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

Week in Review: IoT, Security, Auto


Internet of Things Arm uncorked its first forward-looking CPU roadmap and performance numbers for client computing. The company said it expects to deliver annual performance improvements of more than 15% per year through 2020. The targeted market includes 5G, always-on, always-connected devices. C3 IoT will work with Google Cloud to support artificial intelligence and Internet of Things dep... » read more

Week In Review: Manufacturing, Test


Trade wars The Trump administration unveiled a plan to impose additional tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods on July 10. The announced product list included more than ten categories of LED package and lighting products, according to LEDinside, a division of TrendForce. The export value of the major lighting products in the list reached $5 billion in 2017. “So far, the impact of the U... » read more

Week in Review: IoT, Security, Auto


Cybersecurity Jens (Atom) Steube, a cybersecurity researcher and creator of the Hashcat password cracking tool, was probing for vulnerabilities in the new WPA3 security standard for Wi-Fi routers. WPA3 presents a robust defense against hacking, yet Steube discovered a security flaw in routers using WPA/WPA2 – one that leaves Wi-Fi passwords enabled with Pairwise Master Key Identifiers vulner... » read more

More Performance At The Edge


Shrinking features has been a relatively inexpensive way to improve performance and, at least for the past few decades, to lower power. While device scaling will continue all the way to 3nm and maybe even further, it will happen at a slower pace. Alongside of that scaling, though, there are different approaches on tap to ratchet up performance even with chips developed at older nodes. This i... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Aug. 7


DNA ROMs The National Science Foundation (NSF) and the Semiconductor Research Corp. (SRC) are investing $12 million to develop a new class of memories and other technologies, such as DNA-based read-only memory (ROM), nucleic acid memory (NAM) and neural networks based on yeast cells. The effort is called the Semiconductor Synthetic Biology for Information Processing and Storage Technologies... » read more

What’s in a Name?


Test Vision 2020 is a specialty workshop held each year during Semicon West. Formerly known as ATE Vision 2020, the program focuses on automatic test equipment and related topics. This year’s edition heard a lot about artificial intelligence, automotive electronics, and machine learning, which have been the leading topics at every tech conference I’ve attended in 2018. The workshop’s t... » read more

Week in Review: IoT, Security, Auto


Deals Arm acquired Treasure Data, which offers a data management service. Financial terms weren’t revealed, although the transaction is reportedly worth $600 million. Joyce Kim, Arm’s chief marketing officer, told reporters that the purchase is “the largest cash deal we’ve done.” Along with the company’s introduction of Mbed Cloud (a device management service) last year and the acq... » read more

Week in Review: IoT, Security, Auto


Cybersecurity Rambus signed a patent license agreement with Socionext, a designer of system-on-a-chip devices. Socionext will use Rambus technology in memory controllers, serializers/deserializers, and security applications. Netskope acquired Sift Security, adding 10 technical employees to its headcount of more than 500 people; financial terms weren’t revealed. Sift CEO Neil King was tapp... » read more

The Darker Side Of Consolidation


Another wave of consolidation is underway in the semiconductor industry, setting the stage for some high-stakes competitive battles over market turf and sowing confusion across the supply chain about continued support throughout a product's projected lifetime. The consolidation comes as chipmakers already are grappling with rising complexity, the loss of a roadmap for future designs as Moore... » read more

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