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Chips and ChangeHow Crisis Reshapes the Semiconductor Industry$
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Clair Brown and Greg Linden

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780262013468

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262013468.001.0001

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Rising Cost of Design

Rising Cost of Design

(p.61) Crisis 3 Rising Cost of Design
Chips and Change

Clair Brown

Greg Linden

The MIT Press

This chapter assesses how design has affected the rising cost of fabrication within the chip industry. It explores the contests undergone and faced by the industry, and then discusses two incremental responses taken to confront these challenges, namely: Design reuse and system-level design. Chip design is classified into four stages, each of which determines the behavior, signaling processes within the chip, and how to manifest these abstract aspects into their physical form in the chip. One response to the challenges of design is the system-level design approach. Here, Electronic System-Level tools are presented as a language that provides a much-needed productivity boost which further enhances the quality of design in chips. In conclusion, it is argued that the growing complexity in the design of low-power, system-level chips directly affects the rise in cost, which in turn affects consumer behavior.

Keywords:   cost of fabrication, chip industry, design reuse, system-level design, Electronic System-Level, system-level chips

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