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Archive for December, 2021

Imperas targets RISC-V verification

Thursday, December 16th, 2021

With its new ImperasDV solution, the company aims at enabling all RISC-V developers to accomplish the complex task of processor IP verification more efficiently

“The greatest migration in verification responsibility in the history of EDA,” from processor IP vendors to SoC designers: this, according to Imperas Software, is the challenge facing SoC development teams as they take advantage from RISC-V customization capabilities. One of the reasons for the success of RISC-V is undoubtedly the possibility for any SoC developer of adding some degree of customization to the basic instruction set architecture, while saving the processor compatibility with the RISC-V ecosystem of supporting tools and software. The other side of the coin, however, is a heavier verification burden on the SoC development team: as opposed to an off-the-shelf processor IP which is pre-tested by the vendor, a customized processor needs to be verified by whom performed its customization. Addressing this challenge, Imperas Software has recently launched ImperasDV, an integrated solution for RISC-V processor verification.

This new product is the main subject of the video interview that Larry Lapides, Vice-President at Imperas Software, has recently given to EDACafe’s Sanjay Gangal. In this article we will take a closer look at ImperasDV, adding a few details to the video interview content. We will also briefly discuss another major part of Imperas’ product offering, virtual platforms for embedded software development – along with the promotion of open model library availability through the Open Virtual Platforms (OVP) industry consortium. Based near Oxford, UK, with offices in Silicon Valley and Tokyo, Imperas software was founded in 2008 by Simon Davidmann, an EDA veteran.

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FTC opposes Nvidia-Arm deal; Mobileye to go public; Renesas enters the FPGA market; Toshiba to split in three; acquisition updates

Friday, December 10th, 2021

Catching up on some of the news from the last thirty days or so, let’s start with some market data: according to market research firm Omdia, in the third quarter of 2021 the semiconductor market surpassed $150 billion and Samsung Electronics overtook Intel as number one semiconductor firm in the revenue ranking, on the strength of its memory business. Moving to some fab updates, Samsung has officially confirmed it would build a new semiconductor manufacturing facility in Taylor, Texas, with an estimated $17 billion investment. TSMC, for its part, will build a specialty technology fab in Kumamoto, Japan, with Sony Semiconductor Solutions participating as a minority shareholder.

Credit: Omdia

FTC sues to block Nvidia’s acquisition of Arm

As widely reported by many media outlets, the United States’ Federal Trade Commission filed a law enforcement action to block Nvidia’s acquisition of Arm, “to preserve competition in markets for computer chips used in datacenters and in automotive advanced driver assistance systems.” The administrative trial is scheduled to begin on August 9, 2022. The FTC’s position about the “anticompetitive effects” of the proposed acquisition is described in detail in this twenty-four-page document.

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The Mirabilis Design approach to system-level architecture exploration

Wednesday, December 1st, 2021

Achieving 5x battery life without any hardware changes: according to Deepak Shankar, Mirabilis Design’s founder, this is an example of the benefits that can be obtained through his company’s system-level architecture exploration solution, based on the VisualSim IP libraries

System-level architecture exploration is an increasingly important task for designers, especially when it comes to optimizing power or performance for complex SoC designs. Software company Mirabilis Design (Sunnyvale, CA) has chosen to address this specific area, through a system-level simulation platform – its flagship product VisualSim Architect – that employs IP libraries built in-house. In the last year and a half, the company has seen almost a 6x increase in revenue and almost a 15x jump in the number of customers (source: Mirabilis Design data), partly owing to the new remote collaboration needs brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic. Deepak Shankar, founder and Vice President of Technology at Mirabilis Design, has reiterated the key concepts of his company’s approach in the video interview he has recently given to EDACafe’s Sanjay Gangal. For this article, he has also answered a few additional questions.

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