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 Decoding Formal
Dr. Jin Zhang
Dr. Jin Zhang
Jin Zhang has over 15 years of experience working in EDA, driving the effort of bringing new products and services to market. At Oski Technology, she is responsible for Oski’s overall marketing strategy as well as business development in Asia Pacific. Prior to that, she was the General Manager at … More »

The Impact of Great Teachers

May 1st, 2015 by Dr. Jin Zhang

My daughter has been learning violin for the last 5 years with a wonderful Suzuki teacher. She emphasizes proper posture, beautiful tone and a good work ethic. This has built a solid foundation for my daughter to venture into learning other instruments. Last fall my daughter started playing flute for her school band, and viola at Young String Ensemble, the youngest division of Portland Youth Philharmonic, founded in 1929 as the first youth orchestra in the United States.

To help her prepare for the upcoming audition for the more advanced Portland Youth Conservatory Orchestra, we decided she would take some viola lessons with the Oregon Symphony Principal Violist. We were totally blown away after just one lesson.

“It feels like I had a two-hour lesson”, my daughter exclaimed after meeting her teacher for the first time. Indeed, in just one hour, she learnt a lot of advanced techniques and became truly excited about viola.

What occurred to me was with the solid foundation built by her violin teacher, she was now able to learn from a real-world practitioner whose techniques were based on decades of experience achieving and maintaining excellence in the profession, and this includes shortcuts and tricks to improve skill, faster.

This reminded me of what we at Oski, are doing for the industry. We offer a very intense two-week advanced formal training course with the goal of teaching engineers the best knowledge and experience we have learned as a company in decades of accumulated formal verification work at our customers, while assuming attendees have acquired a foundation on basics such as how to write assertions in SVA or use formal tools. As a real-world practitioner, we fought real battles and learnt some hard lessons that can only be learned by working in the trenches. We want to teach everyone what we have learned.

Formal can be used for sign-off, if you know all the special techniques. Our trainers have all completed numerous projects using these techniques. Our attendees will walk away knowing how to do formal test planning, how to write End-to-End checkers, how to calculate Required Proof Depth, how to overcome formal complexity using Abstraction Models and other techniques, how to manage constraints, and how to use coverage for sign-off. It is a one-of-a kind training course that only Oski is capable of delivering.

We often hear comments that it is hard to take 2 weeks for a training class given the tight project schedule these days. The famous quote by Abraham Lincoln, “Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe”, is still applicable today in our fast-paced world. Spending some time to sharpen the skills saves weeks of time and future projects will benefit.

To give people some understanding of what it takes to achieve formal sign-off, Oski will conduct a one-day tutorial at DAC covering the essence of the training material. This knowledge will help engineers decide how best to incorporate formal technology in the verification flow.

I am glad I have found some really awesome teachers for my daughter so she can improve her skills quickly and with the least amount of time investment. I hope you will do the same when it is time to learn formal. Come and join us for a one-day tutorial at DAC “Achieving Formal Sign-off!” on Thursday June 11. Space is limited, so pre-register now! See you there!

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