Putting the system in electronic system design
Ken Karnofsky, The MathWorks(02/04/2008 9:00 AM EST), EE Times
You've heard it before. Increasingly complex systems and technologies like multicore processors and FPGAs have rendered old design methodologies obsolete. New approaches are needed: system-level abstractions that handle complexity, and tools that automate the costly, time-consuming steps between concept and implementation.
Within the realm of processor-centric system-on-chip design and verification, electronic system-level (ESL) methods aim to address some of the problems. Various approaches and commercial tools have been introduced (and others repackaged) since EDA analyst Gary Smith coined the term ESL several years ago. The tools enable hardware designers to model complex SoC architectures, permitting software developers to start writing code before hardware is available, and in some cases aiding hardware component implementation.
But the narrow scope of most ESL approaches and tools has limited their adoption. A more encompassing methodology, one that steps beyond the SoC, is needed to slash time, cost and errors in complex system development. The new methodology should:
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