Does IC design have a future "in the clouds?" Yes, according to panelists at last week's Design Automation Conference - but selectively, over a period of time. As attractive as cloud computing is, there are still technology challenges and tradeoffs, and the EDA licensing model for cloud computing has yet to be resolved.
The panel followed a keynote address in which Bernie Meyerson, vice president of innovation at IBM, predicted that cloud computing will become a "dominant" technology within the next 5 to 10 years. He showed how IBM is using a private cloud for its chip design work. There was enthusiasm in the panel, too, but panelists also gave full consideration to cloud computing challenges and limitations. The result was a very balanced, informative and thought-provoking two-hour panel discussion.
The panel was organized by Andreas Kuehlmann, director of Cadence Research Labs, and moderated by Raul Camposano, consultant and the recent CEO of Xoomsys, a SPICE simulation startup that used cloud computing. Panelists included Rean Griffith, U.C. Berkeley; Deepak Singh, manager of business development for Amazon Web Services; Paul Leventis, director of design automation at Altera; James Colgan, CEO of Xuropa; Samuel George, services group director at Cadence; and John Chilton, director of marketing at Synopsys.
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