Peggy Aycinena is a freelance journalist and Editor of EDA Confidential at www.aycinena.com. She can be reached at peggy at aycinena dot com.
December 7th, 2017 by Peggy Aycinena
This week on Thursday, December 14th, the second annual edition of REUSE 2017 will unfold in Silicon Valley. It’s a gathering crafted specifically for the vendors of IP blocks, and now whole sub-systems, those pieces of the puzzle which allow the vendors’ customers to design and produce electronic products more efficiently and with better results.
It goes without saying that IP is a pivotal part of the semiconductor supply chain today. Organizations like Arm and Synopsys reap huge benefits from being among the principal suppliers of that IP. But there are hundreds of IP companies in the world – big, medium, and small – that also provide IP.
Potentially, they could all be participating in something like Reuse 2017. Arm, for instance, is participating in the conference, along with dozens of smaller companies. Synopsys, however, is not.
Read the rest of REUSE 2017: Opportunity knocks, Who’s answering
November 30th, 2017 by Peggy Aycinena
San Jose-based Sonics is a long-established IP vendor specializing in On-chip Networks [NoC] and Energy Processing Units [EPU]. Co-founded by CEO Grant Pierce and CTO Drew Wingard, the company has 150 parents and has “supported customer products that have shipped more than 4 billion SoCs.”
Currently Grant Pierce is an exceptionally busy man. Not only is he leading Sonics, he’s also serving as Chair of the ESD Alliance. It’s a fortunate circumstance to have Pierce leading the Alliance; his point of view is exactly what’s needed to help shape what was originally an EDA-focused organization into something that embraces the full set of constituencies driving electronic system design today. Pierce is strongly committed to new technologies and the small companies that drive the innovation.
Pierce and I spoke by phone in late November. He is clearly very enthused about the company and the ESD Alliance.
Read the rest of Sonics: Leading the industry by example
November 16th, 2017 by Peggy Aycinena
Dr. Gabriel Saucier has a lot to be proud of. The Grenoble-based organization she founded, Design and Reuse, is celebrating the 20th anniversary of its flagship conference: IP-SoC.
To celebrate, IP-SoC 2017 is showcasing two of the biggest names in the IP industry – Synopsys CEO Dr. Aart de Geus and ARM founder Sir Robin Saxby. That’s pretty news worthy and a distinct reflection of the significant role Design and Reuse has played for more than two decades in promoting the wide-spread development and reuse of semiconductor IP.
Of course, it’s also worth noting that de Geus and Saxby will not be the only speakers with deep expertise in the technology.
Read the rest of IP-SoC 2017 – Headliners include de Geus, Saxby
November 9th, 2017 by Peggy Aycinena
Simon Segars has been CEO of UK-based ARM Holdings since 2013. When he first joined the company in 1991, he was employee No. 16, and was there when the company went public in 1998.
Last year, Japan-based SoftBank purchased ARM for $32 billion, just a few days after the Brexit vote, and took the company private. This year, SoftBank sold 25-percent of ARM to Saudi Arabia, in a deal that was part of the company’s (and kingdom’s) Vision Fund juggernaut.
Simon Segars has more than survived all of this change. He is still CEO of the most ubiquitous IP provider in the world, and now also has a seat on the Board of Directors of SoftBank.
As I prepared for my phone call with Segars last week, I was pretty sure he would decline to answer the bulk of the questions on my list. Surprisingly, however, he answered all of them, with ease and on the record. We started with the most astonishing news of all: ARM has changed its name.
Read the rest of Arm Momentum: Segars embraces exciting times
November 2nd, 2017 by Peggy Aycinena
U.C. Berkeley Prof. Alberto Sangiovanni-Vincentelli has just been named non-Executive Chairman of UltraSoC, an IP provider based in Cambridge. He was in Rome when we spoke this week by phone about the news.
UltraSoC CEO Rupert Baines was also on the conference call, dialing in from the UK, while I was in Silicon Valley. The conversation began with a discussion of Sangiovanni-Vincentelli’s ongoing research work in Singapore.
Three sentences, four geographies: What more proof is needed that the semiconductor industry is indeed global?
Read the rest of UltraSoC: Sangiovanni-Vincentelli now leads Board
October 26th, 2017 by Peggy Aycinena
When Cliosoft Founder and CEO Srinath Anantharaman and I spoke recently, it was an energetic conversation. Not surprising, given that the company has 250+ customers worldwide, and exhibits at conferences around the globe.
Adding to the momentum for Cliosoft: In May, the company announced designHUB: “A collaborative IP reuse ecosystem that enables companies to efficiently reuse all types of IP, including semiconductor IP, scripts, PDKs, documents, methodologies, etc. within the company, along with the user experience.”
Anantharaman is clearly enthused about the possibilities designHUB presents for the company’s customers, and is equally enthused about Cliosoft itself.
Read the rest of Cliosoft: Managing the IP Reuse Ecosystem
October 19th, 2017 by Peggy Aycinena
The Electronic System Design Alliance began life as the EDA Consortium over 25 years ago. Early last year, EDAC morphed into the ESD Alliance thanks to the efforts of many, not the least being ESD Alliance Executive Director Bob Smith, now in his third year serving in that role.
As currently I am mid-way through the process of speaking to the leadership of all of the member companies in the ESD Alliance, it was good to talk recently with Smith and discuss his vision for the future of the organization. His enthusiasm mirrors that of the many companies I have spoken with so far.
Read the rest of Bob Smith: Expanding horizons for ESD Alliance
October 11th, 2017 by Peggy Aycinena
After two years in Austin, the Design Automation Conference is returning to San Francisco for two good reasons: The City’s Moscone Convention Center has been thoroughly remodeled since DAC’s last visit in 2015 – enlarged, reworked, modernized – and the industries that fuel DAC – electronic design automation, system design, IP, and embedded systems – have a powerful and historic presence in Silicon Valley, a where place many in these disciplines work and live.
Hence June 2018 will witness a glamorous return to the Bay Area for DAC, and all its stakeholders, not the least being next year’s General Chair and Notre Dame CSE Professor, Dr. X. Sharon Hu.
In a recent phone call, Hu said it’s particularly exciting to be coming back to San Francisco, because the City is one of her favorite venues.
In preparation for DAC in 2018 and to similarly enhance anticipation for her Executive Committee – that group of hard-working volunteers who work the magic each year bringing DAC to fruition – Hu recently hosted a team building exercise here in 2017 in the just-reopened Moscone West portion of the massive complex. The group made sushi, and with pictures of the cook-off trending on Twitter, she laughed when I asked how it all went.
Read the rest of DAC 2018: New venue, Fresh start, Great leadership
October 5th, 2017 by Peggy Aycinena
Hangzhou C-SKY Microsystems, a 32-bit CPU vendor, became a member of the ESD Alliance in 2016 and was described at the time as “the first IP company from China to join.”
Founded in 2001, C-Sky has “developed 7 types of embedded CPUs covering a wide range of embedded applications including smart devices in IoT, digital audio and video, information security, network and communications, industrial control and automotive electronics. It is the only embedded CPU volume provider in China with its own instruction set architecture, the Yun-on-Chip architecture developed in conjunction with Alibaba.”
C-Sky is a growing IP company serving an enormous market. I spoke recently by phone with Dr. Xiaoning Qi, CEO at C-Sky, who was in California attending meetings. No stranger to Silicon Valley, he previously served at Intel, Rambus, Synopsys, and Sun, after completing his Ph.D. under Prof. Robert Dutton at Stanford.
Read the rest of C-Sky Microsystems: Big Dreams and a 100-year Vision
September 28th, 2017 by Peggy Aycinena
Sage Design Automation offers iDRM – integrated design rule management – a “true design rule compiler that enables quick graphical capturing of design rules and uses them as executable expressions for Specification, Communication, Validation, DRC, Analysis, Deck validation and coverage, and DRC deck generation.”
But this is not about Sage, it’s about how Sage fits into an evolving industry from the point of view of Raul Camposano, EDA veteran, former CTO at Synopsys, and currently CEO at Sage. Like so many serving in leadership roles in the industry, Dr. Camposano is a man of good cheer and an optimistic observer.
Read the rest of Sage: Who Checks the Checkers?