November - 2009 - issue > Spotlight: Semiconductor
AutoESL: Redefining Concurrent Design of Hardware and Software
si Team
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
For more than 10 years, companies-large and small, have been betting that chip design must move from RTL to a higher level of abstraction (software). However, the real opportunity is to allow software designers – with little or no knowledge of hardware — to easily implement their algorithms into hardware. Recently companies like Xilinx have seized on this opportunity. And AutoESL Design Technologies’ foray into the market, as a key enabler, was apt at this point. Being in the market, when the need was felt for the electronic system level design, helped AutoESL to rope in smart investors like Adams Capital and Xilinx. The former saw the opportunity in the realm and the latter was ensured that through AutoESL, its customers will have their hands on the best solution.

AutoESL, founded in 2006, strengthened its position adopting technology from UCLA where exciting research under Professor Jason Cong (Chairman, UCLA CS Dept.) led to a commercially viable solution. “We have some advantages that all the earlier companies failed to recognize,” says Atul Sharan, President and CEO of AutoESL. The unique architecture of AutoESL’s solutions can take any software language as input. It’s the only solution that combines native area, performance and power optimization for the best results in hand-coded RTL implementations. This helps customers grab the best quality of results and reduced time to market.

“Start-ups have become a tough business where you build the company by solving real customer problems, with differentiated technology, on a shoestring and count your pennies at the end of each day,” Sharan says. AutoESL is focused on being cash flow positive with the least amount of money in the shortest amount of time. Their strong R&D team in China has helped to keep the cash flow under control and still create the best products. With customers like Microsoft, Broadcom, Raytheon and Xilinx. AutoESL is poised to break out into the mainstream. Sharan’s past experience as an entrepreneur, venture-capitalist, whereby he had to deal with a wide variety of people and technologies aided him in making the right decisions, in a tough economic environment.
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