The Week In Review: Design

ATopTech files for bankruptcy, moves to sell; MIPI Discovery for driver development; new GPU IP from Imagination; safety-critical FPGA verification; hypervisor for Coretx-R52.



Back in 2013, Synopsys filed suit against ATopTech for copyright infringement. The courts found in favor of Synopsys and ATopTech was damages were set at a little over $30M. With appeals unsuccessful, ATopTech announced that it has filed a voluntary petition under Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code and has filed a motion to sell its businesses using a stalking horse bidder (an initial bid for the company assets from a buyer chosen by ATopTech). The sale is expected to be completed by March 31, 2017. Draper Athena, a venture capitalist that focuses on cross-border opportunities between the U.S., Korea, and China is expected to be the bidder.


The Phil Kaufman Award Ceremony and Dinner will be held Thursday, January 26, at the 4th Street Summit in San Jose, Calif., to honor Andrzej Strojwas, chief technologist at PDF Solutions and professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University. Dr. Strojwas is being recognized with the award for his pioneering research in the area of design for manufacturing (DFM) in the semiconductor industry.


Imagination unveiled three new GPU IP cores in its entry-level and mid-range line, targeting gaming and compute on devices such as premium set-top boxes, mid-range smartphones, and automotive infotainment systems. Each core delivers up to four pixels per clock and incorporate hardware virtualization, multi-domain security, and support for the latest APIs including OpenGL ES 3.2, OpenCL 1.2, Vulkan 1.0 and OpenVX 1.1.

CAST launched two media processing cores. The H.264-E-HIS High 10 Intra Profile Encoder Core is a low-power video compressor for moderate levels of compression, and requires no external memory. The CAMFE Camera Front-End Processor Core, by Ocean Logic, converts raw pixel data from a CMOS or CCD sensor to a video stream ready for display, processing, or compression.

Trilinear Technologies added to its video compression lineup as well with new Display Stream Compression encoder and decoder cores, which the company says provide a balance of processing clock rate and resource usage.


The MIPI Alliance announced a family of specifications, MIPI Discovery and Configuration (MIPI DisCo), with the aim of simplifying software driver development when integrating components in mobile-connected products. MIPI DisCo defines a uniform software architecture that can be used with a device’s host operating system to discover, enumerate and manage controllers, busses and other components that use MIPI Alliance specifications. The specifications are available to the open source community as well as MIPI members.

Safety & Security

Aldec released the latest version of its mixed-language FPGA design and simulation platform, adding  Finite State Machine (FSM) Coverage for FPGAs. FSM is recommended for verification of safety-critical designs, and enables users to determine which states and transitions in the state machine diagram have been executed during simulation.

OpenSynergy is developing a software hypervisor for ARM’s Cortex-R52 real-time safety processor, targeting microcontrollers such as domain controllers. The hypervisor technology enables several real-time operating systems and AUTOSAR systems at different ASIL levels to run in parallel on the Cortex-R52 and enables the consolidation of applications onto fewer electronic control units (ECUs).

Synopsys uncorked the latest version of its static analysis tool with particular updates for detecting the most critical vulnerabilities and weaknesses in Android applications as well as analysis and accuracy for JavaScript, Java and C# web applications. It also includes plugins for popular IDEs.


Rambus inked a five-year patent license agreement with Winbond, covering the use of Rambus’ memory solutions, including server DIMM chipsets, for Winbond products.

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