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The challenges of hardware synthesis from C-like languages

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1 Author(s)
Edwards, S.A. ; Dept. of Comput. Sci., Columbia Univ., New York, NY, USA

Many techniques for synthesizing digital hardware from C-like languages have been proposed, but none have emerged as successful as Verilog or VHDL for register-transfer-level design. Familiarity is the main reason C-like languages have been proposed for hardware synthesis. Synthesize hardware from C, proponents claim, and a C programmer can be turned into a hardware designer. Another common motivation is hardware/software codesign: today's systems usually contain a mix of hardware and software, and it is often unclear initially which portions to implement in hardware. Here, using a single language should simplify the migration task. The paper surveys several C-like hardware synthesis languages and looks at two of the fundamental challenges, concurrency and timing control.

Published in:

Design, Automation and Test in Europe, 2005. Proceedings

Date of Conference:

7-11 March 2005