The Ferry Building - Beautifully restored as part of the Embarcadero post-1989 renewal, not only should you visit, you should plan on taking a ferry to somewhere across the Bay.
Golden Gate Bridge - Start at the North end and walk across to the South end. Turn around and walk back. Wear a jacket and enjoy the view. Choose a day when there's no fog.
Hugh Durdan, Vice President of Marketing at eSilicon - While the tendency at DAC will be to focus on specific design problems and tool solutions, the real buzz will be: "How do we get this done?" Designers want options to make their lives easier; sometimes this means new tools, but that's just the beginning. Outsourcing, IP acquisition, supply chain management - these are a few things that will be discussed at the design team collaboration panel, which will look at organizational issues beyond tool usage. New tools get headlines, but headlines don't get products out the door! This year, look for practical solutions to big picture challenges facing companies today. The panel, "Design Team Collaboration: Tools Challenge or Organization Responsibility," is happening on Tuesday, July 25th, from 11:30 AM to 12:15 PM and includes firstRain's Penny Herscher, DE Shaw's Marty Deneroff, eSilicon's Prasad Subramanian, and Matsushita's Taguchi Hirofumi.
Joe Sawicki, Vice President and General Manager for Mentor Graphics' Design-to-Silicon Division - Mentor will be showcasing its new nmDRC, part of the Calibre nm Platform, which fully redefines the traditional physical verification process. The system provides real-time debug, incremental verification, and significantly increased performance to allow designers to reduce overall cycle time and address the increasingly complex sign-off process of nanometer designs.
Joe Costello's Keynote - It's at 2:00 PM on Monday, July 24th, on the main stage at Moscone Center. Take pity on other events happening at the same time, because I suspect Costello will be the main draw of the hour. Currently he's chairman of Orb Networks, but it's his legacy in the EDA industry that caused him to be invited to give this address.
John Cooley's Cheesy What to see at DAC - Rumor has it that you've got 'til end-of-day on Tuesday, July 18th, to send your special tid-bits to ESNUG's John Cooley if you want to be mentioned in the honor roll of contributors to his Cheesy Best of DAC column, which I believe is going to posted on July 19th or 20th. (I think that's the title of Cooley's upcoming pre-conference prose poem on the Design Automation Conference, but I could be wrong so don't quote me on that.) If you don't know how to reach Cooley, go to deepchip.com and search around 'til you figure it out.
John Fleming, Senior Vice President and General Manager for Electronics at ENOVIA MatrixOne - I think the buzz this year at DAC will be around the increased responsibilities being thrust upon IC designers. The boundaries around their job descriptions are already being removed, meaning that in order to be successful in today's environment where semiconductor development is becoming more integrated with other parts of product development, they'll need to be more in tune with the company's entire design, development and manufacturing process - and learn to look at the larger picture.
Jon Atwood, Chief Logician at The LogicWorks - Jon sent this description of his compelling new adventure, On Demand Radio The electronic design community needs an independent forum and a voice. On Design Radio is a new podcast created to provide a platform for open discussion about the issues that face the design community as a whole. Today, more than ever, open communication is needed to bring together the separate constituencies that make up the design community. It's no longer viable to communicate just within the boundaries of each group. EDA, design services, foundries, IP providers, and VCs need a forum to come together to share ideas and build the design community of the future. On Design Radio strives to be the voice for this forum. [Editor's Note: If you haven't yet tuned into Jon's online radio show, give it a listen!]
Kamal Aggarwal, Vice President of Marketing and Strategy at SoftJin Technologies - Growing system and silicon complexity are the two key challenges being faced by IC designers, which shall be highlighted at DAC. In order to address the silicon complexity, IC designers and mask makers need post-layout tools that are customized for their needs. At DAC, SoftJin shall be demonstrating an enhanced version of its Nirmaan tookit for developing customized post layout and DFM tools. To address the system complexity, a number of innovative programmable platforms are emerging. At DAC, SoftJin will be demonstrating its Programmable Synthesis Engine that is customizable for specific architectures, thus enabling vendors to offer optimized and affordable synthesis solutions.
Legion of Honor - The single most beautiful location in The City, don't miss it. The views out to the Golden Gate Bridge, across the fairways of Lincoln Park, are legendary. The museum itself is lovely, as well. In a nod to Paris - the French paid for the museum after The Great War - the front patio comes complete with a petite glass pyramid.
Management Day - The business of technology is just as important as the engineering of technology. There's a plethora of presentations, sessions, and panels happening all day Tuesday, July 25th, that address the business side of the high-tech equation. Check it all out in the DAC schedule and plan to attend some or all of the offerings there.
Mark Hopkins - The lobby is small, The Top of the Mark is not. Every GI who passed through San Francisco between 1941 and 1945 was there at one point or another. Go and find out why.
Modesto Casas, President of In Region Inc. - This year's buzz will be the same buzz as last year's, and to some extent the year before. Got ESL? I believe that some EDA vendors are beginning to partition the problem, create solutions, and define what ESL means in terms of value to customers. That should make a buzz. Otherwise, you'll need a Platitudes@DAC section in your post-DAC newsletter.
Nanotubes, Nanowires, Nanochips, and Bio anything - Do you want to hear about the future? Go look at the DAC schedule. Pinpoint anything that starts with "nano." Go there. Bring the DAC Proceedings with you. You may need to be following the script as the play unfolds.
SF MOMA - The Museum of Modern Art is right across the street from Moscone. You have zero excuses for not carving out some time to go see it.
OVL at DAC - The OVL Technical Committee Meeting will have an open meeting on Wednesday, July 26th, from 1:30 PM to 3:30 PM, at the Marriott Hotel, Golden Gate Room B2.
Paul Rowbottom, Director of Technical Marketing at Advantest Technology Solutions - Advantest will demonstrate its new CertiMAX product. CertiMAX enables "real world" event-based semiconductor validation using a PXI-based environment without imposing any of the traditional limitations of cycle-based test. It revolutionizes the validation environment by allowing the functional verification, debug, and characterization of first silicon without deviating from the design environment. Chip designers can literally take an industry- standard VCD file from a simulation tool and use it as is, on silicon. By allowing the design data to be used directly without requiring vector, timing, or format translation, CertiMAX greatly simplifies the validation process DRAMATICALLY speeding time to market.