Thought Leadership

Portable Stimulus: Are you Ready for a Verification Revolution?

By Matthew Ballance

Depending on the revolution and who you happen to be within it, revolution is a risk to avoid at all costs or an opportunity to embrace. Often it’s difficult to judge until you’re in the middle whether you’re truly in a revolution, and whether it’s a risk or an opportunity for you. We’ve been through a few significant shifts in verification practice (revolutions) over the past couple of decades – the shift to constrained random stimulus and functional coverage, to standard verification methodology (UVM), and to the widespread use of Verification IP. All of these bringing opportunities in terms of boosting productivity and verification quality, and all bringing risks in terms of learning curve and the need to rework existing infrastructure.

One of the newer things in the functional verification space is Portable Stimulus. Like previous new methodologies, the promise is high of what can be achieved with Portable Stimulus. Like previous new methodologies, the risk of a new learning curve and the need to do things in new ways is also present. Will Portable Stimulus turn out to be a significant shift in verification practice, and what will end up being the opportunities and risks? Only time will tell, but now is precisely the right time to form your own view of Portable Stimulus and its relationship to your verification practice.

For those of you in the San Jose, California, area, you have just such a chance to learn more about Portable Stimulus on September 26th. I’ll be presenting a seminar on Portable Stimulus at the Mentor offices in Fremont. I’ll present on the motivations for the new Accellera standard, and its key elements. I’ll walk through examples to illustrate the verification modeling process with PSS, as applied to real examples. I’ll also be presenting various paths to adopting Portable Stimulus and Portable Stimulus technology, including some truly incremental approaches that you can use to make existing UVM regressions 2-3x more efficient than they are today.

You can register for the seminar here. I really hope I get a chance to see you at the seminar on September 26th, and hear your perspective on Portable Stimulus. Are you ready for a verification revolution?

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This article first appeared on the Siemens Digital Industries Software blog at