I love it when I find out about new companies. It is often difficult for a company to hide too long in this country, but when they are offshore, they can go undetected for quite a long time – especially when their primary customer base is not even in the US. So let’s start with the Australian Semiconductor Technology Company (ASTC Pty Ltd). This is a semiconductor design, software and services company serving the global suppliers and customers of embedded semiconductors. ASTC commenced operations in March 2006 and employs around 100 staff worldwide with headquarters in Adelaide, an engineering center in the Chicago area, an office in Austin, Texas and Japan. So why is that important? Well as so often happens, some great tools emerge from services companies that believe there has to be a better way. And that is what seems to be happening here.
Just the other day, ASTC spun out a new company VWorks that aims to provide new technology and business solutions for electronic system level (ESL) development, modeling, simulation, and virtual prototyping to customers in the industries for aerospace, automotive, transportation, communications, and multimedia embedded electronics and software.
VWorks has a family of products that include VLAB, their primary design platform, Genesis a tool for model creation and OSCAR, a built from the ground up OSCI compliant simulator that they claim can do more and run faster than the reference implementation used by most suppliers of SystemC.
From their company launch documentation, they say “ VWorks products and solutions are based on a foundation of SystemC/TLM industry standards, including IEEE Standard SystemC 1666™-2005, Accellera/OSCI SystemC 2.2 reference implementation, and SystemC TLM 2.0.1, while offering a range of new and powerful value adding capabilities. VWorks is a pioneer in highly portable and interoperable electronic system level technology and solutions. It is dedicated to support an open ecosystem of unencumbered exchange of IP, models and data and unrestricted interoperability between tools. “
I have had some email exchanges with Jay Yantchev the CEO of ASTC. He said that the company was created to meet the needs of customers for better capability and scalability of electronic system level design technology - higher performance, broader application, and better returns. VWorks provides new technology and business alternatives to the state of the art electronic design automation (EDA) industry offerings. Specifically, VWorks seeks to significantly reduce the cost of the enabling electronic system level design technology and tools, reduce the scale and cost of engineering effort required to do electronic system design, and ultimately to significantly improve the ratio between effort or cost of investment in electronic system design and the benefit or return from such investments.
So while VWorks is a new company, the technology and products have been around for a while and in the hands of several of their Japanese, European, and US customers.
So what is different about the business model? Here is their pricing for the SystemC simulator OSCAR
OSCAR distribution access and support are available in terms of 12 months.
Type Register Renew
Individual $1000 $500
Enterprise $5000 $2500
Individual $200 $100
Enterprise $1000 $500
So apart from having to design and verify everything upside down, this may be a very interesting addition to the companies battling it out for ESL tools and flows. For more information check out their website.
Brian Bailey – keeping you covered
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