Platform-based design (PBD) is an electronic system-level (ESL) design methodology forged in the inferno of ASIC design complexity: it tackles shrinking design time pressures, the growing complexity of applications, nanometer-era design effects, and heterogeneity between chip and system components. Individually, the challenges are formidable. Combined, they are almost insurmountable: the methods ASIC designers use to address one challenge are often at odds with the methods that solve another. Programmable platforms can utilize PBD and be a welcome new home to refugees fleeing ASIC design complexity.

In this article, we’ll show you how to effectively combine the benefits of FPGAs with lessons learned from ASIC design. You will see how the unique properties of programmable platforms leverage innovative techniques to make PBD a powerful FPGA design methodology. We will demonstrate how programmable platforms and PBD allow designers to build complex systems not just faster, but also of a higher quality than non-programmable solutions using traditional design techniques.

Reprinted with permission from Xcell Journal / First Quarter 2006. Article © Xcell Journal.