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ML And UVM Share Same Flaws


A number of people must be scratching their heads over what UVM and machine learning (ML) have in common, such that they can be described as having the same flaws. In both cases, it is a flaw of omission in some sense. Let's start with ML, and in particular, object recognition. A decade ago, Alexnet, coupled with GPUs, managed to beat all of the object detection systems that relied on tradit... » read more

Is AI Improving A Broken Process?


Verification is fundamentally comparing two models, each derived independently, to find out if there are any different behaviors expressed between the two models. One of those models represents the intended design, and the other is part of the testbench. In an ideal flow, the design model would be derived from the specification, and each stage of the design process would be adding other deta... » read more

Ethical Coverage


How many times have you heard statements such as, "The verification task quadruples when the design size doubles?" The implication is that every register bit that is created has doubled the state space of the design. It gives the impression that complete verification is hopeless, and because of that little progress has been made in coming up with real coverage metrics. When constrained rando... » read more

Better Quality RTL


How do you measure the quality of RTL? Philippe Luc, director of verification at Codasip, talks about identifying bugs, improving the overall quality of the verification, what happens when different blocks are used in a design, and how to improve efficiency in the verification process. » read more

Bug Escapes And The Definition Of Done


National Semiconductor's design center (NSTA) in Herzliya was the place where I fell in love with chip verification. I joined the team in 1999, still during my BSc, and met a group of innovators with a passion to create great ASICs and improve the way we did it at all costs. It was fast-moving learning for me, both on the verification engineering and verification management sides of things. ... » read more

I’m Almost Done


The city of Belgrade is renovating the street where I live. They are also building a new building next to mine so that I can see the construction work from my balcony. Last week, they blocked the street for some 20 minutes, and people got out of their cars and waited outside for the road to open. The construction workers were not in a hurry, and it seemed like everyone was ok with that, so I... » read more

Confusion Persists In Verification Terms


I find it amazing that an area of technology that attempts to show, beyond a reasonable doubt, that a design will work before it is constructed can be so bad at getting some basic things right. I am talking about verification terminology. I have been in this industry for over 40 years and it is not improving. In fact, it is getting worse. The number of calls I have with people where they hav... » read more

Formal Signoff


Xiaolin Chen, senior AE at Synopsys, looks at what’s good enough coverage, what makes one assertion better than another, and where the potential holes are in verification. https://youtu.be/nBtKE0gDHBU » read more

Simplifying SystemVerilog Functional Coverage


Let’s say you have a block you need to verify. How do you know that the stimulus you are about to use is exhaustive enough and that you have covered the necessary scenarios/situations to prove it is working correctly? This is where functional coverage comes in. SystemVerilog’s functional coverage constructs allow you to quantify the completeness of your stimulus by recording the values that... » read more

System Coverage Undefined


When is a design ready to be taped out? That has been one of the toughest questions to confront every design team, and it's the one verification engineers lose sleep over. Exhaustive [getkc id="56" kc_name="coverage"] has not been possible since the 1980s. Several metrics and methodologies have been defined to help answer the question and to raise confidence that important aspects of a block... » read more

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