Turning Down The Power


Chip and system designers are giving greater weight to power issues these days. But will they inevitably hit a wall in accounting for ultra-low-power considerations? Performance, power, and area are the traditional attributes in chip design. Area was originally the main priority, with feature sizes constantly shrinking according to Moore's Law. Performance was in the saddle for many years. M... » read more

Machine Learning’s Growing Divide


[getkc id="305" kc_name="Machine learning"] is one of the hottest areas of development, but most of the attention so far has focused on the cloud, algorithms and GPUs. For the semiconductor industry, the real opportunity is in optimizing and packaging solutions into usable forms, such as within the automotive industry or for battery-operated consumer or [getkc id="76" kc_name="IoT"] products. ... » read more

The Future Of AI Is In Materials


I had the pleasure of hosting an eye-opening presentation and Q&A with Dr. Jeff Welser of IBM at a recent Applied Materials technical event in San Francisco. Dr. Welser is Vice President and Director of IBM Research's Almaden lab in San Jose. He made the case that the future of hardware is AI. At Applied Materials we believe that advanced materials engineering holds the keys to unlocking... » read more

The Week In Review: Design


Security Security researchers identified a major exploit of the "speculative execution" technique used to optimize performance in modern processors. The flaws allow an attacker to read sensitive information in the system's memory such as passwords, encryption keys, or sensitive information open in applications, according to Google's Jann Horn. Multiple researchers discovered the issues indepen... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Chipmakers Christopher Rolland, an analyst at Susquehanna International, expects to see more merger and acquisition activity in the IC industry heading into 2018. “M&A activity slowed in 2017, but the year is going out with a bang!” Rolland said in a recent research note. Towards the end of 2017, for example, Broadcom made a bid for Qualcomm, while Marvell announced intent to buy Cavium. ... » read more

Preparing For Bigger Changes Ahead


The semiconductor industry has undergone a fundamental shift over the past year, and it's one that will redefine chipmaking over the next decade or more. While the focus is still on building the fastest, lowest-power devices, whether that's by shrinking features or packaging them into blazing-fast 2.5D or fan-out configurations, these devices are being customized for specific use cases much ... » read more

The IoT Is Alive And Well


There has been a lot of grumbling lately about the IoT and how it has failed to live up to expectations. But the problem may be less about the success of the IoT than the ability of any group of chipmakers and manufacturers to capitalize on its success. The IoT has been growing steadily since the term was first coined by Kevin Ashton, who began using RFID inside of Procter & Gamble to ma... » read more

Hyperscaling The Data Center


Enterprise data centers increasingly will look and behave more like slimmed-down versions of hyperscale data centers as chipmakers and other suppliers adapt systems developed for their biggest customers to in-house IT faciilities. The new chips and infrastructure that will serve as building blocks in these facilities will be more power-efficient, make better use of space and generate less he... » read more

State Of The IoT


The Internet of Things represents many things to many people, and many of them are not good. For some it is either a laughingstock or a punching bag. For IT, it is a subject of derision because securing all connected devices at the edge is a nightmare. But in all cases, the general consensus is that the IoT has failed to live up to expectations and a level of hype not seen since the dot-com ... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Chipmakers The 2017 top-ten rankings of foundries remain the same as last year, according to TrendForce. TSMC, GlobalFoundries and United Microelectronics Corp. (UMC) rank first, second, and third, respectively, in terms of projected sales in 2017, according to TrendForce. TSMC has a dominant market share of 55.9%. In the rankings, Samsung is in fourth place, followed in order by SMIC, TowerJa... » read more

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