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Content posted in March 1999
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Flexible logic speeds SOC gold rush
News & Analysis  
3/30/1999   Post a comment
Embedded programmable logic has become a significant design aspect in the system-on-chip era. Silicon vendors such as Lucent Technologies Inc. are beginning to supply standard, off-the-shelf chips with embedded programmable logic. Dataquest Inc.'s Jordan Selburn has even coined a category for upcoming off-the-shelf chips that incorporate embedded programmable logic: application-specific programmable parts (ASPPs). Venture capitalists have poured more than $35million into Silicon Valley alone to
An option: multiple dice on a substrate
News & Analysis  
3/30/1999   Post a comment
Though systems-on-chip (SOC) herald a new level of component integration, there is a point at which too much complexity negates the cost benefits that the semiconductor industry has traditionally brought to electronic systems. While SOC attempts to integrate different process technologies, an unnecessary level of complexity and cost is added to chip design, manufacturing and test.
Six steps toward successful system-level integration
News & Analysis  
3/30/1999   Post a comment
We have used the following development process to successfully produce SOCs time after time. Those who plan to employ SOCs in their next product will need to use a similarly rigorous process to successfully complete the design.
Hardware/software design flows change
News & Analysis  
3/30/1999   Post a comment
Turning electronics into consumer products creates an insatiable market appetite for additional product features and performance with ever-falling prices. This trend mandates tough design goals and is driving developers to rapidly adopt system-on-chip (SOC) technologies to meet them.
Programmable logic blends 'soft IP'
News & Analysis  
3/30/1999   Post a comment
Until fairly recently, the ASIC and programmable-logic industries have been characterized by continual introductions of ever-larger "blank slate" devices. In other words, vendors placed the burden of system-level design on the shoulders of their customers. However, traditional development tools and methods fall short of the levels of complexity needed for the system-on-chip (SOC) applications targeted for these devices. As a result, designers have been forced to make difficult choices between lo
Single-chip systems leap technology barriers
News & Analysis  
3/30/1999   Post a comment
While advances in semiconductor fabrication technology have always been roughly measured in circuit density, the current stir over system-on-a-chip (SOC) capability marks a significant change in industry metrics. Rather than asking how many devices can be crowded onto a single piece of silicon, semiconductor experts are now turning to the question of how many different circuit types can be merged. The vision-blending a palette of technologies in a single fab run-could potentially boost the usefu
EDA Start-Up Focuses On Design Verification
News & Analysis  
3/30/1999   Post a comment
HDAC, which was incorporated in 1997, will make its first public showing next week at the International HDL Conference & Exhibition in Santa Clara, Calif.
VLSI Gets Biggest Order In History For Chips
News & Analysis  
3/30/1999   Post a comment
VLSI receives largest order for chips in its history from Samsung, which is buying $34M worth of chip sets for digital cell phones, based on GSM standard.
ASE Test To Buy ISE Labs Stock For $98M
News & Analysis  
3/30/1999   Post a comment
The stock purchase will expand ASE Test's operations into a number of front-end steps, including test program development, wafer sorting, and failure analysis.
Pen Interconnect bumped from Nasdaq
News & Analysis  
3/30/1999   Post a comment
Actel, Matsushita develop 0.25-micron antifuse process
News & Analysis  
3/30/1999   Post a comment
Actel Corp. and Matsushita Electronics Corp. said Monday (March 29) that they have co-developed a 0.25-micron antifuse process that is currently being qualified for production and is expected to sample next quarter.
Malaysian foundry to run Sharp technology
News & Analysis  
3/30/1999   Post a comment
Silicon foundry startup 1st Silicon (Malaysia) Sdn. Bhd. today announced that it has received a syndicated loan exceeding $200 million and struck a technology-transfer agreement with Japan's Sharp Corp. to begin wafer processing services by the end of next year.
Oxide breakthrough presages CMOS GaAs circuits
News & Analysis  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
A semiconductor process breakthrough at Lucent Technologies' Bell Laboratories bodes well for the future of gallium-arsenide-based circuits. Using molecular-beam epitaxy deposition, Bell Labs researchers have shown that the rare-earth element gadolinium can form very thin oxide layers on GaAs substrates. Since electrically insulating oxide films have been the critical element in the silicon VLSI revolution, this development suggests that higher-performance GaAs circuits might now attain the same
Static tool speeds functional verification
News & Analysis  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
A new type of verification tool that promises rapid and exhaustive block-level functional checks will be rolled out by startup HDAC Inc. next week at the International HDL Conference in Santa Clara, Calif. The tool, Solidify, is said to be among the first of a new breed of "static functional verification" tools.
Thaad defense system logs ninth failure
News & Analysis  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Nine flight tests, nine failures for the U.S. Army's missile defense system.
Students need technical education, study finds
News & Analysis  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
All U.S. undergraduate students should be required to take courses in science, mathematics, engineering or technology, according to a recent National Research Council report. Many students will eventually make important decisions that will require an understanding of basic scientific concepts that many students now lack, according to the study, which was overseen by the National Academy of Sciences and National Academy of Engineering.
Cadmos analyzes noise in deep-submicron designs
News & Analysis  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Deep-submicron startup Cadmos Design Technology Inc. is slated to release its first offering this week. The Pacific noise-analysis solution targets designs at 0.25 micron and below.
Samsung orders $34M GSM chips from VLSI
News & Analysis  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
VLSI Technology Inc.today said it has received the largest single order for semiconductors in its history from Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., which is buying $34 million worth of chip sets for digital cellular phones, based on the Global System for Mobile (GSM) standard.
Zilog signs Fatbrain.com to distribute technical data
News & Analysis  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Zilog Inc. has arranged for Fatbrain.com Inc., an online bookstore, to distribute technical information on its families of embedded microprocessors.
MediaQ launched display controller with embedded DRAM
News & Analysis  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Plenty of attention has been paid to power-stingy CPUs developed with the consumer electronic appliance market in mind. Now, MediaQ Inc. (Santa Clara, Calif.) is moving the spotlight to other forms of silicon optimized for mininotebooks, handheld computers, Web phones and other Internet appliances.
Proxim moves to Windows CE, Lucent goes Turbo
News & Analysis  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Activity in the wireless-LAN client market is warming up with the weather. Proxim Inc. (Mountain View, Calif.) turned to the Windows CE environment for a low-cost option addition to its RangeLAN 2 family. Lucent Technologies Inc., meanwhile, emphasized speed at the recent CeBit fair in Hannover, Germany, showing off a WaveLAN/IEEE Turbo card in the PC card and ISA formats.
TI licenses NEC RISC core for integrated DSPs
News & Analysis  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Texas Instruments Inc. today announced it was adding NEC Corp.'s V850E RISC core to its lineup of functions that can be integrated onto its programmable digital-signal processing circuits.
Synopsys brings Linux into EDA mainstream
News & Analysis  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
The open-source Linux operating system will receive by far its biggest EDA endorsement next week, when Synopsys Inc. announces that it is porting its Verilog VCS simulator to Red Hat Linux. The popularity of VCS, the number-two Verilog simulator, pushes Linux much deeper into the EDA mainstream than it has ventured before.
Intel preps flash parts for cell phones
News & Analysis  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Intel Corp. is readying the latest version of its boot-block flash with a family of parts aimed at the cellular phone market.
Building a life-your way
News & Analysis  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Give, take and borrow
News & Analysis  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Network equipment performance falls
News & Analysis  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Paranoid policy
News & Analysis  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Synopsys acquires Gambit
News & Analysis  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Synopsys Inc. has completed its purchase of Gambit Automated Design Inc., according to a source at Gambit, who requested anonymity. Synopsys previously held a 12 percent stake in Gambit, an IC tool and service provider.
Sometimes less is better
News & Analysis  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
I-Bus introduces 16-slot backplane and enclosure
Product News  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
I-Bus has introduced a 16-slot backplane and enclosure for 6U Compact-PCI called the Galaxy 16, a modular combo that features support for the H.110 telephony bus and for hot swap.
SBC fueled by lower-power Pentium or K6 for portables
Product News  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Xtech Embedded Computers said it built ruggedness and low-power capability into its 8.5- x 6.1-inch NxL-400 single-board computer to serve portable applications. The SBC offers an on-board hard-disk drive, multiple PCMCIA slots, built-in 256-color Super VGA graphics and Sound Blaster-compatible audio.
Flat-panel systems feature big LCDs
Product News  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
An 18.1-inch-diagonal color liquid-crystal display (LCD) with a 1,280 x 1,024-pixel SXGA format graces Computer Dynamics' new series of flat-panel products, which the company dubs Clarity-18.
Siemens adds PIN transceiver
Product News  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Siemens Microelectronics has begun shipping a 1 x 5-pin, 850-nm fiber-optic 10/100-Mbit/second PIN-preamplifier transceiver that it said complies with 10Base-FL Ethernet, 100Base-SX Fast Ethernet and 4/16-Mbit token-ring.
FIFOs range up to 1-Mbit densities
Product News  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Cypress Semiconductor has launched its x36 Deep Sync family of 36-bit-wide, synchronous FIFO memories in both 3.3 V and 5 V. The 32-member family ranges from 8-kbit to 1-Mbit densities.
Newport expands its SMD capabilities
Product News  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Newport Components has hit the market with two dc/dc converters that extend the capability of surface-mount devices. The first is the NMT triple-output 3-W dc/dc converter with on-board shutdown that targets ISDN and SLIC designs. The other is the NMRi, a 1-W dc/dc for industrial distributed-power systems.
Slim supply fits shape of mobile units
Product News  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Artesyn's SSL40 series of external 40-W supplies measures 4.21 x 1.77 x 0.98 inches for such mobile applications as network adap-ters, xDSL modems, cable modems, flat-panel displays and external storage devices.
Buck-converter vendors boost efficiency
Product News  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Competition grows keener among synchronous-rectifier buck-type converter supplies, which are stepping up with more efficient systems to meet the requirements of lower-voltage, higher-current designs in ever-expanding distributed dc/dc power applications.
Power MOSFETs tout low on-resistance
Product News  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Vishay Siliconix has introduced four new power MOSFETs in "Little Foot" SOT-23 packages: the 30-V n-channel Si2306DS and p-channel Si2307DS; and the 60-V n-channel Si2308DS and p-channel Si2309DS.
MF's synthesizer line is software-programmable
Product News  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
The M2XXX family of frequency synthesizers from MF Electronics Corp. is software-programmble to generate more than 4 million frequencies between 10 MHz and 220 MHz for a broad range of applications, including test-pattern generation and radio-receiver tuning.
PECL oscillators hit 250-MHz frequency
Product News  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Fox Electronics has introduced JITO-2 positive emitter-coupled logic (PECL) oscillators for high-frequency applications where the cycle switching times from positive to negative are extremely short and critical. Shipment of Fox's JITO (Just-In-Time Oscillators) is promised in 10 or fewer working days, with prototypes and test samples shipped within two days.
Coil reduces EMI emissionsc
Product News  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
The B5W common-mode choke coil from Toko America Inc. is a dual-wound filter designed for common-mode noise attenuation in twisted-pair cable interfaces and IEEE 1394 apps.
Coaxial contact system debuts
Product News  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
Hypertronics Corp.'s low-insertion-force coaxial contact system boasts electrical repeatability of more than 25,000 insertion/extraction cycles. These 50-ohm contacts, dubbed the Coaxtac system, are rated at 1.20:1 (max) voltage standing-wave ratio at 3 GHz and 1.40:1 up to 6 GHz and are designed for high-pin-count assemblies as well as for portable computers, test equipment and wireless apps.
Optocouplers target telecom
Product News  
3/29/1999   Post a comment
The SOC600 series of optocouplers from Solid State Electronics is designed for applications such as telecom ring circuitry and switching, current detection, ring and loop detect, industrial testing equipment and medical electronics. Each SOC600 device consists of an input LED optically coupled to an output phototransistor, allowing for high isolation levels while maintaining low-level dc signal-control capability.
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