Author Topic: How to get into the CPU design business?  (Read 2797 times)

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Offline lizTopic starter

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How to get into the CPU design business?
« on: October 01, 2015, 05:26:16 pm »
I'm just out of high school (or the equivalent of high school in my country) and I want to work in the CPU design area. I'm not sure if I should study computer engineering or electronic engineering or something else. I live in Brazil, but I plan moving to Canada after I get my bachelor degree in whatever it takes to work designing silicon chips. I already have some knowledge of programming and electronics, and in 2013 I designed and built a RISC CPU made out of relays, and designed many more CPU's in the past years (most of them being RISC or TTA). Of course high-speed processors are far from relays, and I know they are made using VHDL or some other language, but the key concepts are the same.

Offline poorchava

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Re: How to get into the CPU design business?
« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2015, 05:56:13 pm »
Well, getting into CPU design (or chip design in general) is not easy. There are only a handful of companies that design CPUs as such (Intel, AMD, ARM, MIPS, Freescale, TI and few others), to most other companies license a core from ARM or MIPS. There are of course smaller players, but those are rather niche products.

I'd say the best way would be to get a degree in VLSI design, Microelectronics or something like that. Then you need to be proficient with VHDL and Verilog. I guess those would be good prerequisites for getting hired for a junior position in some design company.

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Offline Xenon Photon

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Re: How to get into the CPU design business?
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2015, 08:54:48 pm »
I heard that a master of electrical engineering from a university like the University of Toronto will lead you to Intel or AMD.

Online IanB

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Re: How to get into the CPU design business?
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2015, 10:11:23 pm »
...a degree in VLSI design...

I think this is much too narrow and specialized for an undergraduate degree. For a bachelors degree it should be in something like electronics engineering or computer engineering. Later on it may be time to specialize in something like VLSI design, in a Master's or PhD program for example.

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