We had an absolutely brilliant day at our fourth annual Silicon Valley IP Users Conference, presented by Constellations. My favorite aspect of planning this event each year is that we have total control over it and can put in a great deal of time and effort toward spoiling our audience with a truly unique venue, interesting and useful content, delicious food, and special treats ... wine tasting, for example!
This year's conference was held on Tuesday, 20 October at the historic Testarossa Winery in Los Gatos, California. It was originally founded as a novitiate winery in 1888 and boasts a picturesque setting to complement a delicious array of wine offerings. Testarossa sources grapes from all over the California coast and is best known for chardonnay and pinot noir. Though located just minutes away from IPextreme's headquarters in Campbell, Testarossa feels a world apart from the hustle and bustle of Silicon Valley thanks to its secluded location in the foothills of the Santa Cruz Mountains.
Our center of activity was the Cask Room, a beautiful space that was perfect for our purposes. The walls still clearly bear the marks of the rough frames that were used when the concrete was poured. The room oozes character and seemed to further invigorate a day packed full of interesting IP topics and conversation. I don't think I've ever seem a more involved audience than we had this year. We had to curtail the Q&A time after every single presentation to keep on schedule. It was inspiring to see so many of the brightest minds in semiconductor IP interacting and breaking down today's most pressing issues.
If you weren't able to attend the event, fear not! We've recorded all of the presentations for you to enjoy. You can jump to the full-day playlist of videos by clicking here, or you can simply click a link below to watch a specific video that tickles your fancy.
The morning kicked off with a keynote address on IP Compliance by Eric Stein of PricewaterhouseCoopers. Eric discussed the challenges facing semiconductor companies when it comes to ensuring that they are using IP in accordance with license terms, highlighting some of the most difficult aspects of avoiding sticky noncompliance situations.
We then moved into technical content from some of our Constellations partners:
- SoC Solutions took a slightly different approach to IoT as Jim Bruister discussed the "Intelligence of Things" and how it relates to everything from tire pressure monitors to sharks equipped with laser beams (no, really!).
- IPextreme dug into chip DNA analysis and IP fingerprinting. Warren Savage explained this revolutionary technology and how it will help companies to mitigate many of the risks involved with IP reuse and licensing third party IP.
- Sonics introduced their new ICE-Grain Power Architecture and Randy Smith discussed some of the key capabilities and benefits of this new technology. The key message: if low power is important to you, treat it like it's important to you!
The morning session finished strong with a panel discussion aimed at taking the pulse of the IP industry: "State of the Semiconductor IP Market: Where are we? Where are we going?". Moderated by Ed Sperling of Semiconductor Engineering and staffed with panelists from Apical, ARM, EDAbuzz, and eSilicon, this panel triggered a lively discussion that really got the audience involved.
The discussion moved outdoors as the group broke for lunch in Testarossa's beautiful Wine Bar 107 Courtyard, which was festively decorated for autumn.
After a delicious meal and some networking in the sunlight and fresh air, we headed back to the Cask Room to continue the day's proceedings.
The afternoon session commenced with welcome remarks from our own Warren Savage, who introduced the Core Store, a new paradigm in buying semiconductor IP. Would you like to shop around for IP without being inundated with sales emails and phone calls? How would you feel about listing your company's IP for free? If any of this appeals to you, check out the Core Store today and get started!
Technical content followed from industry partner Silvaco and Constellations member companies Toshiba Information Systems (Japan) Corporation and Certus Semiconductor.
- Brian Bradburn of Silvaco gave an overview of designing IP using Silvaco's suite of EDA tools. Also included in the day's proceedings was a special announcement that IPextreme and Silvaco have formally partnered: IPextreme's full catalog of IP products and IP management solutions is now available through Silvaco's sales channel.
- Toshiba Information Systems (Japan) Corporation showcased a number of their key design wins. Peng Liu demonstrated how his team's engineering prowess and technical expertise can benefit customers and reduce design time by up to 50%.
- Certus Semiconductor encouraged designers to conquer their fears of custom IP as Stephen Fairbanks explained how, oftentimes, going full custom can actually save not only time and money, but a lot of headaches in the long run.
The afternoon wrapped up with a heated battle lively panel discussion on whether IP is a product or a service. Rich Goldman of Silicon Catalyst employed a fresh political debate-style format that really got the audience riled up. Panelists from Open-Silicon, IDT, NGCodec, Lattice Semiconductor, and Certus Semiconductor (Stephen Fairbanks was drafted in on the fly, following his presentation!) weighed in on their positions, and the consensus was ... well, you'll just have to take a look at the video and see which side YOU think came out on top!
With our heads packed full of new ideas, we once again repaired to the Wine Bar 107 courtyard for our afternoon networking reception. This was generously sponsored by EDA Consortium, who had Julie Rogers on site to offer information on EDAC's new push to include IP companies. IPextreme has joined EDAC to support this effort and will be a driving force behind seeing that other IP companies follow suit.
As we chatted, we sampled a flight of five Testarossa wines and positively demolished a delicious cheeseboard! I'll leave you with these photos below to enjoy.
We hope to see you next year at the Silicon Valley IP Users Conference!