Edge on EDA

Kilopass Memory Pill

Kilopass has published its number 3 issue of this year's Memory Pill newsletter. The issue features three perspectives on the next killer application for semiconductors: providing "lifecare"--intelligence that enhances the quality of life in smart cities, homes, highways, and even inside humans.

Evaluating a Transaction-Based Co-Emulation Methodology

Takashi Kawabe, Konica Minolta Technology Center, Inc.
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Mitsuhiro Matsumoto, EVE KK
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Konica Minolta Technology Center, Inc., of Tokyo, Japan, is known for its high-speed, high-performance LSI designs used in image processing. As most semiconductor companies can attest, it is finding that the hardware debugging process is getting more and more complicated.
As a consequence, it recently set out to evaluate various hardware emulators to determine the best implementation for a transaction-based co-emulation methodology. The goal was to improve hardware verification and SoC realization efforts of its hardware design team, and to drastically reduce the time it spent creating custom transactors.

The three-month evaluation set out to identify which co-emulation system best optimized a set of transactors. Konica Minolta selected EVE’s ZeBu-XXL emulator and ZEMI-3 transactor compiler.

EVE AT DAC

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Cindy Wilson, Marcom Manager, EVE

DAC is only a few short weeks away. At EVE, we’re busy finalizing our demos and presentations, and getting ready to ship our booth to the Moscone Center in San Francisco.

It’s an exciting time for us and we look forward to seeing attendees and fellow exhibitors again this year. Our attention will be focused on why so many companies are turning to EVE for their complex SoC verification needs.

Calypto Enriches Catapult C With the Release of Interface Libraries.

When Calypto first introduced its first functional verification product using a proprietary Sequential Equivalence Checking algorithm it likely did not have any idea of the breath of products it now markets. Since then SLEC has grown significantly in capacity and it now exists in four different products, each optimized for a specific purpose.

Synopsys Gets Even Closer To Silicon

One of the major problems facing EDA companies is how to expand into related markets in order to increase their revenue potential and at the same time lower the risk of being impacted by market fluctuations. Mentor, for example is increasing its investment in embedded software and in discrete systems. Synopsys is choosing the opposite direction and entering the market for semiconductors fabrication. The new acquisition is not the first one, but a way to increase the know-how and provide tools for additional applications.

Emulation Evolved, Part 2

Lauro Rizzatti, General Manager of EVE-USA

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In my previous blog post, I began an exploration of the evolution of emulation. Indeed, over the years emulation has evolved into a mandatory component of the SoC realization process, offering multi-MHz performance, improved time-to-emulation, and simulator-like debugging capabilities—all in a compact, low-power chassis.

But emulation providers like EVE don’t have time to rest on our laurels. The challenges of SoC design and verification are continuously changing, and it’s not enough for us to simply keep pace—we need to account for future developments as well. Accounting for future evolution in emulation requires both scalability and continued innovation.

Emulation Evolved

By Lauro Rizzatti, General Manager of EVE-USA

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DAC’s coming and, at EVE, we’re thinking about the evolution of emulation, a theme that you’ll hear more about from us. It’s been fascinating to look at how emulation has evolved from high-priced, hard-to-use clunkers introduced in the 1980s to sleek, low-cost hardware-assisted verification solutions that execute at high speeds.

At $1 million per seat, those early emulators were available to only the largest companies doing the most complicated designs. Cost alone prevented widespread deployment, and they quickly became outdated as new process technologies emerged, quashing their practicality and curbing accuracy. The maximum speed was about one MHz, slow even then, and they were roundly criticized for being difficult to set up. The designer’s lament was the excessive time to emulation.

Inheriting Emulation

Donald Cramb, Director of the Consulting Services Division, EVE-USA

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Recently, I've started to see an interesting trend cropping up in SoC development. Companies and teams are adopting or "inheriting" the emulation platform of their vendor, partner, or customer to accelerate the SoC realization effort.

Adopting a common emulation platform allows multiple organizations to share data and replicate development environments. Emulation tests for a critical block from an IP vendor can be replicated in-house, and later used as a golden reference model for verification at the system level. Leveraging a common emulation platform and use model enables partners, vendors, and customers to share a high-performance software development environment. Integration testing, along with driver and application software development can occur at multiple sites in parallel prior to tapeout.

The Metrics of Social Media

Cindy Wilson, Marcom Manager, EVE

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By now, you probably know that social media is kind of a big deal. Social media is literally changing the world, having played a significant role in political scenes around the globe. Closer to home, social media marketing is changing the way we do business, providing access to online audiences like never before. If you need some more convincing on the value of social media marketing, you can check out my earlier blog post, What Is Up With Social Media?.

We know that social media is important for our business, but exactly how important—or perhaps more accurately, how effective—is it? How do we know if our social media campaigns are having any impact? The number of followers of your Twitter account or fans of your Facebook page doesn't give you the whole story. Are your links being clicked and reposted? How many people do you influence? Who else is talking about you (and what are they saying)? As social media has evolved into a critical marketing tool, a host of new technologies have been developed to help you answer these questions.

Double Patterning Technology Models for Parasitic Extraction

"The manufacturing requirements at advanced process nodes, such as double-patterning lithography at 20-nanometers, are driving an industry-wide, intensive focus on newer parasitic modeling techniques to achieve signoff accuracy and performance," said Richard Trihy, director of design methodology at GLOBALFOUNDRIES. The problem is made harder to solve because the requirements are so specific to a given process methods, and not just the physics employed. Without a significant number of new standard formats and practices, design will soon become foundry dependent, significantly impacting the IP industry as well as the business practices of the semiconductor industry.