistent data. For example, if I have a process... » read more

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