IP-XACT 1.4 Supports IP Transactional Modeling, Features TGI

The SPIRIT Consortium(tm), a global non-profit organization focused on establishing multi-faceted IP/tool integration standards that drive sustainable growth in electronic design, has added two key features to its IP-XACT(tm) specification: support for IP using transactional modeling styles and a new tight generator Interface (TGI).

The IP-XACT specification, an XML databook that documents many different aspects of IP modules, enables designers using IP-XACT tools to automatically create many different expressions of a design in a consistent and correlated way. Design and verification engineers will benefit from using this available specification through the automation of IP processing.

IP-XACT specifications document hardware and software views of a design. They document the interface on an IP, including identification of ad-hoc connections, interfaces to standard buses, and custom buses. This allows system design and verification tools processing the IP to automatically recognize the integration requirements. They also document the views of the design, as well as register and memory-map information.

“We recognize IP reuse as the key to creating reliable, proven, repeatable design content on a truly industrial scale,” said Ralph von Vignau, president, The SPIRIT Consortium. “IP-XACT 1.4 significantly widens the range of IP that can be used in an IP-XACT environment and will trigger a whole range of new applications, especially for transactional modeling and advanced verification methodologies. The addition of TGI will enable generator authors to write once and run anywhere for their specialist generator applications. Designers benefit by having a much wider choice of generators available to help them automate aspects of their design creation processes.”

Building on the IP-XACT 1.2 specification, IP-XACT 1.4 extends the IP-XACT data model to enable IP with transactional interfaces to be fully documented. IP with transactional interfaces are widely used for architectural exploration, performance modeling, and verification methodologies.

In keeping with the IP-XACT goals of being language- and design-style neutral, the XML schema supports a wide range of transaction-level modeling (TLM) styles expressible in a range of HDLs, including SystemVerilog and SystemC. IP-XACT 1.4 allows designers to freely mix and process IP with both transactional and traditional RTL wire interfaces in the same designs. Existing IP-XACT users are assured forward compatibility to the 1.4 release, with some simple processing scripts that will automatically migrate existing IP-XACT data into the new data model.

IP-XACT 1.4 also introduces the Tight Generator Interface (TGI) as a key mechanism for maximizing generator portability across all IP-XACT Design Environments. Generators are a key part of the IP-XACT specification used to process the XML data into a wide variety of usable design data. They encapsulate specialist designer knowledge in a way that can be deployed in any IP-XACT design. TGI enables generators to be written using a programming language-neutral API, ensuring compatibility with all IP-XACT Design Environments. This increases the choice of generators available to IP-XACT designers and reduces the cost of developing and maintaining generators across the range of IP-XACT Design Environments.

The SPIRIT Consortium will introduce the IP-XACT 1.4 specification to the general public at an open meeting, being held in conjunction with DATE, on Wednesday, March 12 from 12:30 to 2:30 pm in Room 11 at the International Congress Center in Munich. Members of the press are invited to attend. Exhibitions of the specification in working designs will be demonstrated at both DATE and DAC 2008.

For a more comprehensive overview of the technical features, updates, and benefits of the IP-XACT 1.4 specification, view the Web cast “Multi-vendor Tool and IP Integration Using IP-XACT

About The Consortium
The SPIRIT Consortium is a global organization focused on establishing multi-faceted IP/tool integration standards that drive sustainable growth in electronic design. It is comprised of leading EDA, IP, system integration, and semiconductor companies dedicated to the adoption of a unified set of specifications for configuring, integrating, and verifying IP in advanced SoC design tool sets.

The SPIRIT Consortium and IP-XACT are trademarks of The SPIRIT Consortium organization.