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Open Source Hardware Risks

By Ann Steffora-Mutschler, Semiconductor Engineering

Open-source hardware is gaining attention on a variety of fronts, from chiplets and the underlying infrastructure to the ecosystems required to support open-source and hybrid open-source and proprietary designs.

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Raik Brinkmann, president and CEO at OneSpin Solutions, considers open-source hardware to be design cores available for free from repositories or other public sites, most likely in RTL form. “Anyone can download, use, or modify these cores,” he said. “There will be a wide range of quality for open-source cores, and most likely there’s no one to sue if they don’t work. So there are risks to using open-source cores, but there also are established processes and procedures to reduce risk considerably.”


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