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We present MEADE, a Modular, Extensible, Adaptable Design Environment. MEADE has been developed to answer the need for an adaptive design framework for encapsulation of Computer Aided Design (CAD) tools and management of the massive amounts of data associated with the design process. Other frameworks have existed but lacked the critical open source requirement that enables rapid adaptation to a rapidly advancing design methodology. While the initial application and development of MEADE is targeted toward ASIC and FPGA design, the MEADE engine can be easily adapted to abstract any procedural application.

MEADE allows the definition of procedures, which are defined as some sequence or flow of actions, which can be performed by potentially multiple different agents. With this system, design methodology management is specified in the procedures. Tool interoperability is handled by the action definitions. The unique agents perform tool interchangeability (the use of “best-inclass” tools). All details of procedure implementation are extended outside of the MEADE microkernel to the individual agent modules (Source code control, code builds, multi-user simulations, etc.). With an open, extensible system, the design community will be able to integrate specific design flows and account for sitespecific variances. Additionally, new CAD tools can be rapidly integrated into a design flow for effective evaluation. It is believed that the simple modular interface and open-source philosophy will enable MEADE to succeed where other CAD frameworks have failed.


Originally a part of the 3rd Perl Conference, 1999.