Design Automation for Embedded Systems

, Volume 9, Issue 3, pp 193–210 | Cite as

New Alternatives to the Estimation Problem in Hardware-Software Codesign of Complex Embedded Systems: The H.261 Video Co-dec Case Study

  • Juan Antonio Maestro
  • Daniel Mozos
  • Raquel Dormido
  • Pedro Reviriego


As Codesign problems become larger and more realistic, the required time to estimate their solutions turns into an important bottleneck. This paper presents a new approach to improve the traditional estimation techniques, in order to avoid this drawback. The presented method has been successfully tested on a large experimental benchmark, attaining quality levels close to those provided by the Synopsys Behavioral Compiler. Finally, a case study based on the standard H.261 video co-dec is described, proving the convenience of the technique on real-life situations. The obtained results show a significant improvement in the process time, while keeping the good precision and fidelity levels that the traditional estimation models usually offer.


estimation partitioning macroscopic parallelism sharing 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Agarwal, R.P., and P.J.Y. Wong. Error Inequalities in Polynomial Interpolation and Their Applications. Kluwer Academic, 1993.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Bollobas, B. Modern Graph Theory. Springer-Verlag, 1998.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Chatha, K.S., and R. Vemuri. An Iterative Algorithm for Hardware-Software Partitioning, Hardware Design Space Exploration and Scheduling. Journal of Design Automation for Embedded Systems, vol. 5, no. 3/4, September 2000.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Cuatto, T. A Case Study in Embedded Systems Design: An Engine Control Unit. Journal of Design Automation for Embedded Systems, vol. 6, Issue 1, September 2000.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    De Micheli, G., R. Ernst, and W. Wolf. Readings in Hardware/Software Co-design. Morgan Kaufmann, June 2001.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Ernst, R. Codesign of Embedded Systems: Status and Trends. IEEE Design & Test of Computers, April–June 1998.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Fiduccia, C. and R. Mattheyses. A Linear-Time Heuristic for Improving Network Partitions. Design Automation Conference, 1982.Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Gajski, D., F. Vahid, and S. Narayan, A System-Design Methodology: Executable-Specification Refinement. European Design Automation Conference, 1994.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Gajski, D., F. Vahid, S. Narayan, and J. Gong. Specification and Design of Embedded Systems. Published by Prentice-Hall, 1994.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Giusto, P., G. Martin, and E. Harcourt. Reliable Estimation of Execution Time of Embedded Software. Design, Automation and Test in Europe Conference, 2001.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Herrmann, D., J. Henkel, and R. Ernst. An Approach to the Adaptation of Estimated Cost Parameters in the COSYMA System. Third International Workshop on Hardware/Software Codesign, September 1994.Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    International Communication Union. Video Codec for Audiovisual Services at px64 Kbits. ITU-T Recommendation H.261. Helsinki 1993.Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Ismail, T.-B. and A. Jerraya. Synthesis Steps and Design Models for Codesign. Computer Magazine, February 1995.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Kalavade, A. and E. Lee. The Extended Partitioning Problem: Hardware/Software Mapping, Scheduling, and Implementation-Bin Selection. Journal of Design Automation for Embedded Systems, vol. 2, Issue 2, March 1997.Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Knapp, D. Behavioral Synthesis. Digital System Design Using the Synopsys Behavioral Compiler. Prentice-Hall, 1996.Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Maestro, J.A., D. Mozos, and R. Hermida. The Heterogeneous Structure Problem in Hardware/Software Codesign: A Macroscopic Approach. Design, Automation and Test in Europe Conference, 1999.Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Maestro, J.A., D. Mozos, and H. Mecha. A Macroscopic Time and Cost Estimation Model Allowing Task Parallelism and Hardware Sharing for the Codesign Partitioning Process. Design. Automation and Test in Europe Conference, 1998.Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Niemann, R. and P. Marwedel. Hardware/Software Partitioning Using Integer Programming. European Conference on Design and Test, 1996.Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Oudghiri, H. and B. Kaminska. Global Weighted Scheduling and Allocation Algorithms. European Conference on Design Automation, 1992.Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Scheinerman, E.R. and D.H. Ullman. Fractional Graph Theory: A Rational Approach to the Theory of Graphs. Wiley-Interscience, 1997.Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Stitt, G.M., R. Lysecky, and F. Vahid. Dynamic HW/SW Partitioning: A First Approach. Design Automation Conference, 2003.Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Suh, J., D.-I. Kang, and S.P. Crago. A Communication Scheduling Algorithm for Multi-FPGA Systems. IEEE Symposium on Field-Programmable Custom Computing Machines, 2000.Google Scholar
  23. 23.
    Szymanek, R.W. and K. Kuchcinski. Partial Task Assignment of Task Graphs under Heterogeneous Resource Constraints. Design Automation Conference, 2003.Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Theissinger, M., P. Stravers, and H. Veit. Castle: An Interactive Environment for HW-SW Co-Design. Third International Workshop on Hardware/Software Codesign, September 1994.Google Scholar
  25. 25.
    Vahid, F. and D. Gajski. Incremental Hardware Estimation During Hardware/Software Functional Partitioning. IEEE Trans. on VLSI, vol. 3, no. 3, September 1995.Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Voros, N.S., L. Sánchez, A. Alonso, A.N. Birbas, M. Birbas, and A. Jerraya. Hardware/Software Co-Design of Complex Embedded Systems: An Approach Using Efficient Process Models, Multiple Formalism Specification and Validation via Co-Simulation. Journal of Design Automation for Embedded Systems, vol. 8, no. 1, March 2003.Google Scholar
  27. 27.
    Wiangtong, T., P.Y.K. Cheung, and W. Luk. Comparing Three Heuristic Search Methods for Functional Partitioning in Hardware–Software Codesign. Journal of Design Automation for Embedded Systems, vol 6, no. 4, July 2002.Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    Wolf, W. Hardware-Software Co-Design of Embedded Systems. Proceedings of the IEEE, vol. 82, no. 7, July 1994.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, Inc. 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Juan Antonio Maestro
    • 1
  • Daniel Mozos
    • 2
  • Raquel Dormido
    • 3
  • Pedro Reviriego
    • 4
  1. 1.Dept. Ingeniería InformáticaUniversidad Antonio de NebrijaMadridSpain
  2. 2.Dept. Arq. y Tec. de ComputadoresUniversidad Complutense de MadridSpain
  3. 3.Dept. Informática y AutomáticaUNEDMadridSpain
  4. 4.Dept. Ingeniería TelemáticaUniversidad Carlos III de MadridSpain

Personalised recommendations