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January 26, 2009
EDA: Dead or Alive?
Please note that contributed articles, blog entries, and comments posted on EDACafe.com are the views and opinion of the author and do not necessarily represent the views and opinions of the management and staff of Internet Business Systems and its subsidiary web-sites.
Peggy Aycinena - Contributing Editor

by Peggy Aycinena - Contributing Editor
Posted anew every four weeks or so, the EDA WEEKLY delivers to its readers information concerning the latest happenings in the EDA industry, covering vendors, products, finances and new developments. Frequently, feature articles on selected public or private EDA companies are presented. Brought to you by EDACafe.com. If we miss a story or subject that you feel deserves to be included, or you just want to suggest a future topic, please contact us! Questions? Feedback? Click here. Thank you!

The electronic design industry appears to be up against the wall. Despite upbeat and amusing messaging, from this column and other insipid polyannas in the industry, the overwhelming evidence seems to point in a direction down and to the right. Layoffs and dismal despair – if that’s what you want, come on down and revel in it. See if I care. Take the easy way out. Heck it’s so in vogue these days, at least in my neighborhood.

My mom’s been critically ill since an emergency surgery on December 24th. Since that time, she’s been checking out further and further, day by day. Between endless meetings with doctors, nurses, and the like – patiently explaining to me and my family that there’s no medical reason why my mom should fail to thrive – I’ve been amusing myself with the inanity of the Internet. Turns out hospitals these days have free wireless, undoubtedly to soften the madness that sets in from watching family members wither. Between that and the tasty menus in hospital cafes – heck, you can craft an entire life hanging out in hospitals. Who would have guessed?

On one particularly brutal day in my mother’s descent into her own living hell, I logged onto the worldwideweb and to my astonishment saw the following posting on Yahoo financials from an anonymous fan, semicon20yearman, who has no face and has no name, but has enuff balls to be in the game:

Cadence has a new CEO ... from the Valley.

This means: We'll have to endure a long-winded article/message from the Valley's-own Peggy A., writer for EDA Cafe rag of rags. She'll list and drool over Lip-Bu Tan's credentials, over-state how wonderful it is to have a man of this caliber blah blah blah. Then there's the analysts opinions that will or already have been pouring-out about how great this should be for CDNS. Of course they'll say this ... they have no clue regarding this type of services/soft ware business, let alone the overall industry.


In my humble opinion, Cadence is done.

Blah blah blah

I read this passage out loud to my mother. She looked over at me and smiled wanly – I’ve always wanted to use that word, wanly – she said, “He’s right. Your articles are long-winded.”

I said, “How rude!” and asked her how she knew the passage had been written by a man. She just smiled, albeit wanly once again, but said no more. So thanks, mr. semicon20yearman. Neither medics nor medications could get a smile out of my mom. But you did.


As far as Lip-Bu Tan is concerned? Haven’t met the guy. In fact, have met with zero success in trying to set up an interview with the guy. And, to tell you the truth, know next to nothing about him. Except for what I’ve read about him online, of course. But we all know how reliable the Internet is.

I do know Gabe Moretti said in his column that the BOD at CDNS appears to have hired one of their own, despite the presence of other qualified candidates in the field. I do know that since Cadence named a new CEO in late December, CDNS stopped bottom feeding below the $3 mark, flirted with the over $4 mark, and is now wobbling along between the two marks, at least for now.

What that means? I don’t know, but I can guess – CDNS is down, but it may not be done. (I actually have no way to prove that, but it makes for great alliteration.)


DVCon 2009 …

Yeah, okay – so on February 25th there’s going to be a panel at DVCon 2009 in Silicon Valley, moderated by the Valley’s own. That’s me. It’s going to be a splendid panel, long on substance, short on nonsense, and worth attending.

There will be seven people on the panel:

* Ajoy Bose Chairman, President & CEO of Atrenta

* Diana Feng Raggett, CEO, President & Co-Founder of Javelin Design Automation

* Gary Meyers, VP & GM of the Synplicity Business Group at Synopsys

* Lauro Rizzatti, GM of EVE-USA

* Ravi Subramanian, CEO of Berkeley Design Automation

* Scott Sandler, President of SpringSoft USA

* Tom Sandoval, CEO of Calypto Design Systems

These brave souls are going to address the following question:       

          * EDA: Dead or Alive?

Per the abstract that I wrote for the DVCon program:

The EDA industry is suffering from a severe case of schizophrenia. One half of the EDA Brain Trust says the industry is Brain Dead, the other half says there’s nothing but Good Times ahead. Can we actually have it both ways? Is the industry stuck in the past with legacy tools, customers, and mindsets – or is there really an exhilarating future ahead? Ten years from now, will a re-energized EDA industry be generating billions and billions of dollars with third-party tools for cutting-edge technologies and expanded markets? Or, will there even be an EDA industry ten long years from now?

Questions for the panelists will come from the emerging EDA Blogosphere, and will cover everything from soup to nuts as we try to decide if EDALive! is more illusion or reality.

There are two funny things you should know about this panel.

1)        Somebody let me know, anonymously of course, that persons/people at one particular company were unwilling to participate on this panel because: "There is nothing one can say that would have meaning because there is no history upon which to base any prognostication about the future. If you take an optimistic approach, you come across as someone who is out of touch. If you take a pessimistic approach, you come across as a doomsayer."

2)        I asked Joe Costello to be on the panel, but he declined, albeit cheerfully as is his wont. He did give me an on-the-record quote about the panel, however: “EDA dead or alive? The only way EDA will be dead is if it kills itself!”

Unfortunately, as much as I admire Joe, I’m afraid he may not know what I’ve come to know over the last 5 weeks. There’s actually something that’s in between Dead or Alive. It’s called Failure to Thrive.

So, please join us on February 25th in Silicon Valley as we try to decide:

EDA: Dead or Alive? Or just Failure to Thrive?


Post scripts …

P.S. A friend of mine said mr. semico20yearman is probably somebody on the Cadence BOD, other than Lip-Bu Tan, who wanted the CEO slot but didn’t get it. That made me laugh. Out loud. I hope it makes you laugh. Out loud, as well.

P.P.S. If you’re a member of the EDA Blogosphere, you know who you are and you know how to reach me. Send me questions you may want to contribute to the panel discussion at DVCon 2009. Even if you’ve been a moderator of this panel in the past. Thanks.

You can find the full EDACafe event calendar here.

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-- Peggy Aycinena, EDACafe.com Contributing Editor.

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