What Makes A Chip Design Successful Today?


"Transistors are free" was the rallying cry of the semiconductor industry during the 1990s and early 2000s. That is no longer true. The end of Dennard scaling made the simultaneous use of all the transistors troublesome, but transistors remained effectively unlimited. This led to an era where large amounts of flexibility could be built into a chip. It didn't matter if all of it was being use... » read more

Week In Review: Design, Low Power


RISC-V Western Digital announced big plans for RISC-V with a new open source RISC-V core, an open standard initiative for cache coherent memory over a network, and an open source RISC-V instruction set simulator. The SweRV Core features a 2-way superscalar design with a 32-bit, 9 stage pipeline core. It has clock speeds of up to 1.8Ghz on a 28mm CMOS process technology and will be used in vari... » read more

eFPGAs Offer Practical Solution For Embedded Vision Applications


Video applications, such as surveillance, object detection and motion analysis, rely on 360° embedded vision and high-resolution fish-eye cameras lenses with a wide-angle field of view (FOV). These systems have up to six real-time camera streams processing together frame by frame. Each frame is corrected for distortion and other image artifacts, adjusted for exposure and white balance, then st... » read more

Inferencing In Hardware


Cheng Wang, senior vice president of engineering at Flex Logix, examines shifting neural network models, how many multiply-accumulates are needed for different applications, and why programmable neural inferencing will be required for years to come. https://youtu.be/jb7qYU2nhoo         See other tech talk videos here. » read more

AI Chip Architectures Race To The Edge


As machine-learning apps start showing up in endpoint devices and along the network edge of the IoT, the accelerators that make AI possible may look more like FPGA and SoC modules than current data-center-bound chips from Intel or Nvidia. Artificial intelligence and machine learning need powerful chips for computing answers (inference) from large data sets (training). Most AI chips—both tr... » read more

Week In Review: Design, Low Power


Tools & Standards Mentor uncorked a PCB design platform for non-specialist PCB engineers focused on multi-dimensional verification. The Xpedition platform can integrate a range of verification tools within a singular authoring environment, providing automatic model creation, concurrent simulation, cross probing from results, and error reviews to identify problems at the schematic or layout... » read more

The Race To Design Larger Systems


For more than a decade, tools vendors and design houses have been talking about leveraging their tools and expertise to help design systems of systems. They're finally getting their chance. The basic idea behind this strategy has always been that issues inside any electronic system—performance, power, signal integrity, area—have all been dealt all the way down to the sub-atomic level in ... » read more

What Makes A Good AI Accelerator


The rapid growth and dynamic nature of AI and machine learning algorithms is sparking a rush to develop accelerators that can be optimized for different types of data. Where one general-purpose processor was considered sufficient in the past, there are now dozens vying for a slice of the market. As with any optimized system, architecting an accelerator — which is now the main processing en... » read more

A Crisis In DoD’s Trusted Foundry Program?


The U.S. Department of Defense’s Trusted Foundry program is in flux due to GlobalFoundries’ recent decision to put 7nm on hold, raising national security concerns across the U.S. defense community. U.S. DoD and military/aerospace chip customers currently have access to U.S.-based “secure” foundry capacity down to 14nm, but that's where it ends. No other foundries provide similar “s... » read more

Reconfigurable eFPGA For Aerospace Applications


Market research reports indicate about 10% of all dollar revenue of FPGA chips is for use in aerospace applications, and DARPA/DoD reports indicate about one-third of all dollar volume of ICs purchased by U.S. aerospace are FPGAs. FPGAs clearly are very important for aerospace applications because of a combination of short development time and the long mission life of many aerospace applica... » read more

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