Breaking News
Comments
Newest First | Oldest First | Threaded View
betajet
User Rank
CEO
re: DAC Keynote from James Truchard
betajet   6/19/2013 7:29:51 PM
NO RATINGS
Let me ramble a comment here. First, what the spreadsheet did for financial analysis is that it took a format and techniques that had been used for centuries and automated them, so that people could try different inputs and see the results instantly in place of weeks of error-prone calculations. This was a game changer, but not because it involved new ideas -- it just sped up the application of very old ideas. I've been watching CAD/CAE/DA for a long time, and it does a good job of handling details so that you have a good chance at first-pass silicon and PC boards that either work or are at least usable. However, clever design ideas come from clever design engineers who have lots experience and have learned lots of tricks over their careers. I don't see how this is going to be automated any time soon, except in very restricted domains where you don't need to be clever. IMO hardware and software are very different beasts and require very different mind-sets. With hardware, you try to keep things simple and clever so the hardware will be fast and cheap. With software, you have the luxury of cheap complexity, and relatively few opportunities for parallelism that might speed things up. Automatically converting software into fast, parallel hardware sounds attractive, but IMO it's not going to beat a clever designer who really knows the hardware technology to be used. You'll probably end up with bloated FPGAs instead, which should make FPGA vendors happy because those are the chips with big profit margins. At a talk I saw at the recent Design West, one speaker gave an interesting perspective on the VHDL versus Verilog question. He likes people to design FPGAs in VHDL precisely because it doesn't look like software. He finds that Verilog causes people to think FPGAs are like software and come up with poor designs.



Flash Poll
EE Life
Frankenstein's Fix, Teardowns, Sideshows, Design Contests, Reader Content & More
Engineer's Bookshelf
Caleb Kraft

The Martian: A Delightful Exploration of Math, Mars & Feces
Caleb Kraft
6 comments
To say that Andy Weir's The Martian is an exploration of math, Mars, and feces is a slight simplification. I doubt that the author would have any complaints, though.

The Engineering Life - Around the Web
Caleb Kraft

Surprise TOQ Teardown at EELive!
Caleb Kraft
Post a comment
This year, for EELive! I had a little surprise that I was quite eager to share. Qualcomm had given us a TOQ smart watch in order to award someone a prize. We were given complete freedom to ...

Design Contests & Competitions
Caleb Kraft

Join The Balancing Act With April's Caption Contest
Caleb Kraft
57 comments
Sometimes it can feel like you're really performing in the big tent when presenting your hardware. This month's caption contest exemplifies this wonderfully.

Engineering Investigations
Caleb Kraft

Frankenstein's Fix: The Winners Announced!
Caleb Kraft
8 comments
The Frankenstein's Fix contest for the Tektronix Scope has finally officially come to an end. We had an incredibly amusing live chat earlier today to announce the winners. However, we ...

Top Comments of the Week
Like Us on Facebook
EE Times on Twitter
EE Times Twitter Feed

Datasheets.com Parts Search

185 million searchable parts
(please enter a part number or hit search to begin)