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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.

#52DAC: Rumors & Realities

June 11th, 2015 by Peggy Aycinena

It’s always hard to capture the spirit of any particular trade show/tech conference when it’s as large as DAC. So here’s just a small sample of the rumors and realities being bandied about at Moscone Center this week in San Francisco.

* Rumor: The Exhibit Hall ran until 7 pm on Wednesday night, so if you wanted to see the bagpipes close out the show, you could see it if you arrived at the Cadence booth by 6:45 pm.

* Reality: The Exhibit Hall closed at 6 pm on Wednesday, not 7 pm as on Monday and Tuesday. The bagpipes closed out the show, but at 6 pm, not 7 pm. Those who missed it were very, very sad.

* Rumor: DAC’s Exhibition Hall has shrunk so much over the last few years, it’s no longer going to be housed at Moscone Center. After next year’s DAC 2016 in Austin, the show’s headed to the San Jose Convention Center in 2017.

* Reality: Moscone Center is being renovated over the next several years, so DAC’s going to be in Austin in 2016, in Austin in 2017, and (probably) back in San Francisco in 2018.

* Rumor: Intel’s buying Imagination Technologies. That’s interesting (if true) for several reasons: Intel’s going to get a (bigger) position in the IP market if they do it, and they’ll beat out other rumored contenders including Synopsys, Cadence, Apple. Whoever does buy Imagination may end up paying less than what Steve Ballmer paid for the L.A. Clippers.

cp_tsmc* Corollary Rumor: Imagination bought MIPS in 2013, a company that Stanford President John Hennessy co-founded in 1984, and that’s why Hennessy just announced he’s retiring next year.

* Reality: Intel is buying Altera and although it’s taken some time, the final price will be a tidy chunk of cash just south of $17 billion. Those in the know say the deal should be completed in 6 months or less, “barring any lost paperwork or other bureaucratic mess-ups”.

* Rumor: The folks from TSMC and the folks from the Common Platform actually enjoy each other’s company.

tsmc_snps* Reality: The foundries have such a huge presence at DAC. One has to ask how much they influence, individually or as a group, the arc of technology within the EDA industry. At one moment in the Exhibit Hall on Wednesday afternoon, TSMC was speaking in the Synopsys booth, GlobalFoundries was speaking in the Cadence booth, SMIC was about to start speaking in the Mentor booth.

* Rumor: There’s a world of security hurt ramping up out there. EDA’s next big opportunity will be in helping the semiconductor industry address this emerging crisis.

* Reality: Of all of the talks giving at the CEDA-sponsored DA Vision event on Monday night at DAC, not a single one focused on using DA strategies, tools, or methodologies to achieve better security in either hardware or software.

* Rumor: The Big Three in EDA will continue to (attempt to) sue the pants off of each other, because that’s far easier than actually branching out and doing something disruptive and new.

* Reality: Mentor Graphics scored a victory over the last remaining patent infringement allegation made against it by Synopsys.  The U.S. PTO agreed with Mentor Graphics’ assertion that certain claims of U.S. Patent No. 6,836,420 owned by Synopsys are unpatentable.

* Profound Rumor: The greatest journalist in the history of the EDA industry has announced he’s retiring.

* Profound Reality: He will be sorely missed.


apple* Final Rumor: The biggest company in the universe was just messing with your head when they made it seem like their conference was way more cool than DAC.

* Final Reality: No way, Jose!



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