Volume 5

June 1, 2008

Intel takes a new path from A to D

Justin Rattner will this year mark 35 years with Intel. His career with the technology giant has seen him collect numerous accolades, particularly for work in areas such as high performance computing (HPC). He was Intel’s first principal engineer and was its fourth member of staff to be named a fellow (he is today a […]

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June 1, 2008

Implementing an intelligent solar tracking control system on an FPGA

Given present-day demands for environmentally friendly, renewable energy sources, solar energy is becoming increasingly attractive. However, while solar energy is free, non-polluting and, in practical terms, inexhaustible, there remain significant inefficiencies in capturing it. For example, solar panels are traditionally fixed and in this configuration cannot capture the maximum amount of sunlight during changing weather […]

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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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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

A question of freedom

Although no EDA company counts among its membership (for good practical reasons), it is fair to describe the US Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) as one of technology’s most broadly representative trade bodies. From retailers and brand holders to the hardware and software companies that directly supply components for CE products, the CEA has a position […]

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March 1, 2008

Towards an infrastructure for profitable DFM

The real objective of design for manufacturability (DFM) is to improve a product’s profitability and manufacturing predictability for its market window and unit volume by optimizing tradeoffs between design costs and manufacturing improvements according to a holistic, lifetime view of the product. Current DFM practice often falls far short of that goal. For instance, the […]

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March 1, 2008

To pause and take stock

The headline number in the Consumer Electronics Association’s (CEA) latest market forecast contained a few devils in the detail, although the sector does seem poised to defy more pessimistic views of the economy’s prospects. The projection of 6.1% growth for 2008 is robust, giving just over $171bn in US factory door sales (Figure 1).Meanwhile, GDP […]

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March 1, 2008

The veteran competitor

In his early days in the semiconductor industry, Morris Chang Morris Chang was one of the “non-Texans” to Texas Instruments and was a manager struggling with the question of how to get individual transistor yields to somewhere around three or even four per cent. One of his colleagues – another immigrant to the Lone Star […]

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March 1, 2008

The European view

This year’s general chair of Design Automation and Test in Europe is Donatella Sciuto, a full professor at the Politecnico d iMilano in Milan, Italy. She received her Laurea in Electronic Engineering from the Politecnico di Milano in 1984 and her PhD in Electrical and Computer Engineering in 1988 from the University of Colorado, Boulder. […]

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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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