MPU Vs. MCU


There was a time when microprocessors and microcontrollers were distinct devices. There was never a question as to which one you were dealing with. But changes in the memory architecture have muddied the distinction in modern devices. There are a number of ways in which microprocessors and microcontrollers could possibly be differentiated. But there is no universal agreement as to how that s... » read more

Blog Review: Nov. 25


Mentor's Harry Foster finds growing complexity in FPGA design by looking at the number of embedded microprocessors, asynchronous clock domains, and safety/security features in the 2020 Wilson Research Group Functional Verification Study. Cadence's Paul McLellan points to the interim SRC/SIA Decadal Plan for Semiconductors and five big shifts it identifies in information and communication tec... » read more

Week In Review: Design, Low Power


Synopsys acquired Light Tec, a provider of optical scattering measurements and measurement equipment. The company also provides optical engineering consulting services plus training for use of Synopsys' lighting simulation software. "Light Tec's proven optical measurement capabilities provide our customers with robust new tools for high-accuracy optical product simulations and visualizations," ... » read more

Week In Review: Auto, Security, Pervasive Computing


Pervasive computing — Data centers, cloud, 5G, edge In a move to improve data collection for IC manufacturing, PDF Solutions entered a definitive agreement to acquire Cimetrix Incorporated. Cimetrix makes connectivity products for smart manufacturing, which PDF Solutions will use in its Exensio product to facilitate moving IC manufacturing data from the factory floor to cloud-based analytics... » read more

Blog Review: Nov. 18


Arm's Roberto Lopez Mendez finds that holographic displays can now be achieved on mobile processors thanks to recent algorithmic and computational advances. Mentor's Colin Walls examines the reasons the consolidate a number of automotive sub-systems onto a smaller number of powerful ECU to reduce complexity and increase system reliability. Cadence's Paul McLellan takes a look at the devel... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Nov. 17


Intel’s gate-all-around FETs At the upcoming IEEE International Electron Devices Meeting (IEDM), Intel is expected to present papers on its efforts to develop gate-all-around transistors. One paper from Intel describes a more conventional gate-all-around transistor technology called a nanosheet FET. Another paper involves a next-generation NMOS-on-PMOS nanoribbon transistor technology. (F... » read more

Disaggregation And Smarter Chips Shift Liability For Security


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss security on chips with Vic Kulkarni, vice president and chief strategist at Ansys; Jason Oberg, CTO and co-founder of Tortuga Logic; Pamela Norton, CEO and founder of Borsetta; Ron Perez, fellow and technical lead for security architecture at Intel; and Tim Whitfield, vice president of strategy at Arm. What follows are excerpts of that conversation,... » read more

The Next Big Leap: Energy Optimization


The relationship between power and energy is technically simple, but its implication on the EDA flow is enormous. There are no tools or flows today that allow you to analyze, implement, and optimize a design for energy consumption, and getting to that point will require a paradigm shift within the semiconductor industry. The industry talks a lot about power, and power may have become a more ... » read more

Building Billions Of Batteryless Devices


Later this month, Arm will celebrate its 30 year anniversary and the engineering milestones that have resulted in more than 180 billion Arm-based chips being shipped in everything from sensors to smartphones to the world’s fastest supercomputer. In each of these cases, much of Arm’s success has been in our dedication to delivering the highest performance per watt. But while Arm may ha... » read more

Designs Beyond The Reticle Limit


Designs continue to grow in size and complexity, but today they are reaching both physical and economic challenges. These challenges are causing a reversal of the integration trend that has provided much of the performance and power gains over the past couple of decades. The industry, far from giving up, is exploring new ways to enable designs to go beyond the reticle size, which is around 8... » read more

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