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    SemiWEEK: IBM’s Telum processor. Aart deGeus on EDA-AI; Stocks plummeted

      Andrea Lati
     Oct 4, 2021

    Semiconductor WEEK: An overview of results and conclusions from recent reports at VLSI.

    Chip Market Research Services
    On the top of the world
    • Order activity for semiconductor equipment edged higher, jumping past 110 degrees
    • Equipment suppliers will be unable to fulfill all the demand from chipmakers this year due to capacity constraints
    • VLSI’s Chip Price Performance continued to trend lower
    Semiconductor Analytics
    Last Week in the Semiconductor Market:
    Semiconductor sales blew past $11B to hit an all-time weekly record. The IC weather cooled another 1?F for the week. Markets were mixed, with Memory & MM Foundry cooler. SoC warmed to Hot. IDM, MtM, and OSAT were hotter. Last week, Auto ICs had the highest W/W growth, followed by Logic, NAND, DRAM, and Analog & Power. Focusing on Analog & Power, MAs continue to run at levels ~35% higher than 2020. VLSI’s current forecast is for it to finish the year up 30%.
    IC Wafer Fab Production continued to ride a capacity ceiling, as wafer price inflation almost hit 40% Y/Y.
    VLSI’s IC Supply/Demand indices jumped Tight last week with OSAT, More Moore, and More than Moore Foundry rising a notch. DRAM, NAND, IDM, Auto IC, and Analog & Power were all stronger. The 3Q21 Supply/Demand NowCast held at Balanced.
    Electronics’ Retail Prices continue to trend down with signs of a bottom.
    Strategy and Tactics: IBM’s Telum processor. Aart deGeus on EDA-AI.

    IBM’s Telum processor: I got a chance to sit down and talk with Kailash Gopalakrishnan about IBM’s new processor for its Z mainframe. Kailash is an up-and-comer… who many may have never heard of due to the east-west coastal AI divide that is a ghost image of the last century’s divide in semiconductors. IBM is a powerhouse in AI, as it has always been a powerhouse in semiconductor research. But this is often in the shadow of west-coast technology giants who dominate west-centric conferences. Who’s in the lead? For a definitive answer, think of it this way: You first heard about AI from IBM when they beat world-champion humans at chess and then Jeopardy. It was only then that you began to hear about west-coast companies trying to up the game to the far more complex Wei-Chi, which has 10360 states versus Chess with 10123. But IBM had already moved on to solving real-world problems with Watson… Most NNP core are tacked on to APUs for speech-recognition inferencing in smart phones… IBM’s Telum processor is different in that it serves a market where faster is more profitable… Telum’s NNP core is also not tacked on as an afterthought. It is directly wired into core memory. So it is not slowed down by wait states on the bus. In a typical processor, these are like trying to get across Manhattan to the airport at rush hour in the pre-COVID days. Telum’s NNP is like having a helicopter whisk you off the building and drop you off at the private jet-port where your plane awaits… The most interesting thing to learn beyond this example, is that profiting from AI is very workload specific as well as business-model specific…

    Aart deGeus Synopsys @ the AI Hardware Summit 2021: … He started off shifting the topic from AI to “smarts”, which allowed him to start with the impact of RI, or Real Intelligence, that spans back to the invention of mobile fire some 420K years ago. Obviously... And it had to be Smart Fire, because humans were using it for productive means – such as making a meal, eventually leading to potato chips. Of course he did not say all of this. What he did do was inspire the visions in my mind. From that, he brought in “FUSION!” … Not as Synopsys’s great product offering. But instead, as a fundamental platform for the commercial success of all innovation. He pointed out that … it was the fusion of ink, paper, the alphabet and movable metal type that made it possible for Johannes Gutenberg to change the world with his printing press. So, you have Smarts and Fusion and then, some 500 years later you get the digital age with computer chips. With that, Aart moved into three of the most important concepts of the digital age… What Aart sees in this is a fundamental shift from classic-Moore to what he calls SysMoore… Synopsys has been openly using Machine Learning tools several years now... What Aart is so proud of … Then he showed some amazing results with AI-enabled design that were ssignificantly better than what an engineer could do alone. The results have improved over time as well. As early as March of 2020, they were able to show a DSO.ai versus manual QOR of 9-13% less total power and 30% lower leakage, TTR of 2-5X faster convergence, and a COR of a single engineer versus a team of experts.

    Now one might think that’s bad news for design engineers. But…

    Chip History Center
    More from SEMI's Great Moments in Semiconductor History
    SEMICON Conceived: 2020 marked the 50th Anniversary of SEMI. It all started with the conception of the SEMICON trade show in 1970, a milestone that marks the emergence of the semiconductor equipment industry.
    Making Silicon Commercially Manufacturable: Without silicon, there wouldn’t be chips. Being able to make sellable wafers starts with the first crystal pulling technology developed in the 1950s and 1960s by Dr. Henry W. Gutsche and Robert Lorenzini.
    Semiconductor Stocks
    VLSI's Semiconductor Stock Indices plummeted this week while the market fell at a slower pace.
    • Semiconductors -3.8%
    • Equipment -8.2%
    • Electronic Materials -4.8%
    • EDA -6.2%

    VLSI’s Semiconductor Stock Index sunk this week, IBM was the biggest winner as investors are optimistic about the Analyst Meeting on Monday. SMIC and JCET also beat the market this week.
    IDM -4.3%
    Foundry & OSAT -5.1%
    Fabless & Fablite -3.5%
    VLSI’s Semiconductor Equipment Stock Index plummeted, Veeco Instruments came out on top and was the only bright spot this week.

    WFE -7.4%
    Test -8.6%
    Assembly -9.3%

    VLSI’s EDA Stock plunged this week.
    VLSI’s Electronics Materials Stock Index sunk this week, despite gains from DuPont de Nemours and BASF.
    Hottest Stocks: IBM, DuPont de Nemours, BASF, SMIC, JCET, and Veeco Instruments.

    Views: 356
    Domain: Electronics
    Category: Semiconductors

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