Will Open-Source Work For Chips?

Open source is getting a second look by the semiconductor industry, driven by the high cost of design at complex nodes along with fragmentation in end markets, which increasingly means that one size or approach no longer fits all. The open source movement, as we know it today, started in the 1980s with the launch of the GNU project, which was about the time the electronic design automation (... » read more

Think In Blocks

It always seems to come back to LEGOs, doesn’t it? Earlier this year I wrote about Google Project Ara, the so-called “LEGO” smart phone architecture unveiled in April. Project Ara uses the MIPI Alliance UniPro and M-PHY protocols as the backbone for a modular electronics architecture inside a smart phone “endoskeleton.” Using electro-permanent magnets (they don’t need a perma... » read more

Google Project Ara And The Low-Power Imperative

You’ve no doubt seen the slides: 50 billion Internet of Things (IoT) devices by 2020. That’s an amazing number, but consider this: What if they each draw 1W? All things begin equal, we’d have to build another 50 nuclear power plants in the world to handle that additional energy requirement. (Something tells me that outcome is unrealistic). Power takes center stage as we evolve into ... » read more