Verification

September 1, 2008

Building reusable verification environments with OVM

This article reviews the reuse potential within the Open Verification Methodology, with special focus on four particularly fruitful areas: testbench architecture, testbench configuration control, sequences, and class factories.
June 1, 2008

Accentuate the practical

When engineers discuss the status and value of the Design Automation Conference (DAC), one topic tends to recur. Fairly or unfairly, the claim is that there has long been an inherent tension between DAC the technical conference and DAC the exhibition. In short, the technical conference has been seen as biased toward tool developers; the […]

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June 1, 2008

VHDL moves toward 4.0

Version 4.0 of the VHSIC Hardware Design Language was approved by Accellera and passed to the IEEE to begin its formal standards balloting process earlier this year. The article previews some of the key additions and extensions that form part of VHDL in the following areas: Property Specification Language Intellectual Property Protection Hierarchical names Extensions […]

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March 1, 2008

How VHDL designers can exploit SystemVerilog

SystemVerilog, the standard that originated from Accellera and is now IEEE1800, is not just for Verilog users. VHDL users can also improve their design processes using its proven verification features. Anyone involved in systemon- chip (SoC) design may face a mixed-language environment and will appreciate being able to leverage SystemVerilog with the VHDL portions of […]

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March 1, 2008

Active power management for configurable processors

ARC International is one of the largest suppliers of configurable processor technology. It licenses patented configurable multimedia subsystems and CPU/DSP processors that are used to design differentiated products. They are optimized for use in systemson- chip (SoCs) that consume less power, are less expensive to produce and require protection from cloning. The ARC Energy PRO […]

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March 1, 2008

Parasitics: an old problem reaches new heights

The semiconductor industry faces increasing challenges in the design of complex systems-on-chip, and while some have sprung from new, only recently anticipated sources, others are, in fact, very familiar. Foremost among these are the interconnect delays caused by the increasing influence of parasitic networks. Parasitic inductance is also a growing concern. The causes of parasitic […]

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December 1, 2007

A verification methodology for programmable and reconfigurable processors

The article describes and illustrates, by way of a case study, an innovative approach to functional verification. It enables the reuse of test patterns through the coordinated combination of a top-level testbench and subordinate testbench modules. It is based on a new add-on tool, VTrac+, that extends Mentor Graphics’ ModelSim/Questa software to stimulate, compare and […]

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December 1, 2007

Asynchronous clocks prove tough for verification

For simulation to correctly predict silicon behavior, the logic implementing a design should adhere to the setup and hold constraints specified for clocked elements. However, with multiple asynchronous clocks on a single chip driving logic, designers cannot help but violate setup and hold constraints. This causes metastability, which in its turn leads to non-deterministic delays […]

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December 1, 2007

UPF delivers on power

Long before the first portable computer batteries exploded, and even before anyone had the first visions of building massive data centers in the cold northwestern states of Oregon,Washington and Alaska, power consumption by electronic devices was a tough problem for chip designers. The difference now is that we are trying to manage power in ever-smaller […]

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December 1, 2007

Visibility enhancement eases system validation for multicore SoCs

How visibility-enhanced debug works The emergence of ‘visibility enhancement’ technology provides verification teams with an optimal trade-off between simulation performance and signal visibility. Visibility enhancement enables a methodology consisting of an analysis-driven partial signal dumping procedure that limits the impact on emulation performance while still providing full signal visibility for debug. These are some key […]

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