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DAC: Veni, vidi, steti

Simon Favre

Simon Favre

Posted Aug 11, 2009

Taking liberties with Latin and Caesar’s “Veni, vidi, vici” line, I can say “Veni, vidi, steti.” I came, I saw, I stood. :=) While the main Mentor booth seemed to be quite busy the whole time, I was elsewhere working booth duty at the TSMC OIP pavilion. It was a nice, open space kind of like the vendor area at a TSMC tech forum. The TSMC booth was very busy on Monday, with a lot of people representing that large company known as “Self” (groan), but the rest of the week was very light. People did come through in waves as general sessions ended. I was there to give demos. I talked to a number of people who wanted a 5-minute education on DFM. That’s OK, because we need more people to know about DFM, but 5 minutes is only enough to convince them that either they need to know more, or it’s something they don’t need at this time. I gave maybe 4-5 real demos to seriously interested people all week. I had 6 demo time slots per day, so yes, I stood around most of the time.

I had two good meetings with current DFM customers, one scheduled, one impromptu. Both meetings were of high value to all involved. When traffic is slow, the real value of DAC is being able to meet with people you might not otherwise have in one place and time. That’s getting quality time with quality people.

The one place at DAC I would not like to have been in is the Magma booth. On Monday, as the show opened, there was buzz about the financial community raising “going-concern” doubts. The Magma booth at the TSMC pavilion was empty most of the week. It wasn’t even staffed full-time. The main Magma booth was extremely small, given their past history. Remember the volcano? Those days are long gone. Will Magma survive the downturn? Only time will tell.

In contrast, TSMC’s neighbor at DAC was Apache Design Solutions, which seemed to be doing very well. Their traffic was helped by having a great giveaway (plush bear toy). They seemed to be having a very productive and busy DAC. On the other hand, they are still a private company, and people who have been there a while still haven’t collected anything on their stock options. Who’s going to go public in this climate?

Some people at DAC were wondering if DAC will survive. Some wondered if EDA will survive. One person even projected that EDA will be dead and gone in 5 years. I don’t believe that. I think EDA will surely survive. Just think of all those Calibre licenses! :=) I don’t know about DAC, though. It certainly doesn’t provide as much value as it used to. I happen to like DAC, I’ve worked quite a few. Let’s see what happens next year. It’s probably a safe bet that Anaheim in June will at least be warmer than San Francisco in July.


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About Simon Favre

Simon FavreSimon Favre is the Technical Marketing Engineer for Calibre YieldAnalyzer. Simon has background in Processing, Custom Design, ASIC Design, and EDA. Most recently, Simon was at Ponte Solutions, which was acquired by Mentor Graphics in May 2008. Simon has extensive technical knowledge in DFM. Simon has worked with Foundries, IDMs and Fabless semiconductor companies worldwide to find the real value of DFM and to integrate DFM into their design flows. Visit Simon’s DFM Corner

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