Why is a Physical Design workshop important for education?

Hi Kunal

Traditional pieces of training have taken an orthogonal shift, post-release of open-source EDA tools and SKY130 foundry. This has brought a huge opportunity for semiconductor ed-tech companies like VSD to close a wide gap within many training companies that have shifted their curriculum from theoretical PDK to real PDK. If you are a student, who is reading this email, do not panic if you are not aware of PDK. This is something which we are covering in the workshop.

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13-Year-Old, Nicholas Sharkey, Creates a RISC-V Core

It was also a real testament to Nicholas’s thirst for knowledge and the outside-the-box thinking of his home-schooling parents, Rasa and Mike. Having a 13-year-old of my own, I was particularly impressed by Nicholas’s willingness to put himself out there, asking questions and joining Zoom calls (not to mention his familiarity with Linux). I’ve since learned that Nicholas has been awarded in spelling bees and math competitions and is an expert at solving the Rubik’s Cube. Somehow, I’m not surprised.

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Ever heard of Chip Design Pentagon?

Know what Pentagon is? It is a plane figure which has 5-straight sides and 5-angles. For a perfect pentagon, it needs all its sides and angles to be the same, till the last decimal. Do you know what is the similarity between pentagon and our upcoming workshop “Advanced Physical Design workshop using OpenLANE/SKY130”?  Look above image and you would guess it right. It is a perfect blend of topics where even a fresher can jump-start his/her career in chip design in just 5-days

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150+ students have decided to upskill in VLSI

And that’s where VSD must play an especially important role to bring in latest and greatest VLSI skills to you, atleast in the field of open-source hardware. VSD owes a lot to VLSI community and hence has planned 3 exclusive cloud lab-based VLSI workshops on 3 important topics, with top 3 expert instructors from around globe,  having more than 2 decades of experience – Tim Edwards, Steve Hoover, and Prof. Mohamed Shalan

Open-source EDA tool development with lab exercises using Sky130 pdk’s by Google/Skywater
RISC-V micro-architecture using transaction level – Verilog with lab exercises on Makerchip Platform
SoC and Physical Design using Automated RTL2GDS OpenLANE tool with lab exercises using demo design and Sky130 pdk’s.

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6th mile-stone in field of open-source – FREE VLSI tool installation course

A full-fledged video lectures on step-by-step process to install OpenLANE EDA tool chain and Sky130 PDK open-process on your own laptop, from scratch. There is a dependency on vsdflow, though for fresh users and with Windows or fresh Unix machines. To do something like this, it needs a clear focus on end vision, with very good VLSI fundamentals, which demands hours of efforts every day

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