editor's blog
Subscribe Now

Fast and Accurate?

It’s a song as old as time: if the tool takes too long to run, then run a less accurate version early on, and just use the accurate version at the end.

In other words, speed comes at the expense of accuracy.

So I have to say that I was a bit confused and suspicious when Atrenta claimed that their new Fast Lint didn’t sacrifice any accuracy. A conversation with their Mike Gianfagna cleared the picture up a bit.

You see, Atrenta says that they live and breathe by the accuracy of Spyglass. They say that their customers refer to designs being “Spyglass clean.” With that kind of equity in the brand, accuracy is probably the last thing they want to trade off. And you could practically hear them scrambling to explain when I suggested that they must be giving up accuracy.

So here’s the deal. They have their normal version of Spyglass that actually does synthesis under the hood in order to find things that the customer’s synthesis tool may not like. They refer to this as structural linting. Of course, synthesis takes time.

Then they released Advanced Lint, which adds formal proofs to the collection of things to be checked. This doesn’t increase the accuracy of things they were checking before; it adds a whole new list of things to check for. But formal analysis takes even more time.

And they started getting feedback that designers really couldn’t check their designs as often as they’d like because it just took too long.

So what they found was that they could take the 5000 or so rules that they have and structure them. There’s a first category that can be run quickly because they don’t need any synthesis. They grouped these together into Fast Lint. Then there’s the structural lint portion that does synthesis but not formal; and then there’s Advanced Lint that does the whole shebang.

Of course, they then adjusted their interface to reflect this new structure.

So Fast Lint is intended to be run each time the design is checked in. In fact, you can script things so that it’s automatically done at check-in, and check-in can be rejected if it fails. Structural Lint can be performed on a less frequent basis to give more of a thorough check. And Advanced Lint can be done, if at no other time, for sign-off. But probably before then: if you’re ready for sign-off, it better be clean.

So none of the tests lose accuracy; it’s just a matter of which tests you run when.

You can find more in their release

Leave a Reply

featured blogs
Sep 30, 2022
When I wrote my book 'Bebop to the Boolean Boogie,' it was certainly not my intention to lead 6-year-old boys astray....
Sep 30, 2022
Wow, September has flown by. It's already the last Friday of the month, the last day of the month in fact, and so time for a monthly update. Kaufman Award The 2022 Kaufman Award honors Giovanni (Nanni) De Micheli of École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne...
Sep 29, 2022
We explain how silicon photonics uses CMOS manufacturing to create photonic integrated circuits (PICs), solid state LiDAR sensors, integrated lasers, and more. The post What You Need to Know About Silicon Photonics appeared first on From Silicon To Software....

featured video

PCIe Gen5 x16 Running on the Achronix VectorPath Accelerator Card

Sponsored by Achronix

In this demo, Achronix engineers show the VectorPath Accelerator Card successfully linking up to a PCIe Gen5 x16 host and write data to and read data from GDDR6 memory. The VectorPath accelerator card featuring the Speedster7t FPGA is one of the first FPGAs that can natively support this interface within its PCIe subsystem. Speedster7t FPGAs offer a revolutionary new architecture that Achronix developed to address the highest performance data acceleration challenges.

Click here for more information about the VectorPath Accelerator Card

featured paper

Algorithm Verification with FPGAs and ASICs

Sponsored by MathWorks

Developing new FPGA and ASIC designs involves implementing new algorithms, which presents challenges for verification for algorithm developers, hardware designers, and verification engineers. This eBook explores different aspects of hardware design verification and how you can use MATLAB and Simulink to reduce development effort and improve the quality of end products.

Click here to read more

featured chalk talk

Sensor Technologies Here to Stay: Post-pandemic

Sponsored by Infineon

Today sensor technology has become integral to our everyday lives. And in the future, sensor technology will mean even more than it does today. In this episode of Chalk Talk, Amelia Dalton chats with David Jones from Infineon about the future of sensor technologies and how they are going to impact our lives in the post-pandemic world. They investigate how miniaturization, built-in antennas in-package and the evolution of radar technology have helped usher in a whole new era of sensing technologies and how all of this and more will help us live healthier and happier lives.

Click here for more information about Infineon's sensor technology portfolio