Serving a Need in the Formal Community

Oski Technology launched the quarterly Decoding Formal Club with the goal of creating an industry-wide, independent platform for all formal enthusiasts to share ideas, challenges and solutions so as to advance formal technology and promote formal sign-off in the industry.

On Jan. 23rd 2014, we had our second meeting in the Computer History Museum. 28 formal enthusiasts (many of them formal experts) gathered from 16 different companies including ACM, Broadcom, Cadence, Chelsio, Cisco, Ericsson, Ikanos, Jasper, MediaTek, Mentor Graphics, Microsoft, NVIDIA, Qualcomm, SMI, Synopsys and a stealth startup. Talks were given by Normando Montecillo from Broadcom on data integrity verification and Vigyan Singhal, Oski CEO, on Abstraction Models.

It was a very successful event as demonstrated by the anonymous survey results. Answers to the question “What are your primary goals for attending the event?” reinforced the original intention of the group’s founders, that is to facilitate knowledge sharing and networking among formal experts.

Learn from Oski on formal knowledge 90%
Network with other formal experts in the industry 81%
Share my formal experience to promote formal adoption. 19%
Visit Computer History Museum and have fun. 0%
See what Oski is up to, I am a big fan. 24%

All attendees responded that the event met their goals, and 81% with a sounding “Yes, definitely!” People enjoyed the both main talk and the guest presentation, agreed that these topics are important, and that slides and content were appropriate and the delivery was clear.

The most insightful and useful comments were suggestions for future events:

• More problems sharing from other companies.
• Constraints, Engine Selection, more abstraction
• Detailed advanced techniques
• Architectural Modeling
• Identify area to abstract and how to do it
• How to prove abstractions are sound
• Customer experience is good to share
• Popular industrial blocks and formal DOs and DONTs for them
• More interesting examples for abstraction modeling
• How do you analyze the cause for proof complexity?
• Verifying abstraction or architectural models are “correct” against the thing that is being abstract.
• Formal Coverage
• Formal Training for RTL designer
• Effective assertive writing
• Higher level methodology
• How to integrate formal into verification planning, especially for engineers unfamiliar with formal

Stay tuned as we make our way through this list of interesting and important topics in future Decoding Formal Club meetings.

We look forward to the day when formal experts are as many in number as simulation experts and formal sign-off for verification is the standard. Thank you to all attendees for your valuable feedback. Until the next time …