QuickLogic Open Configurable Computing

Interesting article about QuickLogic transitioning to open source. So it seems the goal with open source is not capturing a greater % of the market, but rather growing the market such that there is so much more opportunity for all.

The Programmable Logic (FPGA/eFPGA) market is multi-billion dollars in size and expected to grow at a moderate pace of >7% per year over the coming five years. Another subset of the semiconductor market is the open source RISC-V IP, software and tools market – predicted to grow at nearly 7X that of the FPGA Market. That begs the question… “Why is an open source standard creating such a large market so quickly?”

For reference, there were approximately 70,000 computer hardware engineers in the USA in 2016, anticipated to grow at 5.4% for the following ten years. On the other hand, there were over 800,000 software engineers in the USA in 2016, anticipated to grow by over 30% in the same period. That means there are more than 10X the number of software engineers than computer hardware engineers. The obvious question becomes, “how can we make hardware (FPGAs) more like software?”

Here is an interview with Brian Faith, the CEO of QuickLogic:

Lots of interesting thoughts – and perhaps a good view into the future of complex components/systems. Notes:

  • how they transitioned their synthesis tools to an open source platform
  • discussion of the EOS S3 platform (MCU + FPGA + sensor processing)
  • SensiML (machine learning platform for the EOS). Appears you can feed it any time series data along with some training data and it will create models for you. They have a community plan where you can try it for free.

The EOS seems like very good technology for dealing with sensor data.

yes growth mindset vs fixed mindset,