|EDIG of Interest at Portable Design Conference:|
standards and cooperation are critically important to the system-on-a-chip marketplace, particularly but not exclusively in the intellectual property arena. not surprisingly, designcon saw numerous announcements in the standards space.
portable design - a parallel universe?
Parallel to DesignCon, just down the street, the Portable Design Conference, 2001 offered an interested glimpse into the emerging wireless and mobile future. Sponsored by the magazine of the same name (@ pd.pennnet.com ), the conference discussed a number of wireless design issues and protocols that are intertwined with many system-on-a-chip designs. After all, a huge number of SOC wins are in the portable and communications space!
Among vendors of interest at this parallel conference were:
e.Digital Corporation - purveyor of MicroOS™-based technology for portable digital music, voice, and video;
e-SIM - which provides the RapidPlus software development environment;
Sensory, Inc. - whose interactive speech product line includes their RSC line of speech processors.
consortia and protocols
Consortia and the often interrelated protocols were an important force at both DesignCon and the Portable Design conference. At Portable Design, the IrDA (Infrared) Consortium both had a booth and participated in a wonderful tet-a-tet with representatives of other home networking and networking protocols and consortia, in which the consensus was "one size doesn't fit all." Among the consortia represented:
At the system-on-a-chip level, more and more vendors are releasing silicon or IP that works with these protocols. For example, picoTurbo, NewLogic, and Chip Express announced a partnership to provide the picoBOOST™ Bluetooth™ IP core as a turnkey building block in the Chip Express time-to-volume ASIC technology. Bruno Kajiyama, Vice President of Marketing for picoTurbo, stated, "We are delighted to work with NewLogic and Chip Express on the development of this exciting integrated IP core solution for Bluetooth wireless products. We welcome NewLogic as a premier picoTurbo DesignerNet™ IP partner, and Chip Express as a premier DesignerNet ASIC partner. The picoBOOST solution combines the technology strengths of all three companies and is positioned to be successful in thefast-growing wireless marketplace." (Complete information here ).
usb and mentor graphics
Another important standard - universal serial bus (USB) - was present at DesignCon in the form of an important announcement from Mentor Graphics regarding their USB Reference Design for home networking solutions. Targeted initially at the home networking market, the reference design is the first to provide full support for the USB 2.0 Transceiver Macrocell Interface (UTMI) specification, a standard designed to improve interoperability between all USB 2.0 products. The system-level design solution will accelerate high-volume development of USB 2.0 based products, including residential gateways, set-top boxes, removable storage, scanners, printers, video conferencing cameras and modems.(Complete information here ).
Xilinx also announced ESP , their infomercial on emerging standards and protocols. Visitors to the site can learn about Xilinx solutions as well as USB, Home Networking, Bluetooth and other emerging standards.
eembc consolidates scoring method
The Embedded Microprocessor Benchmark Consortium used the show to announce that it will begin publishing certified, consolidated benchmark scores for processor performance in five application areas - networks, telecom, consumer, office equipment, and automative. "By instituting these new consolidated scores, EEMBC is responding to the need of its member companies to provide a more easily comprehended, high-level benchmark score, but one which still allows a meaningful basis for comparison between processors, and which is grounded in application areas," said Markes Levy, EEMBC President. Information on the EEMBC is here .