From: emeb on
On Aug 3, 1:40 pm, spop...(a) (Steve Pope) wrote:
> On Aug 3, 6:25 pm, Tim Wescott <t...(a)> wrote:
> > Here's a naive question, from a sometime FPGA user:
> > A long time ago, a friend of mine who does _real_ digital design work
> > was telling me how cool the (then new) Mentor tools were, because you
> > could do a whole bunch of natural-looking combinational Verilog code in
> > a module, then at the very end you could put in a bunch of register
> > delays, and the tools would figure out how to distribute the delays in
> > your combinational code to get a nicely pipelined bit of logic.
> > Has this nifty technology migrated into Xilinx tools?  Or if I need
> > pipelining, do I need to figure it out myself?
> Register retiming.  All the synthesizers do this.

My favorite tool for this was something Synopsys sold years ago called
'Module Compiler'. Apparently they bought another company that
actually made this, but my first exposure was at Synopsys. It used a
'Verilog-like' language to specify the logical & mathematical
operations without any pipelining. The only registers you'd put in
explicitly were those required for state (like accumulators, state
machines, etc). It used the target library capabilities to do all the
pipelining for you, as well as optimizing the logic & math - sort of a
precursor to what became Physical Synthesis. It would spit out a gate-
level netlist for the P/R tools and behavioral Verilog for
verification. Amazing stuff.

Apparently most of Module Compiler was rolled into Design Compiler a
while back. Don't know what became of it beyond that.

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