Top Articles For 2015 In SLD And LPHP


Knowing your readership is the first step in being able to serve them better, and judging by the traffic increases this year, we must be doing quite a few things right. We have now completed our second full year and the first full year for the Knowledge Center (KC). We are pleased with the way in which the two are playing together but there is still a lot of work ahead of and many holes to fill. Please see Jesse’s blog about the top ranking articles in the KC for this year.

Looking through the stats, the top stories fall into two main categories: articles that are about new technologies and the problems associated with new nodes, and articles about mergers and acquisitions.

It is also worth noting that such a list should be biased toward articles published earlier in the year because they have had a greater time to build up search related hits, but we do see some quite recent articles in the list. In fact the list is biased towards those published in the second half of this year. This is a testament to the fact that our readership continues to grow significantly.

Starting with the top SLD content in reverse order:

GF Closes On IBM Chip Business Purchase – July 1st
This article looked at the assets that GlobalFoundries was acquiring from IBM and the new technologies and domain knowledge that will enable GF to enter new markets.

Electronics Butterfly Effect – August 27th
Everyone has heard of the butterfly effect where a small change in a non-linear system can result in large difference in an outcome. For the past 40 years, the electronics industry has approximated a linear system, fed primarily by Moore’s Law. The incremental changes available at each new process node have led us to make incremental changes and improvements in many aspects of the design, its architecture and the design process, but all of that is changing.

The Future Of Moore’s Law – July 22nd
This is the first time that one of our roundtables has made it into the top articles and hardly a surprise given the lineup. Semiconductor Engineering sat down to discuss the future of Moore’s Law with Jan Rabaey, Lucio Lanza, Subramani Kengeri, Charlie Cheng, Mike Gianfagna, and Ron Moore.

Mentor Graphics Buys Tanner EDA – Feb 26th
Mentor Graphics purchased Tanner EDA. The acquisition moves Mentor squarely into the analog and mixed signal tools world, while positioning it to play a much bigger role in the Internet of Things market.

And the most popular SLD article this year is:
First Look: 10nm – Jan 29th
Tools are qualified, IP is characterized, and the first test chips are being produced. It’s still too early for production, of course—perhaps three years too early—but there is enough information being collected to draw at least some impressions about just how tough this next node will be.

Switching to LPHP, the top articles were, in reverse order:
Is Dark Silicon Wasted Silicon? – April 9th
The concept of dark silicon sounds almost mysterious, but it is a simple matter of physics. With advances in technology nodes and the ability to pack more and more transistors on the same die, design engineers are reaching a wall where only a fraction of a design can be powered on due to power and thermal implications.

How Long Will FinFETs Last? – October 7th
Another roundtable making the top list, this one discussing the longevity of finFETS with Vassilios Gerousis, Juan Rey, Kelvin Low, Victor Moroz.

First Look: 5nm – October 15th
By the time the 5nm semiconductor manufacturing process node reaches mass production readiness, the hurdles and challenges will no longer be open for discussion. But as of this moment, some of them seem almost insurmountable, raising new questions about the continued viability of Moore’s Law.

Intel Acquires Docea Power – August 14th
Intel has quietly done another EDA acquisition, this time buying Docea Power, a small company based in Moirans, France. Docea had high-level power and thermal estimation tools. The acquisition closed July 31st.

And the winner for LPHP is:
Fundamental Shifts In Chip Business – August 17th
Shifting business models, acquisitions, minority investments and increasing uncertainty are creating fundamental shifts in the semiconductor industry that could redefine who is successful in which markets for years to come.

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