Decoupling Formal Technology from Formal Technology

OneSpin Lets Others Build the Apps

by Bryon Moyer

Formal verification technology appears in the ascendant at the moment. It’s been around forever, it seems, but it’s now finding its way into more flows than ever.

And that’s because users don’t have to deal with formal technology. The problem with formal is that it’s hard. And, historically, an investment in formal was best matched by an investment in a PhD or two to help out. Or perhaps by hiring some specialist consultants to help out. The way we’ve started to shake off some of those shackles is through apps. The companies making formal technology realized that they had to target specific problems and then bury the formal bits below a user interface and flow that were more natural to the problem being solved.

 

Sensing a New Generation

How Wearables Will Revolutionize Prenatal Medicine

by Amelia Dalton

In this week’s Fish Fry we explore a whole new world of wearable technologies with Julian Penders from Bloom Technologies. Julian (co-author of “Wearable Technologies for Healthier Pregnancies”) and I talk about how wearable technologies can help monitor lifestyle behaviors. We’ll be looking at the future of wearable technologies targeted for pregnancy, and discussing how these technologies pose additional challenges. Also this week, I check out Cadence’s new Innovus tool suite and reveal how it could make routing your million gate IC design just a little bit easier.

 

Apple Hints at CPU and OS Independence

New Bitcode Format Could Be the First Step Toward CPU-Neutral Platforms

by Jim Turley

ARM, x86, or Apple? That question may make a lot more sense in a few months.

In amongst all the many things that Apple rolled out at its latest Worldwide Developers’ Conference (WWDC) in San Francisco was an almost-offhand mention of something called Bitcode. The company didn’t provide a lot of detail and, in fact, seemed to curtail some of its planned discussions just days before the event, but, from outward appearances, Bitcode lays the groundwork for a future filled with CPU-neutral Apple devices.

In other words, Apple may be getting ready to swap out ARM for x86, or vice versa.

 

Selling Your Brain

Patent Law is a Slippery Slope for Engineers

by Kevin Morris

Patent Law was created to protect and encourage inventors. The original intent is noble: when you invent something, the patent system is designed to give you a period of exclusivity where you can profit from your work and creativity without fear of someone copying your idea without compensating you.

However, the patent system didn’t contemplate the reality of today’s professional engineering environment, where the majority of engineers are employed in a work-for-hire situation by large corporations, and where those engineers frequently move from one large corporation to another. In that situation, our patent system breaks down badly.

 

IoT Security

Hints of Solutions to Come

by Bryon Moyer

Security is the last unsolved problem of the Internet of Things (IoT). Really; all we have to do is make a security and it will all be good.

Poke around in IoT-Land a bunch, and you could come to that conclusion. Over the last year, I was excited to see the appearance of various whitepapers and presentations on IoT security, hoping to learn what solutions would get us over the security hump. But most just reiterated the fact that security was important and missing and someone should do something about it.

While security isn’t the only barrier to an IoT deployment explosion, it has been holding some folks back. Others have proceeded with less than ideal security since they wanted to do something without waiting for an engraved invitation to a secure IoT.

 

Treasure of the Semiconductor Madre

Seeking EDA Gold (and Answers) with Xerxes Wania

by Amelia Dalton

Bust out the pickaxes and dynamite, we're looking for gold in ‘dem 'der hills. Xerxes Wania (CEO - Sidense) joins Fish Fry this week to dig into the treasure trove of issues found deep in the semiconductor and EDA industries today. Xerxes and I scour the land for faults and break out our trusty gold pans to find the answers... and it ain't pretty my friends. Also this week, I delve into a brand new world of inductance-to-digital converters that will revolutionize position and rotation sensing in our IoT designs.

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