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Introducing Hardware/Software Codesign in an Interdisciplinary Curriculum

Introducing Hardware/Software Codesign in an Interdisciplinary Curriculum

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Introducing Hardware/Software Codesign in an Interdisciplinary Curriculum

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  1. Introducing Hardware/Software Codesign in anInterdisciplinary Curriculum William B. Gardner & Micaela Serra VLSI Design & Test Group Dept. of Computer Science University of Victoria, BC MR&DCAN '98

  2. Computer, June 1998 • “In Pursuit of Hardware-Software Codesign,” pp. 12-14 • (blowup of page goes here) MR&DCAN '98

  3. Outline of Talk • Background for Course • who / why / what • Codesign snapshot • Course syllabus • tools / projects / response • Future directions MR&DCAN '98

  4. Our Research Group • VLSI Design & Test @ Comp. Sci. • Fault Tolerant Systems • Testing: DFT, BIST,Cellular Automata • CAD algorithms: BDDs,FPGA mapping • Multiple Valued Logic Regular course “Topics” courses • Codesign for embedded systems • configware, heterogeneous simulation, interface synthesis MR&DCAN '98

  5. Our Educational Concerns • Are our undergrads ready for a systems world? • Comp. Sci. B.Sc.— “Where’s the chips?” • Digital Logic course (now with FPGA) • Design & Analysis of Real-Time Systems • mobile robots; software for microcontroller • ??? MR&DCAN '98

  6. Integrated Systems Design, July 1998 “The New System-Level Design Language”(SLDL) Requirements Behaviour Structure Constraints Discrete Event Synch. Dataflow VHDL Verilog Declarative Esterel Semantic Domains Others… VSpec Java Notations C/C++ MR&DCAN '98

  7. Our Objectives • Introduce students to world of embedded systems {VLSI / FPGA + µP / DSP} • Introduce our research into teaching • Use “codesign” as the theme • Demystify the technology • “comfort level” “empower” MR&DCAN '98

  8. “Utopian” view Origin in HW synthesis community Snapshotof Codesign MR&DCAN '98

  9. Facilitate design space exploration & rapid evaluation Research areas: Cospecification Partitioning Cosynthesis Cosimulation Software System Integration CosimulationPrototyping Hardware System Design Flow System Description HW/SW Partitioning Cosynthesis Interface MR&DCAN '98

  10. The Course • CSc 485a/556 “VLSI Design, CAD and Hardware/Software Codesign” • 4th year elective, grad-level course • Main texts: • Specification & Design of Embedded Systems,Gajski et al., PTR Prentice Hall, 1994. • Hardware/Software Co-Design,De Micheli & Sami, eds., Kluwer, 1996. MR&DCAN '98

  11. Syllabus • 13 week course Intro to VLSI fab & design, FPGAs, VHDL & CAD tools Algorithms & unified methods,partitioning & cosimulation Overview & methodologies MR&DCAN '98

  12. Codesign Tools • Academic tools: hands-on assignments • Ptolemy (U.C. Berkeley) • build calculator using Synchronous Dataflow • SpecSyn / SpecCharts (U.C. Irvine) • design automotive controller (oil pressure, etc.) MR&DCAN '98

  13. Other Tools • Commercial CAD tools: demos • Mentor SDS, • Synopsys VHDL/FPGA Compilers • Xilinx XACT • CMC Rapid-Prototyping Workshop case study • Magic: hands-on • exposure to CMOS layout MR&DCAN '98

  14. The Response • Enrolment (2 terms, Fall ‘97 & Winter ‘98) • 30 students • 28 CSc, 2 ECE • 23 undergrads, 7 grads • Projects, choice of: 1. Literature survey & presentation 2. Original design project MR&DCAN '98

  15. Survey Projects • Most with impressive web pages: • MEMS • Chip fabrication • Effects of radiation on VLSI MR&DCAN '98

  16. Original Design Projects • Palmtop systems • “Golf Guy” with GPS (SpecSyn) • “Rowing Coach Assistant” (Ptolemy & VHDL) • Checkers game (Ptolemy) • HW/SW tradeoff re FPGA acceleration • graphics card • Java Virtual Machine MR&DCAN '98

  17. Feedback • Enjoyed “from sand to chip” fab technology • Liked interdisciplinary (with CE) & intradisciplinary (within CSc) aspects • Required lots of skills, emphasized breadth • HW related topics good prep for technical jobs in smaller engineering companies • Fun to design whole system, use state-of-the-art tools, see many sides of design process MR&DCAN '98

  18. What’s Next? • Uvic Faculty of Engr., new joint programs • CSc: Software Engineering option (SENG) • ECE: Software Engineering specialization • MechE/CE/CSc: Embedded System specialization • Codesign will be regular program course MR&DCAN '98