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The evidence is overwhelming taking ownership of silicon design is becoming a priority again for many large hardware and software manufacturers. Oracle's acquisition of Sun Microsystems is just one example of this growing trend. The wide availability of powerful IP (processor cores, fast memory, interfaces, specialized media processors, analog blocks, etc.) would seem to make it more difficult for manufacturers to differentiate their offerings. Yet the smart companies are realizing that if they own the silicon design they can differentiate via their own value-added custom logic and software. Underscoring this trend, however, is a big question. How will these "real men" manage the risk and cost of implementing the next generation of complex mixed-signal chips?