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RISC-V Inches Toward The Center


RISC-V is pushing further into the mainstream, showing up across a wide swath of designs and garnering support from a long and still-growing list of chipmakers, tools vendors, universities and foundries. In most cases it is being used as a complementary processor than a replacement for something else, but that could change in the future. What makes RISC-V particularly attractive to chipmaker... » read more

Machine Learning Shifts More Work to FPGAs, SoCs


A wave of machine-learning-optimized chips is expected to begin shipping in the next few months, but it will take time before data centers decide whether these new accelerators are worth adopting and whether they actually live up to claims of big gains in performance. There are numerous reports that silicon custom-designed for machine learning will deliver 100X the performance of current opt... » 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

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

Using AI In Chip Manufacturing


David Fried, CTO at Coventor, a Lam Research Company, sat down with Semiconductor Engineering to talk about how AI and Big Data techniques will be used to improve yield and quality in chip manufacturing. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: We used to think about manufacturing data in terms of outliers, but as tolerances become tighter at each new node that data may need to b... » read more

Higher Performance, Lower Power Everywhere


The future of technology is all about information—not just data—at our fingertips, anywhere and at any time. But making all of this work properly will require massive improvements in both performance and power efficiency. There are several distinct pieces to this picture. One is architectural, which is possibly the simplest to understand, the most technologically challenging to realize, ... » read more

Warp Speed Ahead


The computing world is on a tear, but not just in one direction. While battery-powered applications are focused on extending the time between charges or battery replacements, there is a whole separate and growing market for massive improvements in speed. Ultimately, this is where quantum computing will play a role, probably sometime in the late 2020/early 2030 timeframe, according to multipl... » read more

Effective Management Of System Designs


With the advent of the Internet-of-Things (IoT), system designs are slowly but surely becoming more complex. They now use heterogeneous architectures both on the System-on-Chip (SoC) and within a package. These systems typically have multiple different CPU cores, hardware accelerators, memories, network-on-chip (NoC) fabrics and numerous peripheral interfaces. Now, add to this the complexiti... » read more

The Case For Combining CPUs With FPGA Fabrics


Given that the industry is beginning to reach the limits of what can physically and economically be achieved through further shrinkage of process geometries, reducing feature size and increasing transistor counts is no longer achieving the same result it once did. Instead the industry is, quite rightly, focusing on fundamentally new system architectures and making better use of available silico... » read more

Executive Insight: Lip-Bu Tan


Semiconductor Engineering sat down with Lip-Bu Tan, president and CEO of [getentity id="22032" e_name="Cadence"], to discuss disruptions and changes in the semiconductor industry, from machine learning and advance packaging to tools and business. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. SE: What do you see as the next big thing? Tan: Unlike mobility or cell phones, or PCs before th... » read more

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