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Which field of dVLSI has more demand: RTL or verification?

Let’s quickly go through the terminology here: ASIC and FPGA An ASIC is an "Application Specific IC", a chip specifically designed for a specific purpose. An FPGA is a "Field Programmable Gate Array". In essence, it is an ASIC but extra wiring and logic allows you to reconfigure the FPGA to contain a digital circuit over and over again. Both types of chips n...

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dVLSI career: should I go for front-end or back-end positions in ASIC design?

(*) dVLSI is short for digital VLSI. First, let's assume the old school "career" is still a thing for the coming decade. Second, let's assume you are not defining growth as the vertical rise in a big company. Before you say anything, becoming a manager, director and VP is commendable. Because, shit always runs downhill, it is smart to be on the top of the hi...

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What is the job content of a junior (fresh graduate) digital VLSI design engineer?

The three musketeers were actually four, did you know that? D'Artagnan, Athos, Aramis, and Porthos. Yeah, I googled that. Busted. Soit. Like the three musketeers, HDL code comes in two forms most designers can come up with. There is a third form, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. The FIRST Now, a recently graduated engineer will not touch any RTL design ...

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What are your best ASIC Verification interview questions?

ASIC verification is about verifying the design under test. Hence the experience should not really cover, design, synthesis, STA, DFT, just when it touches verification . You can ask questions related to this but that would be extra experience, a verification engineer verifies. To find out if a verification engineer is junior or senior, you let him or her ta...

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What programming languages does the VLSI industry use?

Programming or not? I don’t like the word programming languages. Even though digital VLSI designers cod in an HDL (verilog, VHDL, systemverilog), it is hardware that they implement, not software. It looks software but in fact it isn’t. There are limitations on the operators and constructs that a synthesis tool can infer from a HDL file. Thus a digital HW des...

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What are the differences and similarities between FPGA, ASIC and a Microcontroller?

What is an ASIC? An ASIC, an application specific IC or chip is targeted towards a use case (or use cases). It means it is specifically designed functionality which can be sold in high volume. An ASIC consists of analog and/or digital functionality connected to the pads of the chip. These pads are connected via bond wires to the pins visible outside a chip ....

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What is the difference between an ASIC designer and an ASIC verification engineer?

What is an ASIC designer? A digital VLSI engineer starts his or her career usually as a verification resource. Verification exposes you to the HDL language. Hardware description languages like VHDL and verilog. The difference in syntax between behavioural code and RTL implementations is important. Because, the designation "RTL" (register transfer level) mean...

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What is VLSI /ASIC DESIGN?

What is VLSI? Very Large Scale Integration = analog and digital design for integrated circuits by combining transistors into analog or digital functionality. There are pure analog chips, pure digital chips and mixed-signal chips. First of all, analog design is mainly manual work and simulation. Digital on the other hand is via a high level description (HDL) ...

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Three reasons to choose a freelancer over an employee

You need to hire a new resource for your project. What would be the important considerations? Cost? Quality? Cost versus quality? Would you hire a freelancer? Or would you hire an employee? Would you choose an employee over a freelancer because that is cheaper? Let's do a comparison and find out. 1) Cost comparison of a new resource We need to compare apples...

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