IC Analog IC Layout 800x100

Using Processors in the SoC Dataplane

Using Processors in the SoC Dataplane
by Paul McLellan on 11-08-2011 at 9:17 am

Almost any chip of any complexity contains a control processor of some sort. These blocks are good at executing a wide range of algorithms but there are often two problems with them: the performance is inadequate for some application or the amount of power required is much too high. Control processors pay in limited performance … Read More


RTL Power Models

RTL Power Models
by Paul McLellan on 11-08-2011 at 8:00 am

One of the challenges of doing a design in the 28nm world is that everything depends on everything else. But some decisions need to be made early with imperfect information. But the better the information we have, the better those early decisions will be. One area of particular importance is selecting a package, designing a power… Read More


Managing Test Power for ICs

Managing Test Power for ICs
by Beth Martin on 11-07-2011 at 12:17 pm

The goal for automatic test pattern generation (ATPG) is to achieve maximum coverage with the fewest test patterns. This conflicts with the goals of managing power because during test, the IC is often operated beyond its normal functional modes to get the highest quality test results. When switching activity exceeds a device’s… Read More


3D Transistors @ TSMC 20nm!

3D Transistors @ TSMC 20nm!
by Daniel Nenni on 11-06-2011 at 12:51 pm

Ever since the TSMC OIP Forum where Dr. Shang-Yi Chiang openly asked customers, “When do you want 3D Transistors (FinFETS)?” I have heard quite a few debates on the topic inside the top fabless semiconductor companies. The bottom line, in my expert opinion, is that TSMC will add FinFETS to the N20 (20nm) process node in parallel with… Read More


ARM Chips Away at Intel’s Server Business!

ARM Chips Away at Intel’s Server Business!
by Ed McKernan on 11-06-2011 at 7:40 am


When Intel entered the server market in the 1990s with their Pentium Processor and follow on Xeons beginning in 1998, they focused on the simple enterprise applications. At the same time they laid the groundwork for what will turn out to be a multi-decade, long war to wrest control from all mainframes and workstations. The announcements… Read More


PC Growth Latches on to the Parabolic Curve of Emerging Markets

PC Growth Latches on to the Parabolic Curve of Emerging Markets
by Ed McKernan on 11-04-2011 at 7:56 am

One of the interesting tidbits of information to come from Intel’s October earnings call was that Brazil, a country of nearly 200M people, has moved up to the #3 position in terms of PC unit sales. This was a shock to most people and as usual brushed aside by those not familiar with the happenings of the emerging markets (i.e. the countries… Read More


Arteris vs Sonics battle…Let’s talk NoC architecture

Arteris vs Sonics battle…Let’s talk NoC architecture
by Eric Esteve on 11-04-2011 at 6:23 am

The text of this very first article about Arteris had disapeared from Semiwiki, for an absolutely unknowed reason…If you have missed it, this is a pretty useful introduction to NoC concept, as well as to the legal battle between Arteris and Sonics:

The Network on Chip is a pretty recent concept. Let’s try to understand how … Read More


Learning Verilog for ASIC and FPGA Design

Learning Verilog for ASIC and FPGA Design
by Daniel Payne on 11-02-2011 at 11:17 am

Verilog History
Prabhu Goel founded Gateway Design Automation and Phil Moorby wrote the Verilog language back in 1984. In 1989 Cadence acquired Gateway and Verilog grew into a de-facto HDL standard. I first met Prabu at Wang Labs in 1982 where I designed a rather untestable custom chip named the WL-2001 (yes, it was named to honor… Read More


High-efficiency PVT and Monte Carlo analysis in the TSMC AMS Reference Flow for optimal yield in memory, analog and digital design!

High-efficiency PVT and Monte Carlo analysis in the TSMC AMS Reference Flow for optimal yield in memory, analog and digital design!
by Daniel Nenni on 11-01-2011 at 9:00 am

Hello Daniel,
I am very interested on the articles on the PVT simulation, I have worked in that area in the past when I worked in process technology development and spice modeling and I also started a company called Device modeling technology (DMT) which built a Spice model library of discrete components, such as Bipolar/MOS /POWER
Read More


Meg Whitman Should Buy AMD and Take HP Back To Its Roots

Meg Whitman Should Buy AMD and Take HP Back To Its Roots
by Ed McKernan on 10-31-2011 at 11:16 am

Back in the 2008 financial Crises, GM was finally brought to its knees and had to face a radical makeover. They asked for a bailout from the government that allowed the unions to swap out lower compensation for equity, something no union would do unless the alternative was to shutter the doors. The bondholders and the shareholders… Read More