Cadence Design Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: CDNS), the global leader in EDA360, laid out a new vision for the semiconductor industry, EDA360. In outlining an application-driven approach to system design and development, Cadence issued a challenge to the semiconductor and electronic design automation (EDA) communities to address the growing “profitability gap” that threatens the vitality of the electronics industry.
According to the EDA360 vision, released this evening during an event at The Tech Museum in San Jose, Calif., systems and semiconductor companies are undergoing a disruptive transformation so profound that even the best-known companies will be impacted. The EDA industry now stands at a crossroads where it must change in order to continue as a successful, independent market. Without this change, EDA will struggle to solve the increasingly complex problems customers are facing now and in the future.
The Need for Change
Despite staggering consumer demand for advanced mobile computing devices and other compelling electronics devices, development practices are choking the innovation today’s technology makes possible. In a traditional disaggregated development approach, hardware is developed first and the operating system (OS) and applications are added later. While the hardware and OS are fully integrated, applications are confined to the underlying hardware/software platforms.
In addition, established electronics companies are increasingly being challenged by game-changing new entrants that focus their innovation and differentiation on applications or “apps.” These new entrants are now requiring semiconductor providers to supply “application-ready” platforms with hardware and software for a given application such as mobile computing. Directly addressing this shift in the ecosystem, EDA360 outlines an application-driven development model where hardware is designed and developed to dynamically meet the needs of the application.
“As founder of an organization that is transforming the economics and technology of an industry so that we can improve opportunity for millions, I am constantly watching what others are doing,” said Nicholas Negroponte, founder and chairman, One Laptop per Child. “Cadence has a vision and model with the potential to transform the economics and performance of the microprocessor industry and, by extension, devices every consumer takes for granted. The EDA360 manifesto outlines a vision that bears watching.”
Action Now: Cadence Introduces Expanded Collaboration, New Products in Support of EDA360
In support of this industry vision, Cadence also announced its initial actions to bring EDA360 to life – an expanded technical collaboration and new product family that will enable the adoption of this approach in the design and development of new, innovative electronic devices. These actions include:
An Ecosystem Approach to System Realization
Because application-driven system design will enable customers to address extremely complex and difficult tasks, no one company can provide all the tools needed to fully integrate a system’s hardware and software elements. A key tenet of the EDA360 vision is the need for an ecosystem that works to the benefit and profit of customers facing the challenges of today and tomorrow’s market imperatives. As an initial step targeted at delivering on the promise of “system realization” in EDA360 terms, Cadence and Wind River today announced a technical collaboration that aims to integrate the Cadence® Incisive® Software Extensions and Wind River’s Simics virtual platform. This joint approach is expected to allow engineers to develop electronic designs on a virtual platform well in advance of hardware availability and improves the productivity of system engineers with planning, management, stimulus, checking and monitoring of unique hardware/software use cases. This level of cooperation is essential for improving system-level schedule predictability while reducing risk, and marks the first of many upcoming collaborative ventures in the Cadence system realization ecosystem.
“The electronics industry needs to adapt if it is to continue the tremendous innovations it has brought over the past 30 years,” said Vincent Rerolle, general manager of the Simics Division and chief strategy officer at Wind River. “A collaborative ecosystem approach, that allows design teams to pick and choose the components best suited for their specific needs, is a necessary requirement in enabling open, standards-based solutions that can address costs and maximize profits. The integration of Cadence’s systems-based offerings with Simics provides a true virtual platform for all aspects of system development.”
Cadence Verification Computing Platform
On Monday, the company announced the industry’s first fully integrated, high-performance verification computing platform, called Palladium® XP, that unifies simulation, acceleration and emulation into a single verification environment. Developed to support next-generation designs, the highly scalable Palladium XP verification computing platform lets design and verification teams bring up their hardware/software environment faster and produce better quality embedded systems in a shorter time.
Cadence Palladium XP supports design configurations up to 2 billion gates, delivering performance up to 4MHz and supporting up to 512 users simultaneously. The platform also provides unique system-level solutions, including low-power analysis and metric-driven verification.
The Palladium XP verification computing platform provides developers a high-fidelity representation of their design so they can quickly and confidently locate and fix bugs, resulting in better quality IP, subsystems, SoCs and systems. Design teams can “hot swap” simulation with acceleration and emulation in a scalable verification environment as needed, which speeds the verification process and enables early access to testing embedded software and evaluating performance implications of different IP and/or system architectures.
“Today, semiconductor companies need to excel at both hardware and software and those that are not able to expand beyond traditional, Moore’s Law-driven innovation will be significantly impacted,” said Lip-Bu Tan, president and chief executive officer, Cadence. “EDA360 is a call to action for the entire industry. Our customers are facing unfamiliar, extremely complex challenges and we must collaborate to deliver the advanced technology and solutions that enable success. In response, Cadence will execute an EDA360 strategy based on deep customer partnerships that solve the hard problems challenging our industry.”
Download: EDA360 vision paper
Cadence enables global electronic design innovation and plays an essential role in the creation of today’s integrated circuits and electronics. Customers use Cadence software and hardware, methodologies, and services to design and verify advanced semiconductors, consumer electronics, networking and telecommunications equipment, and computer systems. The company is headquartered in San Jose, Calif., with sales offices, design centers, and research facilities around the world to serve the global electronics industry.
Cadence, the Cadence logo, Incisive and Palladium are registered trademarks of Cadence Design Systems, Inc., in the USA and other countries.