Blog Review: Aug. 29


Mentor's Joe Hupcey III addresses inconclusive results in formal verification with tips on how to reduce the complexity of “assumption” properties to make them easier for the formal engines to digest and reach a solution. Cadence's Meera Collier looks beyond the immediate appeal of autonomous cars to the broader social implications of urban sprawl, public transit funding, and gentrificat... » read more

Growth Ahead For Vacuum Subsystems


Vacuum pumps, pressure gauges and vacuum valves combined make up the biggest expense on the bill of materials for semiconductor OEMs. In 2017, almost $2.5 billion worth of vacuum subsystems were consumed by the semiconductor industry with over half supplied by vendors based in Europe. Vacuum subsystems sales account for one third of expenditure on all critical subsystems used in semiconducto... » read more

Mixed Outlook For Semi Biz


Both the IC and fab equipment industries have been enjoying a boom cycle for some time, but they could be facing speed bumps and possibly turbulence in the second half of this year and into 2019. In the first half of 2018, the industry was fueled by the momentum carried over from 2017. DRAM prices remained relatively high, which contributed to the revenue growth in the overall IC industry. M... » read more

Blog Review: July 11


Synopsys' Taylor Armerding warns that while significant router vulnerabilities have been known about for years, security mostly hasn't been getting better, leading to a 539% increase in attacks targeting routers since the fourth quarter of 2017. In a video, Mentor's Colin Walls walks through how to deal with the initialization of non-volatile RAM in embedded programming, including suggestion... » read more

What Else Is In A Node?


In part one of this blog, I reported on the 2018 Industry Strategy Symposium (ISS) where Dan Hutcheson of VLSI Research led a panel with representatives of Synopsys, NVIDIA, Intel, ASML and Applied Materials. The participants discussed how the industry is focused on simultaneously squeezing more capabilities from leading-nodes, inter-nodes and trailing-nodes to drive advances in computing. I to... » read more

Blog Review: June 20


Mentor's Randy Allen digs into OpenACC, a collection of directives and routines to help a compiler uncover and schedule parallelism, plus an examination of the GCC implementation's performance. Cadence's Paul McLellan takes a look at the shifting opinions on FD-SOI vs. finFET as Dan Hutcheson of VLSI Research finds most see the two as complementary technologies in his latest survey. Synop... » read more

The Best in Test


“The 10 Best Semiconductor Equipment Supplier Rankings for 2018” was recently released by VLSI Research. Teradyne and Advantest placed first and second, respectively, in the large-company rankings, each rating five stars, based on evaluations by customers. Xcerra placed fifth in the focused-company rankings, with four-and-a-half stars. The market research firm also ranked the top vendors... » read more

What’s In A Node?


In an environment where process nodes are no longer consistently delivering the level of improvements predicted by Moore’s Law, the industry will continue to develop “inter-nodes” as a way to deliver incremental improvements in lieu of “full-nodes.” A shift in market requirements, in part due to the rise of AI and IoT, is increasing emphasis on trailing-nodes. When it comes to leading... » read more

Blog Review: May 30


Cadence's Paul McLellan listens in as Krste Asanović explains the history of AI and the birth of neural networks, the role of GPUs, and challenges for the future. Synopsys' Amit Tyagi examines high speed memory interfaces with a look at the basic operations of Toggle3NAND/Toggle2NAND and how they delivers higher performance at lower power consumption. Mentor's Mike Santarini chats with A... » read more

Quantum Effects At 7/5nm And Beyond


Quantum effects are becoming more pronounced at the most advanced nodes, causing unusual and sometimes unexpected changes in how electronic devices and signals behave. Quantum effects typically occur well behind the curtain for most of the chip industry, baked into a set of design rules developed from foundry data that most companies never see. This explains why foundries and manufacturing e... » read more

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