Si2 Releases New Version of OpenAccess Design Database

Silicon Integration Initiative, an electronic design automation software research and development joint venture, has released Data Model 6, the newest version of OpenAccess, the world’s most widely used standard API and reference database for integrated circuit design.

DM6 is the first major OpenAccess revision since 2014. The OpenAccess database provides EDA software tools with immediate design flow interoperability, saving time and money for semiconductor designers and manufacturers. Innovative DM6 features will improve performance in both new and legacy applications.

Marshall Tiner, Si2 director of Production Standards, said DM6 can help the industry keep pace with design requirements for emerging artificial intelligence and machine learning applications. “As with all OpenAccess releases, DM6 is a production-quality, proven, stable design platform. It’s uniquely positioned to meet the new complexity and performance challenges facing IC designers.”

A key feature of DM6 is oaPartitions, which enables OpenAccess applications to access critical components of enormous designs as easily as opening much smaller designs, saving compute resources and allowing developers to start doing meaningful work faster. “The real power of DM6 comes from the new partitioning capability. By subdividing a complex design, OpenAccess provides simultaneous access to multiple partitions from separate processes. Applications can use oaPartitions to exploit the full compute power available on the user’s platform,” Tiner said.

With properly written applications taking advantage of the new data model, oaPartitions can customize how and what data will be loaded into memory from the database. Multiple simultaneous, unique applications can each be assigned their own partition, opening up a wide range of opportunities to accelerate the design flow on ever-growing, complex designs.

“The industry is looking for enablers for utilizing vast cloud-based hardware with multiple processors. oaPartitions provides just that,” Tiner said.

John Ellis, Si2 president and CEO, underscored the benefits of OpenAccess. “Use of OpenAccess API, source code, and scripting capability accelerates EDA vendor’s time to market, and provides users with tool-to-tool interoperability for optimal design flows. Without OA compatibility, time-consuming translations in and out of a vendor or user internally developed software tools are usually required, wasting some of the productivity gains a tool provides. Any software tool used for real-world, physical design that is not utilizing OA is at a serious disadvantage. The high-performance, partitioning capability of OA DM6 underscores the competitive advantage and power of OpenAccess.”

The OpenAccess Coalition is the governing body that manages the OpenAccess infrastructure. Cadence  Design Systems, Inc. contributed the OpenAccess API to Si2 in 2002 and serves as the co-architect of the Si2 Change Team that manages modifications to the API and data model. Cadence also provides Si2 and its OpenAccess Coalition members with rights to use their production-quality, reference implementation of the latest API and data model. DM6 is now available to all coalition members.

For more information about OpenAccess and Data Model 6, contact Marshall Tiner at mtiner@si2.org.

 

About Si2

Founded in 1988, Si2 is a leading research and development joint venture that provides standard interoperability solutions for integrated circuit design tools. All Si2 activities are carried out under the auspices of the National Cooperative Research and Production Act of 1993, the fundamental law that defines R&D joint ventures and offers them a large measure of protection against federal antitrust laws. Si2’s international membership includes semiconductor foundries, fabless manufacturers and EDA companies.

 

In Memoriam: Eric Leavitt

Si2 and the EDA industry lost a friend and colleague with the recent passing of Eric Leavitt.

Eric was an EDA pioneer, starting at Digital Equipment Corporation in 1978 and later at Cadence Design Systems and Synopsys, Eric left his mark on many EDA products, and was a leader in the development of Si2 OpenAccess.

A Celebration of Life gathering will be held for Eric on Saturday, October 13, at 10 a.m. at Darling & Fischer – Chapel of the Hills in Los Gatos, Ca.

In lieu of flowers, a college fund has been set up for Eric’s son Jeff, at Bank of America, Account # 325116651248 (Yanfang Cao) or via Zelle 4083980824.

Google Joins Si2 Board of Directors

Google Joins Si2 Board of Directors

Election Reflects Growing Influence of Vertical Integration in IC Design

For Immediate Release

AUSTIN, Texas – Roger Carpenter, a Google hardware engineer with 30 years of experience in electronic design automation and chip design, has been elected to the Silicon Integration Initiative board of directors. Si2 is a leading research and development joint venture that provides standard interoperability solutions for integrated circuit design tools.

Before joining Google, Carpenter held executive roles at three EDA firms: Magma Design Automation, Javelin Design Automation and Envis. His design experience includes positions at Wave Computing, Broadcom, Chromatic Research and Xilinx. A holder of more than a dozen patents, Carpenter received a Bachelor’s and Master’s of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

John Ellis, Si2 president and CEO, said that Google’s membership on the Si2 board reflects the increasing impact of vertical integration in the electronics industry. “A recent Si2 industry survey showed that over 80 percent of our end users develop some specialized, internal design tools. This proprietary software meets their unique needs and performance requirements,” Ellis said.

“Directly accessing the Si2 OpenAccess data base by making use of our Application Programming Interface, designers and integrators have greater control over their bottom line by optimizing their design flow and, in turn, shortening product time-to-market. It’s critical that system houses like Google, along with their unique semiconductor design software needs, are now represented on the Si2 board.”   The twelve members of the Si2 board represent leading semiconductor manufacturers and foundries, fabless companies, and EDA software providers.

About Si2

Founded in 1988, Si2 is a leading research and development joint venture that provides standard interoperability solutions for integrated circuit design tools. All Si2 activities are carried out under the auspices of the The National Cooperative Research and Production Act of 1993, the fundamental law that defines R&D joint ventures and offers them a large measure of protection against federal antitrust laws.

Rahul Goyal of Intel Elected Board Chair of Silicon Integration Initiative

AUSTIN, Texas — Rahul Goyal of Intel has been elected to a one-year term as board chair of Silicon Integration Initiative, a leading research and development joint venture that provides standard interoperability solutions for integrated circuit design tools. The election was held during Si2’s board meeting at the recent Design Automation Conference.

A member of the Si2 board since 2003, Goyal is vice president, Technology and Manufacturing Group and director, Research and Development Strategic Enabling for Intel. He has global responsibility for strategic sourcing, supply chain strategy, industry relations, ecosystem development, strategic collaborations, data analytics, and capacity management related to product development across Intel’s broad product portfolio. This includes software, system and semiconductor intellectual property, product development outsourcing services, electronic measurement solutions, Electronic Design Automation software, prototyping and verification products used in all aspects of product design, validation and technology development.

Goyal joined Intel in 1989 and has held various technical and management positions in software engineering and technology development. His previous roles there include engineering director in the Design and Technology Solutions Group, director of the integrated silicon technology roadmap development in the Microprocessor Products Group, and senior engineering manager of mask operations. Goyal holds a bachelor’s degree in electrical and electronics engineering from Birla Institute of Technology and Science in Pilani, India, and a master’s degree in computer engineering from Syracuse University in New York.

About Si2

Founded in 1988, Si2 is a leading research and development joint venture that provides standard interoperability solutions for integrated circuit design tools. All Si2 activities are carried out under the auspices of the The National Cooperative Research and Production Act of 1993, the fundamental law that defines R&D joint ventures and offers them a large measure of protection against federal antitrust laws. The Si2 international membership includes semiconductor foundries, fabless manufacturers, and EDA companies.

Si2 Elects Board Members for 2018-19

Si2 Elects Board Members for 2018-19

For Immediate Release

AUSTIN, Texas–Silicon Integration Initiative (Si2), a global research and development joint venture focused on developing and maintaining design software tool interoperability standards, announced today the election of the 2018-19 board of directors. Board members will be introduced at the Si2 Member Meeting and Reception during the Design Automation Conference (DAC), June 25, 4:00 p.m.-6:00 p.m., Marriott Marquis Hotel, Sierra Room B.

Joining the Si2 Board for the first time is:

  • Jose Corleto, vice president, Engineering, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCAM)

Re-elected board members are:

  • David DeMaria, vice president, Corporate Marketing, Synopsys
  • Keith Green, distinguished member of the technical staff, Analog Technology Development, Texas Instruments
  • Rahul Goyal, vice president, Technology and Manufacturing Group and director, Research and Development Strategic Enabling, Intel Corp.
  • Jong-Bae Lee, vice president,  Design Technology Team, Samsung Electronics
  • Leon Stok, vice president,  Electronic Design Automation Technologies, IBM
  • Humair Mandavia, Chief Strategy Officer, Zuken, Inc.
  • Stanley Krolikoski, fellow, Strategic Alliances, Cadence Design Systems
  • Richard Trihy, Senior Director, Design Enablement, GLOBALFOUNDRIES
  • Mick Tegethoff, director of Product Marketing for Analog/Mixed-Signal/RF IC Verification Solutions, Mentor, a Siemens Business

Details on the Si2 Member Meeting and Reception and other Si2 DAC activities are available at https://si2.org/dac-2018/

Founded in 1988, Si2 is a leading research and development joint venture that provides standard interoperability solutions for integrated circuit design tools. All Si2 activities are carried out under the auspices of the The National Cooperative Research and Production Act of 1993, the fundamental law that defines R&D joint ventures and offers them a large measure of protection against federal antitrust laws. The Si2 international membership includes semiconductor foundries, fabless manufacturers, and EDA companies.

Contact:

Silicon Integration Initiative
Terry Berke
512-917-1358
tberke@si2.org

Si2 to Demonstrate System-Level Unified Power Model and Power Tool at DAC 2018

Si2 to Demonstrate System-Level Unified Power Model and Power Tool at DAC 2018


New Standard and Prototype Tool Estimate and Control IC Power Consumption

AUSTIN, Texas —Silicon Integration Initiative (Si2), an Austin-based integrated circuit research and development joint venture, will demonstrate its Unified Power Model (UPM), a newly developed system-level power modeling standard, and accompanying prototype tool at DAC 2018 in San Francisco. The Si2 standard and tool help designers estimate and control power consumption at the system level, abilities widely identified as critical requirements in meeting product power constraints.

Demonstrations will be held at the Moscone Center, Tuesday, June 26 and Wednesday, June 27, 11:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m., Booth 1338.

UPM focuses on the system level and provides model consistency across different abstractions, from systems down to gates. Multiple data representations—expressions, multi-dimensional tables, and scalars—provide modeling flexibility. Voltage and temperature independent modeling greatly reduce the model generation and support effort, and enable the late binding of voltage and temperature conditions at simulation run-time.

“UPM is a flexible power modeling standard that facilitates interchange of IP power data, while providing several benefits like reduced model generation effort and costs, and enablement for early, accurate system level power estimates,” said Dr. Nagu Dhanwada of IBM, chair of the Si2 UPM project and the IEEE P2416 working group. UPM is the primary source for the emerging IEEE P2416 standard.

Jerry Frenkil, director of Si2 Open Standards, said UPM was developed to address low-power design issues at the system level. “For IP developers, the rich set of power modeling semantics supports IP macro abstraction and provides flexibility for a variety of modeling approaches.  For SoC designers, UPM’s temperature and voltage sensitive models enable thermally aware, system-level power estimation, vastly improving early analysis and quality of results,” Frenkil said.  “For EDA developers, UPM provides standardized compatibility with UPF/IEEE1801 and opportunities for new applications based upon UPM’s unique features.

“UPM has the additional benefit of industry and academic oversight, as the Si2 Low Power Working Group members—ANSYS, Cadence, Entasys, IBM, Intel and North Caroline State University (NCSU)—oversaw the development,” added Frenkil.  “NCSU’s involvement follows Si2’s long standing practice of partnering with Universities and Professors for collaborative R&D”.

The modeling language and prototype tool using that language, were developed in parallel.  Si2 designed and built a prototype system-level power estimator, PowerCalc, which natively uses the UPM IP models.  Additionally, PowerCalc was built from the ground up with support for multi-processing and cloud computing. This parallel development of the modeling standard and a compatible tool was a major factor in refining the model structure and enabling efficient model execution.

Si2 plans to contribute the latest UPM specification to the IEEE P2416 Standards Working Group for industry-wide standardization and distribution.  “Since Si2 is an R&D joint venture, our members can work together collaboratively, with anti-trust protection, to develop advanced technology, including specifications, prototypes, and reference designs.  Our work on UPM provides P2416 with a proven and ready to use model interface,” Frenkil added.

For more information about this project, contact Jerry Frenkil at Jfrenkil@si2.org.  For information about the Low Power Working Group and other OpenStandards programs, visit https://si2.org/openstandards/.

Founded in 1988, Si2 is a leading research and development joint ventures that provides standard interoperability solutions for integrated circuit design tools.  All Si2 activities are carried out under the auspices of the the National Cooperative Research and Production Act of 1993, the fundamental law that defines R&D joint ventures and offers them a large measure of protection against federal antitrust laws. Si2’s international membership includes semiconductor foundries, fabless manufacturers, and EDA companies.

 

Contact

Terry Berke
512-917-1358
tberke@si2.org

 

Take the OpenAccess Voice of Customer Survey

Help us find ways to improve Si2 OpenAccess, the world’s most widely used, open reference database for IC design, with a supporting standard API.  This three-minute survey provide insights members of the OpenAccess Coalition will use to bolster design-tool interoperability in the coming years.

Si2 Open Model Interface Provides Industry-Wide Standard for Advanced SPICE Capabilities

AUSTIN, Texas–The Silicon Integration Initiative Compact Model Coalition has released the Open Model Interface, an Si2 standard, C-language application programming interface that supports SPICE compact model extensions.OMI allows circuit designers to simulate and analyze such important physical effects as self-heating and aging, and perform extended design optimizations. It is based on TMI2, the TSMC Model Interface, which was donated to Si2 by TSMC in 2014. OMI supports four of CMC’s 13 SPICE models:

  • BSIM (Berkeley Short-channel IGFET Model)-BULK, a Bulk MOSFET model that provides excellent accuracy compared to measured data in all regions of operation.
  • BSIM-CMG (Common Multi-Gate), a compact model for the class of common multi-gate FETs. All of today’s important Multi-Gate (MG) transistor behaviors are captured by this model.
  • HiSIM2 (Hiroshima-university STARC IGFET Model), one of the early adopters of the surface potential model compared to the traditional Vt extraction based models
  • BSIM-SOI (Silicon-On-Insulator) a model formulated on top of the BSIM framework which accurately captures the complex physics in silicon-on-insulator devices used in logic and RF applications.

Additional models will continue to be added by the CMC OMI Working Group.

CMC members include semiconductor manufacturers, circuit designers, and simulation tool providers. They pool resources to fund and develop SPICE standard compact models and standard interfaces to promote IC design interoperability. As a publicly available Si2 standard API, OMI can be downloaded at no charge. CMC members have unique access to QA test benches to certify OMI implementation in their software tools.

The public version of OMI, which includes documentation, the API description, and example code is available at https://si2.org/cmc

“OMI allows for modeling of device degradation over time, which is referred to as aging, and provides for statistical modeling of process variations,” said John Ellis, Si2 president. “For the most advanced designs, OMI adds to the SPICE flexibility by encapsulating the modeling-layout-dependent efforts of complex structures. New features on top of the SPICE models can be added, such as safe operating area checks.

Colin Shaw, senior applications engineer at Silvaco and chair of the OMI Working Group, stated, “The effort to create an industry standard involved the contributor, TSMC, along with over 40 individuals from CMC member companies. This new release of OMI expands TMI2’s original capability to support of other key models, and is poised to streamline the designer’s optimization capability, as the ability to modify device parameters is standardized by foundries and simulation tool providers.”

Dr. Peter Lee, director at Micron Memory Japan and CMC chair, said,  “As OMI is adopted by foundries and integrated device manufacturers, its benefits and cost-effectiveness will grow. CMC members include leading developers who have committed to aligning their working group efforts with OMI. Through these efforts to increase industry standardization, members have a clear, competitive advantage with access to code and additional resources.”

About the Compact Model Coalition

Now in its 22nd year, the Si2 Compact Model Coalition provides semiconductor manufacturers, designers, and simulation tool providers a means to pool resources to fund standardization and optimization of standard compact (SPICE) models, and standard interfaces to promote simulation tool interoperability. CMC funds and supports select university and national laboratory compact model developers. The CMC quality assurance program ensures that simulations are accurate and uniform across different vendors. The world’s most advanced semiconductor designs are all designed and simulated using the standards funded by the CMC.

About the Silicon Integration Initiative (Si2)

Si2 is a leading research and development joint venture that provides standard interoperability solutions for IC design tools. Its primary products include OpenAccess, the world’s most widely used, open reference database for IC design, with a supporting standard APA. All Si2 activities are carried out under the auspices of the National Cooperative Research and Production Act of 1993, the fundamental law that defines R&D joint ventures and offers them a large measure of protection against federal antitrust laws.

 

We Need Your Insights on How to Improve the IC Design Ecosystem

Silicon Integration Initiative (Si2) has launched a comprehensive, international survey to identify and address ways to streamline and improve the IC design ecosystem.

Survey results will be announced in a DAC 2018 white paper, whose contents will present an industry consensus on specific ways the industry can manage the rising costs of more complex designs and smaller geometries.

You can access the survey and share your insights here. It will take about 20 minutes to complete.

Si2 extends its thanks to the Electronic System Design Alliance for its support of this survey.

Thanks for sharing your expertise!

Complete the survey today! Amazon gift cards will be sent to the first 50 respondents.

What is Open about Si2 OpenAccess?

Marshall 200sq

 

 

 

 

By Marshall Tiner
Director of Production Standards
Si2

What is open about Si2 OpenAccess?

It seems these days everything is “open,” and the terms get confusing. Here is a short history of a few key areas to help clarify things. The label “open source” is credited to the free software movement of 1998. In February of that year, the Open Source Initiative (OSI) was founded and the Open Source Definition adopted. OSI tried to trademark the term “open source,” in an effort to control its usage.

So, what does open source mean?

The term refers to a licensing methodology whereby the source code is made publicly available. Depending on the license terms, others may then download, modify, and publish their version (fork) back to the community. The Apache Software Foundation’s license has become a standard within the open source world.

Silicon Integration Initiative (Si2) was born out of the 1988 CAD Framework Initiative (CFI), with a goal of enabling design tool interoperability. Cadence developed the OpenAccess API to standardize the design database, which resulted in interoperability between design databases from different tool suppliers. With the contribution of the OpenAccess API, the OpenAccess Coalition was formed within Si2. To the design tool user this meant a huge productivity increase when using tools from different suppliers.

Before the OpenAccess Coalition, designs, measurements, and results were passed back and forth between tools via time-consuming, error-prone, file transfers. OpenAccess in effect “opened” the design database so all coalition members could develop tools that shared the database. This removed the cost of the file transfer and allowed two tools to act upon the same data. While file transfer seems like a small thing, it can represent significant cost-of-engineering time on a large design. In addition, it enables the user to check-fix-check errors one at a time instead of several at a time, reducing long file transfer time. Ultimately it benefitted the entire industry enabling “best of “design flows, which are very common today.

So is OpenAccess open source software?

The answer is no. The difference is who the software is open to. OpenAccess is licensed much like open source software, though not open to the general public. The license requires Si2 membership which helps provide the resources required to keep the standard viable for use. There is a significant resource investment associated with OpenAccess. OpenAccess Coalition members have access to the source code and some of the derivative products (called Extensions) to use and even modify if necessary. Much like the Open Software Foundation works for the general public, Si2 and the OpenAccess Coalition provide a means of collaborative development for design product interaction/interoperability. The really great part is that the members realize a 1/N cost advantage developing the standard together rather than each doing it alone.

Is Si2 OpenAccess “open?”

Yes, OpenAccess is open to the OpenAccess Coalition membership, which consists of many electronic design automation tool development companies, and semiconductor companies, that’s pretty open.

Membership cost is based upon the company revenue to allow an easy entry point into the EDA business. A small company can quickly become compatible with the larger suppliers and “plug right into the design flow”. There is no better way to take a new EDA company into the market. Come join the OpenAccess Coalition and align the future with your company’s needs.