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<p>We'll have releases of products [developed under Felix], but to get system-level integration to work you have to have a tight relationship with the user community,” he said. Robison declined to indicate when Felix point tools and services would be made available to the wider design community.</p>

Centric Software Los Gatos, CA www.centricsoftware.com

The board supports VxWorks and OS-9, with the addition of LynxOS and Windows CE support planned for later this year. With a 200-MHz PowerPC, 32 Mbytes of DRAM and 8 Mbytes of flash, the A11 is priced at $2,990 and is available now.

Call (972) 939-2675www.menmicro.comEETInfo No. 640

mta 156 connector

Silicon Valley

In what may be a first for the microprocessor industry, Sun Microsystems Inc. has posted the designs of its Sparc and picoJava architectures on the Internet to attract business from OEMs, designers, and tool vendors.

Sun's move isn't due entirely to its munificence, however. While OEMs are free to incorporate, modify, and prototype chips based on both designs-and can even manufacture limited numbers of the parts for internal use-companies wishing to sell their designs in volume quantities to third parties will need a commercial license requiring per-chip royalty payments.

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What companies drawn to the Internet strategy won't face, however, are licensing fees for the designs themselves, which could amount to millions of dollars in savings compared with fees charged by top-tier competitors such as ARM Ltd., analysts said.

By the end of March, the RTL code to synthesize Sun's picoJava-II Java accelerator will be posted on Sun's Web site. At the end of the summer, the company will post the microSparc design, followed by UltraSparc chip specs at the end of the year. The picoJava core will be slightly revised to incorporate several bug fixes, according to executives.

mta 156 connector

We're hoping not to get more money on a per-unit basis, but to get more units,” said Harlan McGhan, manager of architecture marketing for Sun Microelectronics Inc., Mountain View, Calif.

Sun's move is a modification of the open-source” strategy the company has pursued with its Java language, whose source code is distributed without royalty charges. If a software application is promoted as Java-compatible, it must be tested against Sun standards, McGhan said.

For software, Maker is offering a simulation environment. An assembler with linker and debugger is available now. A compiler is scheduled to arrive in the second half.

A critical part of handling traffic for both packet and ATM is the dedicated PortMaker kernel the company offers for handling a variety of stream transforms, queue admission policies and bandwidth management duties. Currently, PortMaker primarily handles ATM algorithms, but it will be upgraded over the coming months to cover the gamut of channel-assignment and queue algorithms for both IP and ATM.

By using PortMaker as the firmware tool for characterization, OEMs can create single-board designs with common APIs for both ATM and POS traffic. Samples of processors and tools will be available at the start of the second quarter, with projected volume pricing of the MXT4xxx family ranging between $120 and $170 each, depending on speed.

AMCC, meanwhile, is building on its expertise in transceiver, receiver and mux/demux devices to move directly into ATM and POS framing for the first time. The S1203 Explorer can handle single-channel 622-Mbit or four-channel 155-Mbit Sonet pipes, providing termination for both cells and packets as well as automated protection switching for Sonet within the framing device. The company has built reference designs using four S1203 chips to handle a single 2.5-Gbit stream, four 622-Mbit streams or 16 155-Mbit streams.

AMCC designed the Explorer framer to interface directly with the Softcom Microsystems Inc. SCE-64 processor. It has also has designed several reference boards in conjunction with Softcom.