Debugging an IC design at the transistor, Gate and RTL levels is often necessary to meet timing requirements and understand analog or digital behavior, yet the process itself can be a tedious one, filled with manual steps, therefore making it an error-prone process. EDA tools have been created to help us graphically debug transistor,… Read More
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My background is IC design engineering, so it’s always a delight to talk with another engineer on their chip challenges. Today I spoke by phone with Sucharita Biswas, a Senior Hardware Engineer at Altera involved in IC test debug for FPGA devices.
In EDA we often talk about how fast a SPICE circuit simulator is, or about capacity and accuracy compared to silicon measurements. Yes, speed, capacity and accuracy are important, however when talking to actual transistor-level circuit designers you discover something quite different, most of their time is spent doing debugging,… Read More
My first job out of college was doing transistor-level circuit design, so I’m always curious about how companies are doing billion-transistor chip design and debug these days at the FPGA companies.
With an HDL-based design methodology many IC engineers code in text languages like SystemVerilog and VHDL, so it’s only natural to use a text-based debug methodology. The expression that, “A picture is worth a thousand words” comes to my mind and in this case a visual debug approach is worth considering for … Read More