I recently grabbed coffee with Tom Kozas, President of Cadmazing Solutions. Since Tom’s staff works with a variety of domestic and international electronic designers spanning many industries, he sees a lot of different attitudes toward design tools. So I asked him:
Ed: So Tom, what about EDA in the clouds? Do your clients see that as desirable? Even viable?
Tom: It all depends on who is realizing the value.
Ed: When you say “realizing the value,” what do you mean?
Tom: OK, good point. EDA vendors have a completely different reality of their product value than do their customers. The EDA vendors believe that their product provides “absolute” value while EDA customers only see incremental product value. At CADmazing we deal with this reality with every customer and vendor we engage with.
Ed: Why the vast discrepancy?
Tom: Well, it’s the customer that commits the extra time and effort to go from incremental to absolute value for the complete design flow. As for EDA in the cloud it won’t fix the EDA industry.
Ed: No? Why is that?
Tom: Large customers already have their own clouds accessed through virtual private networks. So if a customer’s design environment included tools from each of the three top vendors, would this mean they would have to log into three different clouds?
Ed: Well, would the EDA customers then create their own cloud interface that all EDA tools would have to work? Or that the big three could create a standard cloud interface?
Tom: I just don’t see this type of collaboration happening among the top three EDA vendors. The industry would need something like an “Open Cloud” initiative that enables customers to have access to any EDA tool they want, especially from EDA startups – once the world comes back to its senses and starts funding them again.
Ed: So what’s your take on when EDA will be in the cloud?
Tom: Some EDA companies are already offering their products on the cloud. EDA companies will need to be careful that they are not creating a solution looking for a problem.
If EDA vendors want to successfully offer their tools and services on the cloud, they will need to provide an advantage that increases their customers’ business success. A technical and/or business advantage that goes way beyond outsourcing compute cycles.
Ed: Tom, thanks for your take on the EDA cloud.
Tom Kozas is President and principal consultant of Cadmazing Solutions www.cadmazing.com and has worked for years in engineering and marketing at EDA startups – such as Monterey – and established companies – such as Hughes Aircraft, Cadence, Compass. Cadmazing provides IC CAD development & implementation services for analog, digital, and mixed-signal system-on-a-chip (SoC) technology and full-custom designs. Tom’s email is: tomk@Cadmazing.com.