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posted in February 2010
Six reasons why no one wants an Atom-based SoC
Blog  
2/26/2010   18 comments
There are plenty of reasons why no one has stepped up yet to use an Intel Atom core in their SoC, but if Intel really wants to be in this business it should take off eventually.
ST beefs up SPEAr MPU line
Product News  
2/25/2010   Post a comment
STMicroelectronics has added four new devices to its SPEAr microprocessor family, targeting embedded-control applications across market segments from computer peripherals and communication to industrial automation.
Dodging Amdahl's Law with message passing, FPGA-based, parallel processing
Design How-To  
2/24/2010   3 comments
Most design teams agree that the basic plumbing of memory management can be the real bottleneck in heterogeneous processing. Today the only real solution is the microprocessor and co-processors sharing memory on the node, and then interconnecting many nodes with a GigE, Infiniband, or a custom interconnect configuring the nodes in a distributed memory layout.
Kumar Sivarajan named tech visionary; Verismo's internet TV device named best product by ISA
News & Analysis  
2/24/2010   1 comment
ISA names Kumar Sivarajan tech visionary, lists electronic products award winners
Mid-year slump to limit chip market growth, says analyst
News & Analysis  
2/23/2010   Post a comment
A mid-year slump in the western economy is likely to inhibit consumer electronics spending and hold annual semiconductor revenue growth back at 11.2 percent in 2010, according to Robert Castellano of market research company The Information Network (New Tripoli, Pennsylvania).
Fanless Design for Embedded Applications - Part 1: Thermal solution design (analytic)
Design How-To  
2/22/2010   Post a comment
This article provides a reference for designing a fanless heatsink solution for a low-voltage Intel architecture processor.
Junctionless transistor could simplify chip making, say researchers
News & Analysis  
2/22/2010   Post a comment
In a move that could revolutionize nanoelectronics manufacturing and the semiconductor industry, scientists at the Tyndall National Institute (Cork, Ireland) have designed and fabricated what they claim is the world's first junctionless transistor.
SOFTWARE TOOLS - Embedded Workbench for ARM 5.41 achieves 13% performance improvement
Product News  
2/20/2010   Post a comment
The latest release of IAR Systems' Embedded Workbench for ARM is highly optimized for code size and increased execution speed. The company states it performs up to 13 percent better on CoreMark benchmarks for Cortex-M0 compared to the previous version of IAR Embedded Workbench.
Analysts: Five observations on mobile from MWC
News & Analysis  
2/19/2010   Post a comment
Apple and software are in the driver's seat in the mobile market but platform fragmentation may be ahead, according to analysts from Barclay's Capital who shared their observations from the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona this week.
Analyst boosts forecast for PC processor sales
Product News  
2/17/2010   Post a comment
Growth in unit sales of PC processors and PC servers will be stronger than expected this year, according to a report by Wall Street Analyst firm Barclays Capital, however, the firm forecasts declines in the average selling prices of the chips for the next two years.
Intel joins RPX patent defense pool
News & Analysis  
2/16/2010   Post a comment
Intel Corp. has joined the patent aggregation service of RPX Corp., a move the startup claims comes at a time when patent suits are on the rise.
Imagination unfazed by Samsung's Mali move
News & Analysis  
2/16/2010   Post a comment
Graphics core licensor Imagination Technologies Group plc (Kings Langley, England) has stated that it expects to have continued success with Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., despite the latter's uptake of graphics from archrival ARM Holdings plc (Cambridge, England).
Nokia and Intel create open Linux platform called MeeGo for mobile computing
Product News  
2/16/2010   Post a comment
Nokia and Intel have announced the merger of Maemo and Moblin to create MeeGo, a Linux-based software platform designed to work across a range of hardware architectures and devices including mobile computers, netbooks, tablets, mediaphones, connected TVs and in-vehicle infotainment systems.
Six things that surprised us at ISSCC
News & Analysis  
2/16/2010   1 comment
The pervasive focus on power management, the lack of papers on nanotechnology and software and the slow recovery of attendance were among the surprises for EE Times editors at the 2001 ISSCC last week.
Guidelines for complex SoC verification
Design How-To  
2/16/2010   Post a comment
As verification takes up a significant part of the design cycle, planning, managing the project dynamics and a metrics-driven execution will be of much help says the author, a senior ASIC engineer
GlobalFoundries, ARM tip 28-nm process for mobile
News & Analysis  
2/15/2010   Post a comment
GlobalFoundries Inc. (Sunnyvale, Calif.) and ARM Holdings plc (Cambridge, England) have announced some details of 28-nm manufacturing process technologies for wireless products. They also claim to have a mobile SoC "platform" based on the Cortex-A9 processor core.
ESC: Multicore ecosystem still evolving
News & Analysis  
2/12/2010   Post a comment
Still grappling with the challenges associated with moving to multicore architectures, software developers continue to struggle with basic questions, including not only how best to move to multicore but also whether or not it makes sense to do so for a given application.
ISSCC, A4 processor, Micron lead weekly story ranking
Blog  
2/12/2010   Post a comment
Here are the top five online stories for the week beginning Sunday, Feb. 7, as ranked by EE Times readers, up to and including Friday, Feb. 12. The ranking is based on the number of reader "views" or "hits" on a particular article.
NEC to show quad-core Cortex-A9 processor
News & Analysis  
2/12/2010   Post a comment
NEC Electronics Corp. looks set to grab the lead in terms of high performance ARM processors at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona next week with a quad-core Cortex-A9 design. The technology is due to showcased on the booth of ARM Holdings plc (Cambridge, England), the originator of the Cortex-A9 multiprocessing core.
Teardown: Falling costs to make femtocells soar in 2010
Design How-To  
2/12/2010   2 comments
As chip, software and system vendors gather to regale carriers at next week's Mobile World Conference, falling costs and proven viability will give many the courage to declare 2010 the year of the femtocell, and quietly, eagerly, put 2009 behind them.
Berkeley discusses progress in parallel programming
News & Analysis  
2/12/2010   6 comments
Researchers from the University of California at Berkeley gave an update on their work to find new programming models for tomorrow's many-core processors and announced two new research centers—one focused on low-power circuits and another on cloud computing.
UMC sees January sales drop 9% sequentially
News & Analysis  
2/11/2010   Post a comment
United Microelectronics Corp., the world's second largest foundry, had January sales of NT$8,600 million (about $268 million), a decrease of 9.25 percent from the December 2009 sales figure of NT$9,292 million (about $290 million).
What did you see @ ISSCC? Join the Conversation
Blog  
2/11/2010   5 comments
What did you think was surprising or significant at this year's ISSCC? We invite you to chime in whether you were in San Francisco or just browsed stories from the conference online.
Intel, Renesas, Toshiba show mobile media chips
News & Analysis  
2/10/2010   1 comment
Toshiba described Wednesday (Feb 10) a novel mobile media processor it is now sampling using stacked custom DRAM, one of a handful of such devices discussed at the International Solid State Circuits Conference.
ARM to detail power-efficient design technique
News & Analysis  
2/9/2010   Post a comment
Researchers from ARM and the University of Michigan have demonstrated a 52 percent reduction in power on a 65-nm ARM processor running at more than 1 GHz, using a hybrid technique for dynamic detection and correction of timing errors, according to a paper scheduled to be presented at the International Solid State Circuits Conference.
ST-Ericsson likes its odds in race to smarter smartphones
News & Analysis  
2/9/2010   Post a comment
On the eve of Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, wireless chip joint venture ST-Ericsson (Geneva) outlined the main trends in the mobile handset market for 2010 and detailed how the company aligns its business strategy with market opportunities.
ISSCC: IBM back in network processor game
News & Analysis  
2/9/2010   Post a comment
Claiming it sees a new opportunity where server and networking chips converge, IBM Corp. unveiled what it hopes will be the first of a new line of wire-speed processors that essentially puts it back into the network processing business.
IBM's Power7 systems expand lead over Itanium
News & Analysis  
2/8/2010   Post a comment
IBM Corp. rolled out its first systems using its new Power7 processor, widening its lead over competitors and stealing thunder from Intel and Hewlett-Packard who announced a new Itanium processor.
ISSCC keynoter wants 100X power efficiency improvement
News & Analysis  
2/8/2010   Post a comment
Power efficiency is the single biggest challenge facing the mobile handset industry, and collaboration and co-design are needed to enable the industry to deliver a 100X improvement in power efficiency for mobile devices, according to a keynote presentation at the International Solid State Circuits Conference.
ISSCC: Intel has edge over AMD, for now
News & Analysis  
2/8/2010   5 comments
Intel Corp. has a significant, if temporary, edge over archrival Advanced Micro Devices based on news and papers emerging here Monday at the International Solid State Circuits Conference where Intel launched a 32nm six core server processor and described an existing x86/graphics chip.
Intel rolls Tukwilla, nixes fully buffered DIMMs
News & Analysis  
2/8/2010   1 comment
After two years of delays due in part to DDR3 memory, Intel Corp. has launched Tukwilla, its Itanium 9300 server processor, and re-drawn the road map for its only chip not to use an x86 core.
IMS: Electric cars propel IC demand
News & Analysis  
2/8/2010   Post a comment
A new report from IMS Research forecasts that demand for electric vehicles will grow steadily throughout the decade.
Case study: Wireless baseband DSP on Intel architecture
Design How-To  
2/8/2010   Post a comment
Here's how two of the most demanding next-generation baseband processing algorithms - LTE turbo encoder and channel estimation - can be effectively implemented on modern Intel processors (from the Intel Technology Journal).
An analyst's 10 reasons to be cheerful
News & Analysis  
2/8/2010   Post a comment
Bill McClean, analyst with IC Insights Inc. (Scottsdale, Ariz.) has provided ten reasons that support the idea that 2010 could be between a good and a great year for the semiconductor industry.
Europe betting on payout from Intel Labs' gambit
News & Analysis  
2/8/2010   Post a comment
There is no doubt that the formation of Intel Labs Europe early in 2009 was a strategic initiative.
Design team execs left Apple to form startup
News & Analysis  
2/4/2010   1 comment
Amid the excitement over the A4 microprocessor designed in-house at Apple Inc. and used to power the iPad, it has emerged that a number of the internal design team have already left to form a startup.
DRAM leads top ten IC growth sectors for 2010, says analyst
News & Analysis  
2/4/2010   Post a comment
All but four of about 28 IC product categories will grow in 2010 resulting in an overall IC market growth of 15 percent, according to a forecast from market research firm IC Insights Inc. (Scottsdale, Ariz.).
Broadcom acquires Teknovus for $123 million
Product News  
2/3/2010   Post a comment
Broadcom Corp. made it official Wednesday (Feb 3) it is spending $123 million to acquire startup Teknovus Inc. (Petaluma, Calif.) for its Ethernet passive optical networking technology chipsets and software.
ARM, Giesecke & Devrient team to secure phone payments
News & Analysis  
2/3/2010   Post a comment
Processor intellectual property licensor ARM Holdings plc (Cambridge, England) is collaborating with Giesecke & Devrient (Munich, Germany) and the two companies are going to demonstrate the combination of the Mobicore operating system running with ARM TrustZone hardware at the Mobile World Congress, in Barcelona.
Karnataka announces India's first state semiconductor policy
News & Analysis  
2/3/2010   1 comment
The Karnataka semiconductor policy is focusing on chip design start-ups and new embedded software firms, and on setting up ATMP facilities in the state.
ARM lays out roadmap with three more cores
Product News  
2/2/2010   Post a comment
ARM Holdings plans to launch three processor cores during 2010. The cores, codenamed Eagle, Heron and Merlin, all have lead licensing customers and deliveries of intellectual property will start either in 2010 or early in 2011 depending on the core, said ARM CEO Warren East.
Report: India needs a wafer fab, says summit keynoter
News & Analysis  
2/2/2010   Post a comment
The Indian government should help private enterprise invest in a semiconductor wafer fab, according to an EE Herald report that references Madhavan Nair, former chairman of the Indian Space Research Organization.
Case study: Collaboration changes in agile workspaces
Design How-To  
2/1/2010   Post a comment
High-performing collaborative spaces are composed from persistent everyday objects and may include any combination of large-scale wireless displays, sensor-augmented building blocks (walls, floors), USB-enabled components (tables, shelves, carts), and computing devices.
Full-year chip sales fell 9% in 2009, says SIA
News & Analysis  
2/1/2010   1 comment
Global semiconductor sales were $226.3 billion in 2009, a decline of 9 percent from 2008 when sales were $248.6 billion, according to the Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA). The full-year decline was as had been expected in the last month but much less than had been predicted in the first months of 2009.
PC, phone demand strong in 2010, says SIA's Scalise
News & Analysis  
2/1/2010   Post a comment
Units sales of PCs and cellphones will grow in the low-to-mid teens of percent in 2010, providing a "solid platform for chip sales," according to George Scalise, president of the Semiconductor Industry Association.


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Rich Quinnell
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