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October 2008
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December 2008

Cool Demo – Low Power Sims with CPF, Incisive and SimVision

My good friends at Cadence have been gently pinging me for awhile trying to convince me to write about some of their more interesting verification-related announcements.  Unfortunately, I’m always in the middle of client work and somehow never get around to putting pen to paper (for example, I missed out on the recent and unfortunately timed announcement about Cadence’s recent IP acquisition).  However, Mickey Rodriguez’s recent blog post and associated video demonstrating how to use CPF with Incisive caught my attention. 

The video is not too long (about 8 minutes) and shows how to create a CPF file describing power characteristics of a simple design module.  It then shows how signal outputs affected by power domains look in the SimVision waveform and schematic viewer.  The text in the video was difficult to read on my 1024x768 display, but hopefully it will look better in full screen mode on a larger display.  Check it out!

OVM/VMM Interoperability: A Closer Look

While I was preparing for my trip to Asia for the Verification Now seminar series, a colleague forwarded me a link to a recent article entitled “OVM vs. VMM: What’s Next?” on the System-Level Design Community over at Chip Design Magazine.  In the article, Ed Sperling writes about the “battle for dominance between the Verification Methodology [Manual] (VMM) and the Open Verification Methodology ([OVM]).”  The main focus of the article is the fact that Synopsys on one side and Cadence/Mentor on the other are each pushing their own verification methodology libraries.  The article also discusses possible modes of interoperability between the OVM and VMM which are currently under review by the VIP TSC. 

Karen Bartleson from Synopsys quickly responded to some inaccuracies in the article on her blog (I agree with her observations) and went on to say that she (and users) would like to see a single “Accellera-sanctioned standard.” 

I’d like to take a moment to comment on some of the observations from Ed and Karen’s articles.  First, a word on the different methods proposed to bridge the gap between the VMM and the OVM (also known within the committee as the “short term” solution).  Ed’s sources mentioned three possible approaches:

  1. Bridge the environment. Create a compiler or other binary compatibility layer to allow the VMM and OVM to work together.
  2. Match the data types. Send results from the VMM and OVM to a common scoreboard, where data-type matching and comparison will occur.
  3. Wrap the code. Wrap components from one methodology library in another methodology library.

Let’s take them one by one. 

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Verification Now 2008 - Yokohama, Japan

JL Presenting in YokohamaNow that I’m back home and mostly over what turned out to be a wicked case of jet lag, I’ve finally had a chance to sit down and organize my thoughts and notes on my trip.  Monday, October 27 was the Verification Now seminar in Yokohama, Japan.  The event was great fun for a number of reasons, not least of which was the pleasure of meeting readers of this blog and several new folks face to face. 

Of course, the day was made just that much more exciting by the fact that the translators (two very nice women who nonetheless reminded me of Patty and Selma from The Simpsons) had only had a day or two to go over my slides and hadn’t availed themselves of the opportunity to view a couple of recordings we made of my presentations in Santa Clara.  I ended up having to spend about two hours walking them through both of the presentations (all the while losing my voice).  I had a couple of comments that the translators weren’t able to keep up with my speedy pace, and one other saying they did just fine, so I’m not sure how things turned out in the end.  Regardless, giving the presentations to a foreign audience was a great experience and ensured I did a much better job in both Taipei and Herzliya. 

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Twittering Away My Trip

I probably should have mentioned this earlier (like, I don't know, a week and a half ago) but if you're curious what I'm doing at any given time while I'm traveling please check out my Twitter feed.  I'm in Herzliya, Israel now.  Just arrived yesterday evening from Taipei.  The seminars in Yokohama and Taipei last week went very well.  I must apologize for speaking too quickly in Japan - I apparently was making it quite difficult for the translators!  I slowed down quite a bit though for my session in Taipei on Friday (there were no translators there) so those attending the Yokohama session may at least take solace in the fact that I was able to practice my timing for subsequent sessions!

We're expecting a good sized crowd for the session in Herzliya tomorrow - I'm looking forward to meeting all of you who plan to attend!