Michael (Mac) McNamara, Gen Chair 54th DAC; Pres & CEO Adapt-IP
Mac is the General Chair for the 54th DAC; and is President & CEO of Adapt-IP, a semiconductor IP company that is focused on wired and wireless communication IP, with an emphasis on security. Previously, he was Cadence's VP/GM for System Level Design, which developed SystemC based Simulation, … More »
February 17th, 2017 by Michael (Mac) McNamara, Gen Chair 54th DAC; Pres & CEO Adapt-IP
When it comes keeping the growth of design productivity exponential, a key barrier that fell in the past ten years is due to the increasing use of social media, which set free the exchange of focused, expert knowledge, from user to user. On the web we have very helpful company-curated user forums; and often even better, the stack-exchanges which are user curated, where readers up-vote the most helpful content and as a result these are often the very best place to visit to get unstuck from a problem you recognize you have.
These forums and posts are all reactions against the underfunded, or poorly directed tech publishing team, tasked perhaps by marketing (or the simple desire to keep their employment) to only document what works; and never mention an alternative solution.
Of course a web search will also take you to the swampy places where all you find is others who are stuck with similar problems, and they just bemoan that the vendor doesn’t care, or take you through a litany of things they’ve tried that didn’t work. One also finds the beginning of tutorials, part one of what was to be a twenty volume tutorial where the blogger planned to impart the wisdom of the ages for how to build the magical thing – and only part one got written – and even that is now out of date.
So, search works great — when you have an idea what the problem is, and you are following a large crowd who has been there before, and they’ve taken the time to create hints.
Going hands-on at last year’s Designer/IP track session, with no marketeers in sight!
December 20th, 2016 by Michael (Mac) McNamara, Gen Chair 54th DAC; Pres & CEO Adapt-IP
Designer and IP track submissions are due Tuesday, January 24. These sessions have been among the most vibrant DAC elements in recent years based on attendance and anecdotal feedback. Chuck Alpert, my predecessor as DAC chair, explained why in a post last year: “Many of these technologists come for the Designer/IP track, a marketing-free zone aimed squarely at practitioners.”
The good news is that submitting is easy. All you need to do is bang out 100 words and six slides. You can do this, people!
More good news is the excellent industry pros in charge of these tracks.
November 10th, 2016 by Michael (Mac) McNamara, Gen Chair 54th DAC; Pres & CEO Adapt-IP
Time is the only critic without ambition. – John Steinbeck
Like many things, DAC looks decidedly different depending on where you sit, and how you experience it. As an attendee, it’s mostly a few days at the start of every summer where you can sample some of the best technical content on the design of circuits and systems, plus get the chance to network and have some fun with a worldwide audience that spans execs to undergrads. In contrast, as a member of the executive committee, DAC is the finish line for a year-long marathon effort to bring the best content, speakers and papers all together in one place and time, building on what works and improving where we can.
Now is the time for a reminder that if you want present a paper at DAC (especially a research paper), the 12-month calendar matters for you as well. Abstracts are due Nov. 15; manuscripts, Nov. 22!
October 6th, 2016 by Michael (Mac) McNamara, Gen Chair 54th DAC; Pres & CEO Adapt-IP
I’ve been attending DAC as an exhibitor since 1992, and serving on the executive committee since 2012. I am thrilled to serve as General Chair for the 54th iteration of this grand conference. (And no it’s not too early to think about DAC; the call for contributions is open now.) Through the years I have seen some big industry changes, most driven by the increasingly powerful tools and automation that this conference has been about — growth that fueled my career, as well!
My first job was as a chip designer at TRW, Sunnyvale back in the 1980s, and we had our own fab in Virginia, and my officemate wrote and maintained our chip design tools, as was pretty typical in those days. I worked at a series of hardware startups after that; and then took all that experience in hand to build better chip design tools. At Chronologic I led the engineering team that built the VCS simulator; then I started Surefire, where we built the SureCov and SureLint verification tools; we merged with Verisity and then into Cadence, where my team developed C-to-Silicon synthesis tools. If you’re curious, LinkedIn has most of the rest of the story, including the patents I’ve been issued.
April 26th, 2016 by Chuck Alpert - the General Chair for the 53rd DAC
All of a sudden it’s nearly the end of April, high time to switch from months to weeks (just six to go now!) in the countdown to DAC, which I can guarantee is going to be a great conference. One big reason I’m confident is that, as always, we have an excellent lineup of keynoters as worthy of a stage at TED or SxSW as at the world’s premier design automation conference. See my past posts on Peter Stone (Thursday keynote) and Lars Reger (Monday) for a refresher. And don’t forget the luminaries sandwiched between the two of them:
Tuesday back-to-back big thinkers will take the main stage. One is Louis Scheffer, a researcher at Howard Hughes Medical Institute. Shcheffer has spent a lifetime studying whether it might be possible to reconstruct the nervous system, a challenge given the boggling complexity in even the simplest animals. The humble fly brain that Scheffer studies has about 100 million connections. The success of Scheffer and his colleagues in mapping a small fraction of those connections, the region of the fly’s brain that processes vision, warranted a 2013 publication in Nature, likely the world’s most prestigious scientific journal.
April 4th, 2016 by Chuck Alpert - the General Chair for the 53rd DAC
NXP Automotive CTO Lars Reger to open DAC Monday; time to register and book your hotel | There is no hotter topic in tech than self-driving cars. How else to explain the worldwide headlines after what can only be described as a modest little fender-bender last month in Mountain View. The culprit was one of Alphabet, Inc.’s autonomous Lexus 450hs, by now a media darling/goat. Despite the apparent and very prosaic facts — the Lexus was traveling 2 miles per hour, nobody was hurt, it was the first at-fault incident in more than 1.5 million miles of autonomous driving, etc. — the event was and remains a modest sensation, online and otherwise.
“Google was dealing with a pronounced shadow hanging over its presence at SXSW this week,” wrote Nick Statt last week in The Verge. “Now the fallout [from the accident] has found its way into nearly every transportation-focused panel discussion here in Austin.”
February 12th, 2016 by Chuck Alpert - the General Chair for the 53rd DAC
Autonomous bidding agents to robo-soccer | What good luck that Peter Stone, one of the world leaders in artificial intelligence (AI), is right here at UT Austin. Stone will give the Thursday keynote, an excellent reason for you to make sure to stay through the final day of the conference.
February 2nd, 2016 by Chuck Alpert - the General Chair for the 53rd DAC
Every year DAC features something new. For the general chair, balancing tried and true conference elements with infusions of change is part of the art of putting on DAC and keeping it fresh. This year one change has to do with art itself — #53DAC features what I believe to be the first art show in the conference’s long history.
No, I’m not asking you to submit that painting you’ve been laboring over, perhaps with the help of last fall’s Bob Ross marathon on Twitch. Rather, this is a call for you to send in the best, most aesthetically interesting images associated with design automation today.
Examples include die photoshots of silicon designs, design floorplans and placemats, 3-D wiring or clock visualizations, lithographic images and thermal maps. But that list is just the starting point. Really, any image associated with how our community is helping to create the world’s astonishing array of electronic devices is welcome.
February 1st, 2016 by Mike Gianfagna
Mike Gianfagna is the VP of marketing at eSilicon Corporation
DAC stands for Design Automation Conference. Everyone: please stop saying “the DAC conference”. This may not be as widespread as folks calling an automated teller machine an ATM machine, but it’s still odd. But I digress…
This year, the 53rd DAC will be held in Austin, Texas starting June 5. I’ve been going to DAC for more years than I will ever put in writing. I’ve seen some marvelous things unveiled at this show. Innovations that impact IC design and manufacturing typically. This year will be different though.
January 26th, 2016 by Michael Hopkins, founder of CurrentRF
CC-100 PowerOp IP
The CC-100 PowerOp IP harvests waste energy (logic overlap current) in digital and mixed signal SOC’s, and recycles a portion of it back into the system for an overall lower system power profile. This IP allows users to save watts of power, depending on how much digital or dynamic power is being consumed in a given SOC, and can fit in the left-over “white space” of most SOC or processor designs.
In short, this IP turns the standard power saving techniques around, saving power when circuits turn on, thus complimenting, not competing with, standard industry techniques normally used to save power.
The CC-100 PowerOp IP has been realized in Proof-of-Concept silicon and has been produced and characterized on the IBM CM018RF RF manufacturing process.
The CC-100 PowerOp IP import is scalable to any IC process ranging from .6um to 28nm, available on request from CurrentRF Proof-of-concept, characterization, and design aid documents and boards for the CC-100 IP are also available on request.