22nd August 2005

Are ESL and DFM false hopes ?

Refering to Are ESL and DFM false hopes? by Richard Goering in www.eetasia.com -

ESL and DFM are the two buzzwords in the DSM design space. With the spiraling costs involved, such techniques are getting into the mandatory zone. If we say that ESL is too domain and application specific, it’s just following another important trend in the market – that of structured ASICs/platform ASICs. You get master slices for various applications and these are further customized as per actual requirement. Is the industry, having moved from a “single EDA vendor toolset for a complete integrated design flow” to a “unified design flow integrated with various point tools from multiple EDA vendors” headed towards one with “point tools with a user defined interface for point customizations” ?

DFM surely requires a strong close link between the designer and the foundry but are the foundries ready for this ? The skyrocketing costs of setting up new fabs with the DSM processes led the foundries to partner together. Will the lure of acceptable yield and revenues henceforth get a similar result between IDMs and foundries ?

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