RE: [SI-LIST] : Features to look for in an SI Tool

Beal, Weston (Weston.Beal@COMPAQ.com)
Tue, 5 Oct 1999 12:16:43 -0500

A SI simulator is like a cake. A top quality cake is very good on the
inside and then is nicely decorated on the outside. A Styrofoam cylinder
covered with icing is not very filling and a moist, luscious chocolate cake
covered with dog crap is little value. The cake is like the simulation
engine and of course the decoration is the user interface.

I would say that the simulation engine is the most important. Here are some
points I would look at:
- Does the simulator support your latest models? Is the company very
committed to support the latest modeling technology in the future? Models
are and will be the most important factor in SI simulation.
- Does the simulator have an adequate internal model for transmission
lines? Ideal lossless lines are generally not good enough any more.
- Can you get accurate results of a system simulation in a reasonable
(defined by each customer) time? Obviously, you wouldn't run a SPICE
simulation on every net in your multi-board server design. My favorite
simulator just takes too long to do crosstalk, so we don't do much of that.
- Is the user interface intuitive enough for those who will use it?
Hyperlynx Linesim is good for beginners while you need a few months to
figure out how to efficiently run Viewlogic XTK.
- I would also try to see the advancement of a tool over the past year
or two. Every tool I've seen has holes in it and I'd like to see who is
filling the holes that fastest.
- Try to guage post-purchase support. Ask the vendor what their
commitment is, but then ask some customers (SI list) what their experience
has been.

There's a lot more to look at but I don't have all day to write. I hope
this will get you thinking about some things that you hadn't thought of
before.

Regards,
Weston Beal

-----Original Message-----
From: Daniel Roganti [mailto:droganti@lucent.com]
Sent: Tuesday, 05 October, 1999 9:30 AM
To: si-list@silab.eng.sun.com
Subject: [SI-LIST] : Features to look for in an SI
Tool

<< File: Card for Daniel Roganti >> Hello,

I'm beginning to evaluate a SI Tool and to arrange a Demo
using our existing project.
Would anyone have some insight into what important features
to look for in an SI Tool.
I'm trying to differentiate between the nice-to-have and
really-need features.
Any info is appreciated.

thanks,
Daniel Roganti


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