Transforming Silicon Bring-Up


Not too long ago, the return of first silicon from the foundry was a nail-biting moment as power was applied to the chip. Today, better verification methodologies, increased use of emulation, and more mature fabrication practices have transformed how teams utilize first silicon. It is about to be transformed again, and there are some interesting possibilities on the horizon. Much of what use... » read more

Thoroughly Verifying Complex SoCs


The number of things that can go wrong in complex SoCs targeted at leading-edge applications is staggering, and there is no indication that verifying these chips will function as expected is going to get any easier. Heterogeneous designs developed for leading-edge applications, such as 5G, IoT, automotive and AI, are now complex systems in their own right. But they also need to work in conju... » read more

The Challenge Of Defining Worst Case


Worst case conditions within a chip are impossible to define. But what happens if you missed a corner case that causes chip failure? As the semiconductor market becomes increasingly competitive — startups and systems companies are now competing with established chipmakers — no one can afford to consider theoretical worst cases. Instead, they must intelligently prune the space to make sur... » read more

Which Verification Engine When


Frank Schirrmeister, group director for product marketing at Cadence, talks about which tools get used throughout the design flow, from architecture to simulation, formal verification, emulation, prototyping all the way to production, how the cloud has impacted the direction of the flow, and how machine learning will impact verification. » read more

Adding Order And Structure To Verification


You can't improve what you can't measure, and when it comes to methodologies the notion of measurement becomes more difficult. Add in notions of the skills, capabilities and experience levels of individuals within an organization, which may affect their ability to adopt certain technologies, and it requires considerable attention. This is where concepts such as capability maturity models (CM... » read more

Debug Issues Grow At New Nodes


Debugging and testing chips is becoming more time-consuming, more complicated, and significantly more difficult at advanced nodes as well as in advanced packages. The main problem is that there are so many puzzle pieces, and so many different use cases and demands on those pieces, that it's difficult to keep track of all the changes and potential interactions. Some blocks are "on" sometimes,... » read more

Blog Review: May 16


Synopsys' Eric Huang looks back at why the USB On-The-Go specification was revolutionary in getting devices talking to each other and how the shift to USB Type-C and Dual Mode means it isn't needed anymore. Mentor's Andrew Macleod examines four different shift-left methodologies and the benefits of each in the context of automotive and autonomous vehicle design. Cadence's Paul McLellan ch... » read more

Hidden Costs Of Shifting Left


The term "Shift Left" has been used increasingly within the semiconductor development flow to indicate tasks that were once performed sequentially must now be done concurrently. This is usually due to a tightening of dependences between tasks. One such example being talked about today is the need to perform hardware/software integration much earlier in the flow, rather than leaving it as a sequ... » read more

Power Modeling And Analysis


Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss power modeling and analysis with [getperson id="11489" p_name="Drew Wingard"], CTO at [getentity id="22605" e_name="Sonics"]; [getperson id="11763" comment="Tobias Bjerregaard"], CEO at [getentity id="22908" e_name="Teklatech"]; Vic Kulkarni, vice president and chief strategy officer at [getentity id="22021" e_name="Ansys"]; Andy Ladd, CEO of Baum; ... » read more

Are You Designing The Right Product?


Development and production of SoCs is becoming more and more complex and expensive. And rightfully so, the semiconductor industry spends billions of dollars on verification efforts. Verification is about checking the design behaves per its specification, a process that is very important and well understood. Still, something can go terribly wrong because having a verified SoC does not guarant... » read more

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