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Trends Research Archive

Has Power Trumped Performance?

By Hamilton Carter About a year ago, John Blyler reported on several talks at the Ansys-Apache Design “Dimensions of Electronic Design” seminar. Those talks indicated that power-consumption design considerations were inexorably inching toward becoming the key concern at mobile SoC and IP design houses. It’s all fine and dandy that you can track your stock [...]

Can We “Tock”? Intel’s 4th Generation Core Haswell Targets Embedded, Big Time

Chris A. Ciufo, Editor-in-Chief intel’s 4th generation core (codename Haswell) was introduced in desktop, mobile versions and embedded versions. The architecture’s feature set is a boon to embedded designers. On June 3, 2013 Intel announced the 4th Generation Core processor family, code-named “Haswell.” As this announcement follows on the heels of the previous “Sandy Bridge” [...]

AMD’s Single-Chip Embedded SoC: Upward and to the Right

Chris A. Ciufo, Editor-in-Chief Monolithic AMD embedded G Series SoCs combine x86 multicore, Radeon graphics and a Southbridge. It’s one-stop-shopping, and it’s a flood targeting Intel again. The little arrow-like “a” AMD logo once represented an “upward and to right” growth strategy, back in the 1980s as the company was striving for $1.0B and I [...]

Tizen OS for Smartphones – Intel’s Biggest Bet Yet

Chris A. Ciufo, Senior Editor Figure 1: Intel and the Linux Foundation collaborated on Tizen, an open source HTML5-based platform for smartphones, IVI, and other embedded devices. Samsung hedges Apple, Google bets with Intel’s HTML5-based Tizen Just when you thought the smartphone OS market was down to a choice between iOS and Android, Intel-backed Tizen [...]

RF Energy Harvesters Gain Interest

By John Blyler Imagine pulling energy out of thin air and from significant distances from the source? This is one of the energy harvesting technologies that is being studies by Imec. Radio Frequency (RF) energy harvesters are different from typical induction charging systems like popular “power mats” an electric toothbrushes that require a nearby power [...]

Architectural Changes Ahead

By John Blyler and Staff For the past couple of process nodes chipmakers have been developing power-saving features that have been largely ignored by OEMs. That’s beginning to change. The need to do more and faster processing within the same or smaller power budget is forcing significant architectural changes, more efficient software, and new materials [...]

Anatomy Of An Acquisition

By John Blyler Lattice Semiconductor’s proposed acquisition of FPGA start-up SiliconBlue Technologies for $62 million in cash is the latest signal that the smart-phone market may be showing signs of overcrowding. While researchers are quick to point out the growth rates of smart phones sales versus computers, there also are an unprecedented number of companies [...]

Tesla’s Lost Lab Recalls Promise Of Wireless Power

By Hamilton Carter and John Blyler Legendary physicist and inventor, Nikola Tesla, conducted some of his most shrouded work in a forgotten lab at Wardenclyffe, NY. On November 5, 2011, that lab will come alive as the site of a major event (see Figure 1). Figure 1: QSL card image, created by ham radio cartoonist, [...]

Organic Processors Offer Microwatt Applications

By John Blyler The year was 1971. Intel had just introduced the first commercially available 4-bit microprocessor. Since that time, silicon-based semiconductors have ruled the world of electronics. Moore’s Law has successfully predicted the relentless march to ever high-performing and high-power microprocessors At roughly the same time, work began on semiconductors of a different type—the [...]

Silicon Photonics Links Traditional ICs

By John Blyler The trend in electronics is for ever-faster data transfers between and within System-on-Chip (SoC) devices. Higher speeds typically mean faster clock cycles, which translate into higher power usage and increased heat generation–a real problem for today’s energy sensitive data centers. Optical interconnects offer a promising alternative, especially with advances in silicon phonics [...]