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Peggy Aycinena
Peggy Aycinena
Peggy Aycinena is a freelance journalist and Editor of EDA Confidential at She can be reached at peggy at aycinena dot com.

IC Manage & Xuropa – Back to the Future

July 3rd, 2009 by Peggy Aycinena

It’s déjà vu all over again here in the summer of 2009.

Once again, bright entrepreneurs are working to deliver on the promise of web-based design,  project management, tool evaluation and sales – James Colgan with his Xuropa website that offers “professional networking, collaboration, marketing and product evaluation tools,” and Dennis Harmon with his IC Manage web-based Global Design Platform management tool that offers “design assembly, derivative management, content delivery, revision control, and release and configuration management.”

Why is it déjà vu? Because over the last 10 years, we’ve heard about these kinds of thing before. Web-based everything was going gang-busters at the end of the 90’s, much less so after the boom busted, and then back on the radar screen with increasing frequency as the overbuilt infrastructure turned out to be useful after all.

Now the conversation’s way past those quaint days. Way, way past. It’s no longer just about or Y2K. Now it’s about SaaS, Cloud Computing, Global Data and Design Management, and Teraflops.

But lest we forget how we got where we are today – the July 2nd Xuropa-Cadence Online Verification Lab announcement (see below), and the recent IC Management Global IC Design Management Report (also see below) that proves people really, truly do want to manage their projects globally – let’s take a (distinctly abbreviated) walk down Memory Lane.

Back to the Future …

June 25, 1999

The buzz builds …

“First Product Developed In Cadence-Synchronicity Technology”

The product was Design Sync (design data management using Synchronicity’s web-based client-server architecture interfaced to Cadence APIs). The partners were Synchronicity and Cadence. Look for quotes from Mike Gianfagna (Cadence).

March 8, 2000

Mike Santarini reporting in EE Times as buzz really builds …

“Monterey launches bold Internet EDA play”

The product was eDolphin (“web version of Dolphin physical design system running remotely on HP machines at the customer’s site or by co-location providers”). The partners were Monterey Design and Hewlett Packard. Look for quotes from Jacques Benkoski (Monterey).

March 28, 2000

Reporting in EE Times as buzz really, really builds …

“Cadence Unveils Its Strategy for the Internet Era”

The initiative was iCadence (“moving EDA to an e-services model … includes Cadence Internet Engineer, Cadence Internet Learning Series,, and”). Look for quotes from Ray Bingham (Cadence).

April 4, 2000

Richard Goering reporting in EE Times as buzz really, really, really builds …

“Cadence crafts new design-oriented site”

The company was SpinCircuit (“web-based supply-chain portal for pc-board market”). The partners were Cadence, HP, and Flextronics. Look for the quotes from Adriaan Lautenberg (Cadence) and Dave De Maria (Cadence), and references to Carly Fiorina (HP), Ray Bingham (Cadence), and Michael Marks (Flextronics).

June 1, 2000

Again, Mike Santarini reporting in EE Times as the buzz becomes manic …

“Synopsys and Avanti roll out virtual design shop

The product was Design Sphere (“open, hosted … fully equipped Internet-based design shop”). The partners were Synopsys, Avanti and TSMC. Look for the quotes from Aart de Geus (Synopsys) and Mark Milligan (Synopsys).

June 1, 2001

Peggy Aycinena reporting in EDAVision Magazine as buzz fades …

“Web-based Design: All the Glitters may be gold”

“Numerous EDA vendors have backed way off of their aggressive development schedules and, in some cases, allowed their web-based design tools to be ‘temporarily’ shelved until the economic conditions re-emerge to support further research and implementation of the products …

“This may be prudent from a short-term financial point of view, but those who are holding back may regret their cautionary stance … Long-term investment in tools that facilitate remote collaboration and IP evaluation is definitely warranted. EDA and IP vendors need to persevere, even in these difficult times.”

Look for quotes in the article from Mike Markowitz (Mentor), Trent Poltronetti (Synchronicity), Daya Nadamuni (Gartner), Bill Alexander (Monterey), Mark Milligan (Synopsys), Dan Holden (TSMC), Peyman Kazemhkani (TSMC), Kuochon Lee (CreOsys), and Mike Curran (Sweetcircuits).

July 2, 2001

John Cooley reporting in EE Times as buzz really fades …

“A Mutating DesignSphere”

Look for the quotes from Bob Wiegand (NxtWave) and Dave Burow (Synopsys).

December 17, 2001

Dave Maliniak reporting in Electronic Design as True Believers soldier on …

“Synchronicity And Cadence Team On IP Management And Reuse Infrastructure”

The products were IPinfraNET and IP Gear. The companies involved were Synchronicity and Cadence. Look for quotes from Dennis Harmon (Synchronicity).

June 8, 2004

Synchronicity sold to MatrixOne …

“MatrixOne Acquires Synchronicity for $18 Million”

Look for quotes from Mark O’Connell (MatrixOne) and Patrick Romich (Synchronicity)

April 23, 2007

Establishing robust web-based project management …

“IC Manage Announces Global Design Platform”

The product is Global Design Platform (streaming TCP, design assembly, derivative
management, real-time delivery, and IT integration using the Perforce engine).

April 29, 2009

The new reality of global management …

“IC Manage Announces Global IC Design Management Report”

Report written by Dennis Harmon (IC Manage).

July  2, 2009

Combining professional networking, collaboration, marketing, and product evaluation …

“Xuropa Launches Online Lab Featuring Cadence Verification IP”

“With only a web browser, approved visitors to Xuropa Online Labs can access the Cadence Incisive MIPI verification IP Components. Users can run simulations, employing them on example circuits … Users can begin to test drive applications in minutes vs. the days or weeks it used to take to get agreements signed, software downloaded, and keys installed.”

The product is Xuropa Online Lab, with partners Xuropa and Cadence. Look for quotes from Susan Peterson (Cadence) and James Colgan (Xuropa).

June 1, 2001

In the spirit of Back to the Future, the last word goes to EDA Vision …

“Web-based Design: All the Glitters may be gold”

“As recently as two years ago, web-based design tools meandered across a range of definitions – anything from e-commerce to application service providers to file management and revisions control. For the current players in EDA and IP, however, web-based design tools are those products that facilitate remote collaboration to a geographically dispersed design team, either across the campus or across the globe, and remote access to IP specifications and evaluation.

“This clarification of the definition of web-based design offers a refreshing ability to focus on a specific end-user and a specific flavor of tool. The get-rich schemes of the Internet Gold Rush may have lost their luster, but the opportunity for long-term profitability in web-based design is greater than ever.”


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3 Responses to “IC Manage & Xuropa – Back to the Future”

  1. Daniel Nenni says:

    Great discussion Peggy,

    Speaking of back to the future, I really think EDA should take another look at the Open Source business model. There are definitely ways to monetize, it will promote IC design innovation, and reduce the VC money required to start a fabless company:

    Open source tools and the fabless ASIC manufacturing model would definitely spur low cost innovation and bring EDA back to life:

    See you at DAC!


  2. Yes, Dan — I agree and said as much in my recent guest blog on EDADesignLine:

  3. Xuropa – people finally really want to manage their projects globally?

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