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Philips, Spirit exec joins VSI Alliance's board

Posted: 23 Dec 2004 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:spirit consortium? ip metadata? packaging? vsi alliance?

The Virtual Socket Interface Alliance, the intellectual property standards body, has continued it's restructuring by recruiting to its board a Philips Semiconductor's standards guru and Spirit consortium Chairman Ralph Von Vignau. Von Vignau's Spirit Consortium (which loosely stands for "structure for packaging, integrating and reusing IP within tool flows") cranked out an IP metadata standard two years after the consortium was founded. That's fast compared to other standards efforts.

The VSI Alliance, which over the last six months has refocused its once broad and cumbersome charter, hopes that Von Vignau's can-do track record will speed the organization's restructuring.

Von Vignau, who is also director of technology and standards at Philips Technology Group, noted that the Spirit standard, released earlier this month, is not being handed over to the VSI Alliance. Indeed, he added, consortium members voted specifically against releasing the standard to other groups.

Many observers concede that despite its shaky track record on standards development, VSI Alliance has helped define many issues in the IP business and while raising awareness of the need for an IP standards body.

Under new management, the organization has changed, said Mike Kaskowitz, Mentor Ggraphics' IP division general manager and VSI Alliance president.

In the last six months, Kaskowitz has streamlined the VSI Alliance staff and is focusing its charter on creating viable standards with tangible results.

Kaskowitz stressed that the Alliance is now in the black and receives a majority of its funding from larger company sponsors and board members rather than equally dividing funding among large, medium and small companies. It also means there are fewer decision makers, speeding the standards process.

The Alliance has done away with "DWGs," or development working groups, and replaced them "pillars" in three key focus areas: quality in intellectual property (derived from Synopsys Inc.'s OpenMoore standard); IP protection; and IP infrastructure.

In November, for example, the Alliance released the latest version of its IP tagging standard.

As director, Von Vignau said he'll focus on implementing a program-driven approach to standards development. "We will try and make sure the pillars as they stand today have a real goal and focus," he said.

The group also needs to push for wider adoption of its completed standards while investigating why some of its standards have not been embraced by the industry.

- Mike Santarini

EE Times

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