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Report on CDNLive! India 2011: Provocative Keynotes, Detailed Papers, and Robots!

Comments(0)Filed under: Functional Verification, Low Power, Formal Analysis, metric driven verification (MDV), CDNLive, verification strategy, SVA, Incisive, ABV, MDV, formal, IFV, assertions, formal verification, assertion-based verification, Lego, Manu Chopra, Suman Ray, Apurva Kalia, robot, Rubik's Cube, Joe Hupcey III, Lokesh Pundreeka

Recently I had the honor of presenting the functional verification roadmap at CDNLive! India in Bangalore.  With the high quality of content and networking, it was easy to see why attendance has increased year-over-year; and why CDNLive India has become the premier conference on the region's engineering community calendar.  The following video montage should give you a flavor of the event (if video does not appear, click here).

Plus, here are some additional (functional verification-centric) highlights:

* Functional verification roadmap: I was excited that our roadmap was well received, drawing questions around low power, UVM, class debug, and assertion-based verification (ABV).  Note to attendees: for those of you that requested we smooth out the process of upgrading new versions, be advised that I have communicated your feedback directly to my colleagues in Product Management and R&D leadership in Chelmsford, Noida, and San Jose.

* Formal verification interest: While the Functional Verification track covered topics spanning UVM, metric-driven verification (MDV), low power, and analog-mixed signal verification, the popularity of formal and assertion-based verification paper -- 4 out of 8 papers in the track -- clearly signals formal and assertion-based verification (ABV) is breaking out of niche, expert-only usage and into mainstream design and verification flows.  Colleague Lokesh Pundreeka summarizes the formal analysis papers in this recent blog post:

In general, all of the papers were excellent, and I urge you to download and review all them:

* Our Rubik's Cube solving robot:
Speaking of formal verification, we couldn't resist the opportunity to introduce formal/ABV to the general assembly via a booth hosting our own Rubik's Cube robot.  Leveraging a mechanical design by Lego Mindstorms wizard Hans Andersson, colleagues Apurva Kalia, Suman Ray, and Manu Chopra setup the brain of the robot to be a single SVA assertion that is solved in a few seconds by Incisive Formal Verifier (IFV).  (The core program is a single SVA assertion (in a nutshell, "never (solved cube)"), which IFV solves and then produces a counter example which turns out to be the optimal solution to the cube.  A script translates the counter-example signals into a set of actuator commands for the robot to execute.)  As you can see in the summary video above, the demo itself was a hit and enabled us to demystify formal and ABV for many attendees in a fun way.

* Solid keynotes: Last but not least, the keynotes by our own Charlie Huang and Dr. Srini Rajam, chairman and CEO of Ittiam Systems were really thought provoking.  In particular, in his talk "Designing Systems to Thrive in Disruptive Trends," I really liked how Dr. Rajam smoothly made his point via a quasi-Socratic method of delivery.  Specifically, he invited the audience to consider a hypothetical conversation between a design engineer and end-customer of a consumer electronic device to make the point that to successfully manage "convergence" of capabilities you need to support successive layers of abstraction.  His follow-on anecdote centered on thinking and designing "big" first, then scaling down later, nicely reinforced his main thesis.

Until next year, happy bug hunting!

Joe Hupcey III
On Twitter: @jhupcey --  http://twitter.com/jhupcey

Reference Links:
All CDNLive India 2011 papers have now been posted online.  I strongly urge you to download and review them!

Report: Formal Analysis Papers at CDNLive India 2011

Cadence Announces Winners of CDNLive! India 2011 Best Paper Awards and Cadence India Design Contest

Video Easter Egg: Incisive Formal Verifier and SVA driving a Rubik's Cube robot



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