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ARM, DSP makers team on system-on-chip spec

Posted: 28 Apr 2003 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:arm? debugger? microprocessor? dsp? embedded systems conference?

ARM Ltd has announced that it is teaming with DSP vendors to create an integration specification that would make it simpler for designers to debug systems that employ a microprocessor and DSP.

The announcement at the Embedded Systems Conference was expected to have a profound effect on the development of products that use SoC designs. ARM, a provider of 16- and 32-bit RISC processor cores, said it is collaborating with two major DSP companies, LSI Logic Corp. and ParthusCeva, Inc., on the specification. By working with the companies to develop a standard DSP integration specification, ARM engineers said they hope to cut development time and cost for designers of modems, mobile phones, set-top boxes, portable audio players, and other devices that employ DSPs along with CPUs.

"When you're prototyping, this will allow you to do everything in one environment," said Bryn Parry, GM of the IP Products Division for ARM.

Parry said developers typically handle debugging in separate on-screen environments and then jump back and forth between the environments as they make changes.

"Now, when you debug, you'll be able to see how a change on the CPU affects the DSP, and vice versa," Parry said.

Along with the collaboration on DSP and multiprocessor core integration, ARM is also working independently on system-wide, on-chip, multi-core debugging, and trace solutions. The work will unify elements such as bus architecture and real-time traces on SoC components.

ARM said its solution would define how each of the elements within an SoC can interact more efficiently. It would also enable each element to be monitored and optimized through a single source, which is said to be a key to the creation of the final DSP specification.

ARM executives said a final specification will be announced in 2H of 2003.

Charles J. Murray

EE Times

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