CoWare and ACE Expand Strategic Alliance to Drive Custom Processor Design

ACE Press Release

Multi-year Agreement Integrates ACE's C-Compiler Technology with CoWare's Processor Design Tool

GSPx 2005, San Jose, California, 24 October 2005

CoWare® Inc., the leading supplier of system-level electronic design automation (EDA) software and services and ACE Associated Compiler Experts bv, the world leader in products and services for professional compiler development, announced a multi-year strategic alliance in which CoWare continues to deliver ACE's C-Compiler technology deeply integrated into the CoWare LISATek processor design tool suite. In addition, CoWare and ACE will closely cooperate on future technologies to address multi-processor system design.

"Establishing close partnerships with providers of leading-edge technologies, while continuing to strengthen our core competencies, are an integral part of CoWare's strategy," said Alan Naumann, CEO of CoWare. "Over the last several years, our processor design customers have confirmed that ACE has the strongest technology for C-Compiler development, which they enjoy as part of our LISATek tool suite."

"CoWare is the leading pioneer in the custom processor design market," said Martijn de Lange, Chairman of the Board, ACE Associated Compiler Experts bv. "We are pleased to continue and expand our successful relationship as it will broaden the impact of our technology as part of a new design paradigm."

Custom Processors: Meeting Power, Performance & Cost Goals
As complex multi-media processing in consumer devices is becoming main stream, many design teams are facing the limitations of their off-the-shelf application processors. Resorting to hardwired implementation is a major risk given competitive pressures for flexibility. The addition of multiple, general purpose processors does not meet power, performance and cost requirements. The CoWare LISATek solution allows the design of custom processors by specifying the optimum instruction set, profiling the application on the automatically-generated processor model and finally generating the synthesizable RTL from the same processor model. However, only the automated generation of the corresponding optimum C-Compiler provides a full custom processor design flow, since writing pure assembly code is not productive. The CoWare tools increase the productivity of processor design teams by a factor of 5-10X, bringing the design time down from years to months.

C-Compiler Design: Expert Knowledge on Designers' Desktop
Compiler design is a complex task with a long learning curve, typically limited to very few experts in semiconductor houses. With the CoSy Express technology embedded into the LISATek tool chain, this expertise is packaged for design teams that can only afford to build up basic compiler knowledge. Using the structured LISATek approach, it is possible to specify the semantics of the processor instructions and to let CoSy Express generate an optimizing compiler. No specific knowledge of the advanced compiler framework or the optimization functions is required to produce the initial validating compiler. Together with the selection of the instruction set and the optimization of the C-application code, the designer of custom processor can use the C-Compiler technology to generate an implementation which fulfills the power, cost and flexibility requirements.

CoSy For Higher Optimization and Advanced Compilation Techniques
When custom processors are used for a wider range of applications or by a wide range of different customers, processor design teams have to deliver the best tailored optimizing compiler available. Using the compiler data base generated by CoWare LISATek, design teams can now apply the full range of the ACE CoSy technology to further optimize the C-Compiler performance, typically resulting in significantly better performance. CoWare and ACE are delivering an open flow from LISATek into CoSy, thus preserving the investment into the initial C-Compiler design.

MPSoC – Multiple Custom Processors
While solving today's design problems, CoWare and ACE have started a multi-year technology cooperation, which allows for efficient implementation of applications on multiple, heterogeneous multi-processor architectures. CoWare will leverage its entire ESL design tool suite with SPW for application design, LISATek for custom processor design and ConvergenSC for platform design, while ACE will utilize the CoSy compiler development framework to deliver high-performance compiler generation solutions for a broad range of processors.

Pricing & Availability
CoWare LISATek product family is available today starting at $220,000 US list price for a one-year subscription. For more information on LISATek and CoWare's other products, visit

About ACE
ACE Associated Compiler Experts bv (a wholly owned subsidiary of ACE Associated Computer Experts, Amsterdam, The Netherlands) is the world leader in compiler development tools. Its open CoSy compiler development system gives compiler developers the ability to achieve a similar leading edge position in the construction of better and faster optimizing compilers for architectures ranging from 4-bit DSPs to 256 bit VLIW processors. CoSy accommodates a wide range of programming languages including C, C++, DSP-C, Embedded C, Fortran and Java. Form more information, see

About CoWare
CoWare is the leading supplier of system-level electronic design automation (EDA) software tools and services. CoWare offers a comprehensive set of electronic system-level (ESL) tools that enable SoC developers to "differentiate by design" through the creation of system-IP including embedded processors, on-chip buses, and DSP algorithms; the architecture of optimized SoC platforms; and hardware/software co-design. The company's solutions are based on open industry standards including SystemC. CoWare's customers are major systems, semiconductor, and IP companies in the market where consumer electronics, computing, and communications converge. CoWare's corporate investors include ARM Ltd. [(LSE:ARM); (Nasdaq:ARMHY)], Cadence Design Systems (NYSE:CDN), ST Microelectronics (NYSE:STM), and Sony Corporation (NYSE:SNE). CoWare is headquartered in San Jose, Calif., and has offices around the world. For more information about CoWare and its products and services, visit



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