Components For Open-Source Verification


Defining an open-source verification methodology is a lot more difficult than just developing an open-source simulator. This is the reality facing open-source hardware such as RISC-V. Some people may be asking for the corresponding open-source verification, but that is a much tougher problem — and it is not going to be solved in the short term. Part one examined the reasons why open-source... » read more

Open-Source Hardware Momentum Builds


Open-source hardware continues to gain ground, spearheaded by RISC-V — despite the fact that this processor technology is neither free nor simple to use. Nevertheless, the open-source hardware movement has established a solid foothold after multiple prior forays that yielded only limited success, even for processors. With demand for more customized hardware, and a growing field of startups... » read more

What’s So Important About Processor Extensibility?


While the ability to extend a processor is nothing new, market dynamics are forcing a growing percentage of the industry to consider it a necessary part of their product innovation. From small IoT functions to massive data centers and artificial intelligence, the need to create an optimized processing platform is often the only way to get more performance or lower power out of the silicon area ... » read more

Divided On System Partitioning


Building an optimal implementation of a system using a functional description has been an industry goal for a long time, but it has proven to be much more difficult than it sounds. The general idea is to take software designed to run on a processor and to improve performance using various types of alternative hardware. That performance can be specified in various ways and for specific applic... » read more

Will Open-Source Processors Cause A Verification Shift?


While the promised flexibility of open source could have advantages and possibilities for processors and SoCs, where does the industry stand on verification approaches and methodologies from here? Single-source ISAs of the past relied on general industry verification technologies and methodologies, but open-source ISA-based processor users and adopters will need to review the verification flows... » read more

Open ISAs Gaining Traction


Open instruction set architectures are starting to gain a foothold, often in combination with other processors, as chipmakers begin to add more specialized compute elements and more flexibility into their designs. There are a number of these open ISAs available today, including Power, MIPS, and RISC-V, and there are a number of permutations and tools available for sale based on those archite... » read more

IP Requires System Context At 6/5/3nm


Driven by each successive generation of semiconductor manufacturing technology, complexity has reached dizzying levels. Every part of the design, verification and manufacturing is more complicated and intense the more transistors are able to be packed onto a die. For these reasons, the entire system must be taken into consideration as a whole – not just as individual building blocks as could ... » read more

Optimization Challenges For Safety And Security


Complexity challenges long-held assumptions. In the past, the semiconductor industry thought it understood performance/area tradeoffs, but over time it became clear this is not so simple. Measuring performance is no longer an absolute. Power has many dimensions including peak, average, total energy and heat, and power and function are tied together. Design teams are now dealing with the impl... » read more

The Challenge Of RISC-V Compliance


The open-source RISC-V instruction set architecture (ISA) continues to gain momentum, but the flexibility of RISC-V creates a problem—how do you know if a RISC-V implementation fits basic standards and can play well with other implementations so they all can run the same ecosystem? In addition, how do you ensure that ecosystem development works for all implementations and that all cores that ... » read more

IoT Device Security Makes Slow Progress


Semiconductor Engineering sat down with Chris Jones, vice president of marketing at Codasip; Martin Croome, vice president of business development at GreenWaves Technologies; Kevin McDermott, vice president of marketing at Imperas; Scot Morrison, general manager, embedded platform technology at Mentor, a Siemens Business; Lauri Koskinen, CTO at Minima; and Mike Borza, principal security technol... » read more

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