15 CFI (CAD Framework Initiative Inc.)

(From Randy Kirchhof <rkk@cfi.org>)

CFI quick FAQ guide for release 1.0, v1.1

For those of you who may be unfamiliar with our work, The CAD Framework Initiative Inc. was formed in May 1988. We're located in Austin, TX, although we're a distributed company. We're a not-for-profit consortium formed under the laws of the state of Delaware. Our mission is to provide industry-accepted standards and technology that enable interoperability of electronic design automation (EDA) applications and data for end-users and suppliers world-wide. This includes interoperability between EDA applications as well as the integration of EDA applications into CAD frameworks.

A CAD framework is a software infrastructure which provides a common operating environment for CAD tools. Through a framework, a user should be able to launch and manage tools, create, organize, and manage data, graphically view the entire design process and perform design management tasks such as configuration management, version management, etc. CFI Release 1.0 started shipping in January 1993.


When can users buy CFI compliant tools?


Eleven vendor companies have announced EDA products and frameworks which will be available and compliant with CFI 1.0 standards. CFI has initiated a formal certification program for these (and future products) as of 12/93. CFI expects to begin awarding the first certification brand marks in the first quarter of 1994. We expect to see a rapid expansion of compliant products beginning in the third quarter of 1994.


How can the Standards be obtained? Are there any restrictions?


The 1.0 Standards, copyrighted by CFI, are available to members and non-members priced as a set or individually through CFI Member Services (512) 338-3739. They will also being distributed under license by Cadence, Mentor Graphics, and Viewlogic as part of their product documentation. Versions of the 1.0 Standards are available on diskette in an electronic format as well as bound manuals.


How do the CFI Standards relate to vendor framework programs like Mentor's Open Door, Viewlogic Power Team and Cadence Connection Partners - with so many point tool vendors participating, don't they have this problem solved?


The major EDA vendors have been and continue to be challenged by their customers over multi-vendor integration. These programs were a practical response by opening up their existing interfaces and providing services to assist integration. CFI 1.0, and future releases, will create a functional alternative to a growing subset of those interfaces so that the requirement that point tool vendors create partnership specific versions of their tool will decrease. Actually, the service provided through these programs will likely compliment the CFI certification effort as these supplier's frameworks become fully certified.

Contact: cfi@cfi.org (CFI Member Services, Jean Gallagher) CFI Main number: (512) 338-3739 Fax: (512) 338-3853

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