What Would Joe Do?

Posts Tagged ‘EDAC’

M&A: Mentor acquires BDA

Friday, March 21st, 2014

 

It’s Friday afternoon and spring is busting out all over, so why would anyone want to sit on a conference call and talk about EDA? Well, if you were Ravi Subramanian, President and CEO of Berkeley Design Automation, you would. The company he leads has just been sold to Mentor Graphics and today’s his day to celebrate the feat with the press.

I spoke with Ravi for 20 minutes this afternoon and remembered straightaway why he is the real thing. Well spoken, fully informed, and completely disciplined in his presentation, still his extreme delight with the acquisition was in full view as he patiently fielded my questions.

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Costello & Carlson: Buckle your seat belt …

Thursday, January 23rd, 2014

 

Long, long ago in a galaxy far, far away the EDA Empire began and quickly coalesced into several big players and a band of plucky startups constantly attempting to compete and stay viable.

Back in that halcyon era, Rick Carlson and Dave Millman decided to get those startups to pull as one, to try to keep the industry open and progressing, to protect the EDA industry as a place where new ideas could see the light of day and offerings from small companies could compete on a level playing field against those from the big players.

To do that, Rick and Dave came up with the idea for a consortium of Independent Design Automation Companies, IDAC, and put out the word to like-minded colleagues that this new group would benefit everybody. Creating IDAC proved more difficult than they had hoped, so letting pragmatism rule the day they approached Joe Costello for help, then CEO of Cadence, even though that meant working with one of the ‘big guys’ and hence, EDAC came to fruition.

To hear the rest of the story per Rick, recounted in a phone call in December, click here.

To hear the story recounted by Joe Costello, read below. I spoke with both Joe and Rick together on a conference call in mid-January.

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Revolution from within …

Joe began: “Rick told me he’s concerned that in his recent conversation with you about the history of EDAC, he may have sounded too harsh. I said that’s not possible, because the truth about the industry is quite harsh. Just thinking about it makes my blood boil.

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IDAC: What EDAC might have been

Wednesday, January 22nd, 2014

 

Before there was EDAC, there was IDAC. But before there was IDAC, there was just DA – Design Automation without Community or Consortium. The EDA industry consisted of a small number of large companies controlling the conversation, and a larger number of smaller companies who thought that if they linked hands they could do it better. It was Rick Carlson and Dave Millman who decided in 1986 to bring that group of small companies together to create IDAC, which stood for Independent Design Automation Companies.

According to Carlson, speaking on a recent phone call, “We wanted to get the small independent companies to work together in a cooperative way to deliver a solution, a flow, that was equal to or better than the big companies. And because even then, the leading-edge algorithms always came out of these small startups, we thought we had good solutions that the customers would appreciate.

“But there was a deeper, more fundamental issue that we hoped to solve by creating IDAC and that was how to grow the industry and foster innovation, whether in through a startup or an established player.”

Things didn’t work out exactly like Carlson and Millman had hoped for.

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Jasper DA: What the Future Holds

Thursday, December 12th, 2013

 

At a recent tech conference in Silicon Valley, I had a chat with a long-time EDA player; let’s call him Elmer. The conversation came around to Jasper Design Automation and conjectures as to what’s ahead for the company. I recounted a small compare and contrast.

At the 2008 February EDAC CEO Forecast Panel, Jasper CEO Kathryn Kranen was on stage along with Synopsys CEO Aart de Geus, Mentor CEO Wally Rhines, and then-Cadence CEO Mike Fister. During the panel discussion, Kranen criticized the Big EDA companies on the panel for their ‘all you can eat’ business strategies – the big companies providing less-than-best-in-class point tools for free to customers who purchased their anchor products, which Kranen said made it nearly impossible for the smaller companies to compete.

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Good times: EDAC says Q1_2013 a solid success

Wednesday, August 7th, 2013

 

Well, it looks like the industry has done it again, delivering good growth over a recent quarter. The Press Release issued by EDAC’s Market Statistics Service on August 6th detailed the numbers for Q1_2013: 8.1% growth overall, including 23.8% growth in Services, 20.2% growth in IP, and (a bit less glam) 2.4% growth in EDA. Interesting.

Meanwhile, Dr. Wally Rhines continues to contribute to the industry by making himself available for conversation about the MSS numbers as they are released each period, clarifying as always that his comments are on behalf of EDAC and do not reflect his role as CEO of Mentor Graphics. When I spoke by phone with Rhines earlier this week, I asked him if we can anticipate industry results for all of 2013 by looking at the Q1 numbers.

He said no, EDAC numbers do not portend the future, they only aggregate the results from the past. To know more about the future of the industry, Rhines referred me to the four visionary keynotes given at DAC by Synopsys’ Aart de Geus, Cadence’s Lip-Bu Tan, Jasper’s Kathryn Kranen and Rhines’ own talk.

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DAC 2013: Austin City Limits

Thursday, May 2nd, 2013

 

Wednesday night, at the outset of the EDAC Jim Hogan/Joe Costello event, the DAC 2013 General Chair, Synopsys’ Yervant Zorian, took the stage to present a plethora of reasons why you should be coming to DAC in Austin in June. Here’s his list in the order in which it was presented:

No. 7 – When the DAC Executive Committee went looking for Austin-based EDA folks to assist in connecting the design community in Texas to the folks who plan DAC, the EC expected 3 or 4 persons to respond. Instead, over 35 people raised their hands and hence the Austin-based DAC committee is huge and has done a great job.

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Cicero to Costello: Know your audience, breathlessly

Wednesday, May 1st, 2013

 

Joe Costello came to town tonight and wowed his acolytes.

Thanks to EDAC, Kathryn Kranen, Steve Pollock, Bob Gardner, Jennifer Cermak, Jill Jacobs, Gloria Nichols, and CadenceJim Hogan hosted Costello on stage at Cadence’s San Jose Headquarters for a 90-minute event that was one part Reunion Tour [lotsa Cadence alums in the audience in addition to the two on stage], one part Pity Party for Mentor Joe & Mentor Jim [oh so many visits to VCs who failed to embrace a startup's pitch], and one part Brag Fest for VC Joe & VC Jim [oh so many visits from potential startups whose pitch we simply could not embrace].

Add up those parts and you’ve still only got half of the content of tonight’s event; the other half of the Joe Costello Love-in consisted of a detailed Lesson in Rhetoric. Perhaps not surprising, given that the event was titled: Joe Costello Shares His Secrets for Communicating a Compelling Company Story. What is surprising is how closely Costello’s advice to his adoring audience mirrored Cicero’s Five Canons of Rhetoric.

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2013 Kaufman Award: U.C. Berkeley’s Chenming Hu

Wednesday, April 3rd, 2013

 

The EDA Consortium and the IEEE Council of EDA together announced today the recipient of this year’s Phil Kaufman Award for distinguished contributions to EDA – Chenming Hu, TSMC Distinguished Professor of the Graduate School at U.C. Berkeley.

Per the Press Release: “Dr. Chenming Hu is being recognized for his contributions in device physics, device modeling, and device reliability through BSIM and BERT models that have transformed the semiconductor manufacturing and EDA industries. Dr. Hu’s team invented the revolutionary 3D finFET transistor structure that simultaneously achieves size and power reduction to enable continued scaling of the microelectronic chips.”

Prof. Hu is a marvelous choice on the part of both EDAC and CEDA, but it is important to note that his contributions in EDA are the basis for the Phil Kaufman Award, not his work on the finFET – even though the latter is the hot topic in semiconductors today.

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Rhines: roadmaps built on EDAC and Gary Smith

Monday, April 1st, 2013

 

EDAC’s Market Statistics Service today announced Q4 2012 revenue and happily reported a 4.6 percent increase, year over year, compared with Q4 2011. Per the press release: “Sequential EDA revenue for Q4 2012 increased 9.8 percent compared to Q3 2012, while the four-quarters moving average, which compares the most recent four quarters to the prior four quarters, increased by 6.7 percent.”

Mentor Graphics Chairman & CEO Wally Rhines confirmed the industry’s good news in a phone call to discuss the MSS numbers. “A 6.7 percent increase is good and continues a reasonable mid-single digit trend in growth rate,” he said.

“Also, growth in the industry was pretty uniform around the world, except for Japan which showed a little weakness. Surprisingly, Europe was the strongest, while from a product category point of view, things remain strong across the front end, particularly in printed circuit boards. And interestingly, the survey data showed that the IP sold by EDA companies was stronger [in the market] than that sold by IP companies.”

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Accolade Opps: January 18th and 31st deadlines loom

Thursday, November 22nd, 2012

 

If you are looking for an opportunity to express your satisfaction with a colleague’s contributions to the world you work in, two outstanding chances currently present themselves. But take care: The deadlines for submitting your nominations quickly approach.

First, Accellera Systems Initiative [a.k.a. Accellera] has set January 18th as the deadline for submitting nominations for its 2013 Technical Excellence Award. Per the organization: “The Award recognizes outstanding contributions in the creation of EDA and IP standards [which are then contributed to the IEEE Standards Association] by a member of an Accellera technical committee.

“Any individual who is a member of an Accellera technical committee is eligible to receive the award, which will be presented at Accellera Systems Initiative Day during DVCon 2013 next February in San Jose. Candidates may be nominated by the industry at large and are endorsed by Accellera committee members. To nominate an individual, visit Accellera.org.”

If you want to do something really dramatic, however, the EDA Consortium is currently accepting nominations for its annual EDAC/CEDA-sponsored Phil Kaufman Award, which these organizations frequently refer to as the Noble Prize of EDA.

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Kilopass



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