In today’s world, it is often required by the members of a design team to share their design information with people outside the organization. This process of sharing valuable design data with the outside world — third party vendors, OEM manufacturers, contractors etc. — is unaviodable in most cases. Functional Models, also known as Bus Functional Models (BFM), play an important role in protecting intellectual property in such circumstances. PLI can be used to take advantage of the easy-to-program aspect of C together with rich simulation features of Verilog to produce functional models. In this chapter, we will find out the reasons behind making PLI as the choice for writing such models. Our first example of a simple crossbar switch will illustrate how to write a functional model. Once this gives the basic idea, we will move to designing a functional model of a rudimentary processor. From these examples, it will become apparent why PLI is the only choice for writing such a model.
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