The field programmable analog array (FPAA) when it was first offered to the market about 15 years ago did not seem to capture the imagination the way the field-programmable gate array (FPGA) had done before it.
That said, Anadigm Inc. (Mesa, Arizona), has stuck to its FPAA guns. So what is it that has enabled Silego Inc. (Santa Clara, Calif.) to ship more than 1 billion units of its configurable mixed-signal ICs (CMICs) in the last two years. The answer would seem to be: by taking account of application knowledge and specific functionality (see Silego scaling cost-effective agility in mixed-signal).
With integrated devices, and particularly an array of analog and mixed-signal functions, there is often a quandary over what resources to include and what to leave out. In addition, in the analog case, when these resources are configured performance can vary depending on how the resources are hooked up. This pushes back on the design software and often requires an iterative approach to prototyping the FPAA/CMIC.
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