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Tom Anderson, VP of Marketing
Tom Anderson, VP of Marketing
Tom Anderson is vice president of Marketing for Breker Verification Systems. He previously served as Product Management Group Director for Advanced Verification Solutions at Cadence, Technical Marketing Director in the Verification Group at Synopsys and Vice President of Applications Engineering at … More »

Final DAC Roundup: Spotting Trends and Catching Frisbees

June 23rd, 2014 by Tom Anderson, VP of Marketing

Over the last few weeks, we’ve provided a look back at DAC from Breker, Jonah McLeod of Kilopass, and verification consultant Lauro Rizzatti. Today we wind up the series with some great insights and memories from five more DAC exhibitors.

For formal verification services provider Oski Technology, DAC confirmed what it’s experiencing: use of formal adoption is on the rise worldwide, notes Jin Zhang, its senior director of marketing. As is often the case, along with adoption comes the need for training and that’s certainly true for formal verification. Attendees and exhibitors alike stopped by the Oski booth to ask about advanced formal training. Yes, Oski offers several types of training customized to specific needs, and verified that DAC can be a great place to raise awareness and visibility.

According to Bob Smith, Uniquify’s senior vice president of marketing and business development, DAC feels as if it is in transition. “Fifteen years ago, it was all about EDA. There were tremendous issues in design and all kinds of new companies springing up with innovative tools. Now, there are some new companies, but the design flows have become standardized and the rampant innovation has moved into other areas. DAC appears to be moving to more of a systems show; witness the growing recognition of IP and this year’s automotive pavilion. We took advantage of the emphasis on IP to demonstrate the fastest DDR4 memory IP clocking 2800 megabits per second in TSMC 28HPM silicon.”

Lianfeng Yang, vice president of marketing at ProPlus Design Solutions, pinpointed four design trends from this year’s DAC. He noted that Gary Smith EDA identified a “big data” trend in EDA, a result of giga-scale design challenges and large amounts of statistical/variation analysis. DAC made it apparent that IP companies are booming because technology is moving forward, chip design is more complicated and expensive, and tape-outs are risky, requiring more vertical collaborations between design and manufacturing to squeeze margins from processes for better optimization.

Big players dominate the circuit simulation space with very few small players, even though DAC attendees were looking for alternative SPICE solutions for a multitude of reasons. All four trends create opportunities for ProPlus, developer of a recently launched giga-scale SPICE simulator and integrated design-for-yield solutions. “We got attention from a large group of DAC attendees because there are no other serious SPICE players except the big three since Mentor Graphics acquired BDA.”

He is prescient as well. Lianfeng developed two proposals together with Thomas Wong of Cadence, both ultimately accepted as pavilion panels that drew large crowds the first day of DAC. “Giga-Scale Design Challenges: Billions and Billions of Transistors” was moderated by Chip Design’s Dave Bursky with ProPlus’ Dr. Bruce McGaughy as a panelist. Later that day, Junko Yoshida from EE Times moderated “China Fabless: Threat or Opportunity?” Jin Zhang was a panelist, along with Limin He of Cadence and Professor ShaoJun Wei of Tsinghua University in Beijing, China.

“DAC always feels like we are among friends with so many of our EDA licensees exhibiting, and often dropping by to say hi,” writes Michiel Ligthart, Verific’s president and COO. “We had no lack of traffic and our pot-bellied plush giraffe giveaway was a hit, as usual.” More important, Verific saw a strong interest in its UPF parser, especially from the semiconductor attendees.

Dave Kelf, vice president of marketing at OneSpin Solutions, was struck by the diminished number of mid-sized companies exhibiting at DAC––they’ve all been acquired. On a more positive note, he uncovered many new startups in various areas of interest, including somewhere around 15 in the verification space alone. Another DAC trend he spotted is the advent of more exhibits within exhibits, including ARM, IC Manage and Aldec, a great way to bring in companies that wouldn’t ordinarily exhibit at DAC.

One humorous sight was OneSpin’s Vice President of Engineering Dominik Strasser winging Frisbees into the audience––at their request of course––gathering for a late afternoon pavilion panel, “The Asymptote of Verification,” moderated by Bryon Moyer of EE Journal. OneSpin was a sponsor, providing beer, wine and soft drinks. The red Frisbees were OneSpin’s DAC giveaway.

On that note, all that’s left for these companies is sorting through and qualifying the leads collected from DAC, and sending the appropriate thank you notes. If you have any thoughts on DAC this year, please feel free to comment. All the exhibitors would love to hear from you!

Tom A.

The truth is out there … sometimes it’s in a blog.

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