The Security Penalty


It's not clear if Meltdown, Spectre and Foreshadow caused actual security breaches, but they did prompt big processor vendors like Intel, Arm, AMD and IBM to fix these vulnerabilities before they were made public by Google's Project Zero. While all of this may make data center managers and consumers feel better in one respect, it has created a level of panic of a different sort. For decades,... » read more

Cracking The Auto IC Market


The market for automotive electronics is booming, and it has set off a global scramble among established chipmakers and startups. What's becoming clear, though, is that not everyone understands just how different automotive is from the mobile market. Mobile is still the highest-volume market for semiconductors, but the growth has flattened. In contrast, the value of the automotive electronic... » read more

Processing In Memory


Adding processing directly into memory is getting a serious look, particularly for applications where the volume of data is so large that moving it back and forth between various memories and processors requires too much energy and time. The idea of inserting processors into memory has cropped up intermittently over the past decade as a possible future direction, but it was dismissed as an e... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Chipmakers GlobalFoundries said that it is putting its 7nm finFET program on hold indefinitely and has dropped plans to pursue technology nodes beyond 7nm. To be sure, it was a tough decision by GF to put 7nm on hold. But generally, analysts believe that GF made the right decision. “There’s only a handful of semiconductor companies that will require high-volume 7nm technology right when... » read more

GF Puts 7nm On Hold


GlobalFoundries is putting its 7nm finFET program on hold indefinitely and has dropped plans to pursue technology nodes beyond 7nm. The moves, which mark a major shift in direction for the foundry, involve a headcount reduction of about 5% of its worldwide workforce. At the same time, the company is also moving its ASIC business into a new subsidiary. As a result of GlobalFoundries’ ann... » read more

Gaps In Verification Metrics


As design complexity has exploded, the verification effort has likewise grown exponentially, with many different types of verification being applied to different classes of design. A recent panel discussion with leading chipmakers examined this topic in an effort to shed light on design health and quality, measuring the success of verification, knowing when verification is complete, being on... » read more

Big Changes For Mainstream Chip Architectures


Chipmakers are working on new architectures that significantly increase the amount of data that can be processed per watt and per clock cycle, setting the stage for one of the biggest shifts in chip architectures in decades. All of the major chipmakers and systems vendors are changing direction, setting off an architectural race that includes everything from how data is read and written in m... » read more

Bugs That Kill


Are simulation-resistant superbugs stifling innovation? That is a question Craig Shirley, president and CEO of Oski Technology, asked a collection of semiconductor executives over dinner. Semiconductor Engineering was invited to hear that discussion and to present the key points of the discussion. To promote free conversation, the participants, who are listed below, asked not to be quoted di... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Chipmakers and OEMs Fujitsu Semiconductor and United Microelectronics Corp. (UMC) announced that UMC will acquire all of the shares of Mie Fujitsu Semiconductor Limited (MIFS), a 300mm wafer foundry joint venture between both companies. In addition to the 15.9% of MIFS shares currently owned by UMC, Fujitsu Semiconductor will transfer the remaining 84.1% of its shares in MIFS to UMC, making MI... » read more

Formal Abstraction And Coverage


For the past three years, Oski Technology has facilitated a gathering of formal verification experts over dinner to discuss the problems and issues that they face. They discuss techniques they have been attempting with formal verification technologies, along with the results they have been achieving. Semiconductor Engineering was there to record that conversation and to condense it into the ... » read more

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