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Posts Tagged ‘Synopsys’

Blue Pearl: Facilitating FPGA design

Thursday, December 6th, 2012


Shakeel Jeeawoody is VP of marketing at Blue Pearl. I enjoyed a long conversation with Shakeel at SAME Forum in France in October, and again at ARM TechCon in November. We completed the discussion by phone this week, starting with a brief profile of Blue Pearl and a discussion of FPGA versus ASIC design needs.

Per Jeeawoody, “Blue Pearl has been around since 2005, we’re located in Santa Clara, and our technology has all been developed in-house. Our underlying technology improves RTL analysis using symbolic simulation techniques and adapting them to our customers’ market requirements. We have competitors in the linting and clock-domain crossing [CDC] space, but not many that can generate SDC constraints and offer easy-to-use tools that run on Windows at an attractive price point to support FPGA designers.

“More FPGA designers today struggle with IP integration in their projects in the same way ASIC designers have in the past; if they don’t do the right level of analysis, there are reliability problems in the field. With that in mind, we focus on addressing emerging and major FPGA design issues – one we call Grey Cell Methodology, and we offer mode-based analysis to address issues associated with longest path analysis.


HAPS-70: a distinguished provenance

Monday, November 12th, 2012


If you’re an IP developer, or somebody who develops SoCs where blocks of IP land, Synopsys is announcing a product today that will be of interest: the HAPS-70 Series. It’s a prototyping system with a distinguished provenance that runs your ASIC-targeted design on FPGAs for validation prior to tape-out.

HAPS-70 started its journey to your work place way back in 1987 when Sweden-based HARDI Electronics was founded. The folks at HARDI developed the original HAPS prototyping system, which became part of Synplicity’s arsenal in 2007 when HARDI was acquired by SYNP, and the product was relaunched as HAPS-54.

Gary Meyers was President and CEO of Synplicity at the time, and was quoted: “This is a major strategic move for Synplicity. We will be able to immediately leverage our existing ASIC verification products (Certify, Synplify Premier, Identify, and Identify Pro) by selling them together with the HARDI ASIC prototyping boards.”


Ausdia: Sanjay Lall joins the board

Thursday, November 8th, 2012


It might be the impression of late that all EDA-startup roads lead to Synopsys, but that would be incorrect. Small, privately-held companies continue to make their way in the industry, independent and productive.

Ausdia, based in Silicon Valley, has been underway since 2006 developing tools for timing constraint verification and management. Today the company announced a new board member, Sanjay Lall. Per the press release, Lall has 20+ years of experience in the EDA and semiconductors, “an expert in operations, marketing, fund raising and sales.”

He is also Chairman and Managing Partner at Cronox Group, on the Board of Advisors at Verdigirs Technologies, and a Director at Mobi-holdings. Previously, Lall was VP of Sales at Extreme DA, and “influential in the company’s acquisition by Synopsys in 2011.”

All EDA-startup roads may not lead to Synopsys, but not surprisingly the CVs of most seasoned EDA veterans do lead to Synopsys, and/or to Cadence and/or Mentor Graphics.


ProPlus: DFY solution unveiled

Thursday, November 1st, 2012


The leadership of ProPlus Design Solutions has a long history in EDA, although the company itself is a newly launched startup. Ten years ago, the majority of the leadership were involved in Celestry Design Technologies, Inc., while 5 years ago all of today’s ProPlus executive team were at Cadence. Today the company, based in Silicon Valley, is building on those many years of experience to make inroads in the demanding market for design-for-yield tools.

In late September, ProPlus released its newest product offering, NanoYield for yield prediction and design optimization. When I spoke with Dr. Zhihong Liu, Executive Chairman of the company, he touched on the history of ProPlus and explained the intent of NanoYield.

Per Liu, “ProPlus has foundation technology in modeling that goes back to Celestry, a company acquired by Cadence in 2003. When the team bought the technology out of Cadence, they founded ProPlus and [worked to create] a unique DFY solution, design for yield.

“Before I joined ProPlus two years ago, they were developing lines of technologies for both high-performance parallel modeling and circuit simulation/analysis with true SPICE accuracy. Now we have put everything together to provide an integrated solution for designing better circuits in shorter time, including modeling, simulation and multivariate statistical analysis. No one else in the industry is addressing all three of these together.

“One technology that was originally licensed from IBM is a multivariate High-Sigma solution. We put that together with our own industry-validated solution, and now provide the only integrated solution in the industry, NanoYield.”


Canada’s Space Codesign: Calm, Cool and Collected

Thursday, October 25th, 2012


Montreal is not a place that normally comes to mind when you think of EDA. Space Codesign Systems, however, is on a fast track to change that in a classically Canadian way – calm, cool, and collected.

When I spoke with General Manager Dr. Gary Dare on a beautiful afternoon in Southern France at SAME Forum in early October, he explained how the company started in Canada, and the road map they have set out for themselves: “We’re an EDA company, an EDA startup, and we are definitely based in Montreal. If you doubt that EDA has a place in Canada, we will soon convince you otherwise.

“Space Codesign comes from the acronym, SystemC Partition of ACE, which was the 2004 research project at the Ecole Polytechnique [University of Montreal] that our technology is based on. In 2008, Professor Guy Bois and various graduate students associated with the project decided to do a spin-out, and in 2010 Space Codesign Systems went into operation.”

He laughed and added, “Our company has nothing to do with space, however. But it has everything to do with hardware/software co-design – doing it simultaneously, rather than the usual way of ESL hardware design followed by software design. The audience we are targeting is the systems architects who are looking at the algorithmic level and need a route to design exploration and implementation. Our tools give them that route.


M&A: Synopsys acquires EVE

Thursday, October 4th, 2012


Synopsys announced today it has completed the acquisition of EVE, the French emulation company that provides platforms for SoC verification. The terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

I interviewed Lauro Rizatti, General Manager and Marketing VP for EVE-US, in May of this year. [You can read that interview here.] Given the vigor of the messaging out of EVE at the time, it has come as a surprise to many, but undoubtedly not all, that EVE was acquired this week.

Per today’s Press Release issued by the two companies: “Emulation is a rapidly growing solution in the spectrum of technologies used to verify today’s highly complex SoCs. Integrating EVE’s technology with Synopsys’ best-in-class platform of simulation, debug, verification IP, coverage, static verification, low power verification, FPGA prototyping and virtual prototyping solutions will give Synopsys customers access to the broadest verification offering in the industry.


M&A: Rumor dampens spirits over cocktails

Tuesday, October 2nd, 2012


It’s not often that the rumor hits the fan that Synopsys is buying EVE, it’s not often that you’re standing in a cocktail party at a tech conference in the South of France, and it’s not often that these two events happen simultaneously.

When the Synopsys/EVE rumor swept through the cocktail party in Sophia Antipolis on this first evening of the SAME Forum, not surprisingly a lot of people had opinions. This is not just a tech conference, after all, it’s a microelectronics conference with an emphasis on design; EDA is at the center of the conversation.

This is also Europe and at the moment EVE, headquartered in France, is the darling of the EDA ecosystem on the Continent. The company is doing very well, is felt to be holding its own in a series of lawsuits with Mentor Graphics, and is widely admired overall. Needless to say, the reaction over cocktails that EVE may go the way of SpringSoft and Magma was not one of jubilation. Just the opposite, in fact.


Carbon Design Systems: a strategic investment from Samsung

Thursday, September 13th, 2012


Samsung Venture Investment Corp. has just put $4 million into Carbon Design Systems in conjunction with the debut of a new strategic partnership between the two companies.

Per the September 12th Press Release: “Funds from the strategic investment will be used as working capital and will support Carbon’s ongoing development of leading tools in the ESL design space, including its fast, accurate virtual prototypes. Initiatives will be undertaken to expand the reach of Carbon’s fast, accurate virtual prototypes.”

I spoke with Bill Neifert, Carbon’s founder, CTO and VP of Business Development on the day of the announcement. He was amazingly relaxed, a clear indication that the Samsung-Carbon partnership is a logical outcome of a long-term relationship between the organizations:

“Samsung been a heavy user of our tools for quite some time, and has been looking for ways to take even more advantage of that situation – to speed up product introductions, something that everyone’s trying to do in that marketplace.

“Today’s announcement is part of a Samsung initiative to advance their SoC design methodologies. They have both the resources and expertise today to innovate and are looking to us to help them with that. This is also a nice partnership for us, of course. It will help us share our methodology in a broader fashion.”

I asked if Samsung’s investment will jettison Carbon into an even better market position.

Bill said, “Yes, but this is a true partnership. It’s not just about money for Carbon, but about having additional access to Samsung’s time, expertise, and technology. Samsung wants to make better products, and enhancing our technology will also expand their customer base.”


Ali Iranmanesh: pursuing quality on a global scale

Thursday, August 9th, 2012


Ali Iranmanesh is a busy man. He continues to head up the Silicon Valley Institute of Technology, the school he founded in 1997, and continues to lead ISQED, the conference he founded in 1999. Now he is also leading ASQED, the Asia-based spin-off of ISQED Iranmanesh founded in Malaysia.

I caught up with Ali in early August by phone. He was in Silicon Valley and had just returned from ASQED 2012 in Penang, Malaysia.


WWJD: What prompted you to start ASQED?

Ali Iranmanesh: It was a natural extension of ISQED, which I started 14 years ago. I decided to keep ISQED in Silicon Valley, and to create other conferences for different regions.

WWJD: Remind me how many ASQED’s have taken place.

Ali Iranmanesh: This is our fourth year, with the conference alternating between Kuala Lumpur and Penang in Malaysia. Our next event is scheduled for August 26th to 28th in Penang.

WWJD: Malaysia seems an unusual destination for a conference on design.

Ali Iranmanesh: Historically, there has been a lot of manufacturing in Malaysia, but not so much design. I’ve been working with the several government entities there, helping them to move up the value chain through training, and was able to implement the conference as part of that process. Now for the past few years, there has been design going on in Malaysia – the conference has done a great job helping with that.


Wow factor: SNPS to acquire SpringSoft

Thursday, August 2nd, 2012


When it comes to wow factor, nothing outpaces the August 3rd announcement that Synopsys is going to acquire Taiwan-based SpringSoft. The announcement is astonishing for three reason:

1) Synopsys just announced the acquisition of Ciranova last week. True, the details of that deal were not released and Ciranova is not a ‘large’ company – still, two acquisitions by Synopsys in as many weeks is noteworthy.

2) SpringSoft is a publicly-traded company and therefore the details of the acquisition must be announced: Synopsys will be paying about $300 million for SpringSoft (net of cash acquired), which is a helluva lot of money …

3) … given that Synopsys has already executed another high-profile, high-priced acquisition of a publicly traded company earlier this year, buying Magma Design Automation for about $523 million (net of cash acquired).



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