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Test Definitions


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Access Time
  The time a program or device takes to locate a single piece of information and make it available to the computer for processing. DRAM (dynamic random access memory) chips for personal computers have access times of 50 to 150 nanoseconds (billionths of a second). Static RAM (SRAM) has access times as low as 10 nanoseconds. Ideally, the access time of memory should be fast enough to keep up with the CPU. If not, the CPU will waste a certain number of clock cycles, which makes it slower. Disk access times are measured in milliseconds (thousandths of a second), often abbreviated as ms. Fast hard disk drives for personal computers boast access times of about 9 to 15 milliseconds.
Source: Webopedia
Algorithmic Pattern Generation
  (APG) - Tester resource that generates vectors on-the-fly, programmatically (algorithmically) , usually for memory test.
Source: NP Test
Allocatable Memory
  A memory storage element, typically used to hold image data, on which surfaces of various sizes and resolutions can be allocated.
Source: Datacube
Application Specific Memory
  (ASM) - An integrated high-density memory and logic circuit which offers highly efficient performance and cost advantages in specific end-user applications.
Source: MOSAID Technologies
Arbitrary Waveform Generator
  (AWG) - AWGs let you create waveforms from equations in many ways. Some bench *AWGs*, for example, let you build equations right on the instrument. Others require PC software to write the equations. Equation-writing software ranges from manufacturer-supplied waveform builders to spreadsheets, math packages, and text editors. After you create an equation, you either download it into the AWG, which compiles it into waveform points and stores the points in the instrumentís memory, or you compile the waveform and download its points from a file.
Source: Test & Measurement World, 5/2001
Array Built In Self Test
  (ABIST) - A form of memory BIST for embedded memories.
Source: NPTest
At Speed Test
  Refers to a variety of both memory and logic test techniques to detect timing-related defects that are only apparent when the device is run at system speeds. See also CPA, path delay and transition faults.
Source: Mentor Graphics
At-speed Test
  Testing at actual clock speeds, rather than slower external tester speeds. Refers to a variety of both memory and logic test techniques to detect timing-related defects that are only apparent when the device is run at system speeds.
Source: Hebrew University of Jerusalem "DFT & JTAG" Course
  (BW) - In the semiconductor context, the rate at which data is transferred from one part of a system to another (e.g. from memory to the processor). For example, in a PC using PC100 SDRAM clocked at 100 MHz, the 8 byte (64-bit) wide bus has a bandwidth of 800 MBytes/second. In the telecommunications context, the rate at which data is transferred between systems.
Source: MOSAID Technologies
Basic Input/Output System
  (BIOS) - Pronounced "bye-ose," an acronym for basic input/output system. The BIOS is built-in software that determines what a computer can do without accessing programs from a disk. On PCs, the BIOS contains all the code required to control the keyboard, display screen, disk drives, serial communications, and a number of miscellaneous functions. The BIOS is typically placed in a ROM chip that comes with the computer (it is often called a ROM BIOS). This ensures that the BIOS will always be available and will not be damaged by disk failures. It also makes it possible for a computer to boot itself. Because RAM is faster than ROM, though, many computer manufacturers design systems so that the BIOS is copied from ROM to RAM each time the computer is booted. This is known as shadowing. Many modern PCs have a flash BIOS, which means that the BIOS has been recorded on a flash memory chip, which can be updated if necessary. The PC BIOS is fairly standardized, so all PCs are similar at this level (although there are different BIOS versions). Additional DOS functions are usually added through software modules. This means you can upgrade to a newer version of DOS without changing the BIOS. PC BIOSes that can handle Plug-and-Play (PnP) devices are known as PnP BIOSes, or PnP-aware BIOSes. These BIOSes are always implemented with flash memory rather than ROM.
Source: Webopedia
BISTed Memory
  A memory array with a BIST methodology closely associated -- more specifically, one with the BIST logic in close association so the physical unit may be treated as a single design entity, with associated signals such as Data, Address, Read-Write, Output-Enable, BIST-Invoke, BIST-Done, and BIST-Fail (as opposed to, for example, a single centralized BIST controller that has the ability to test multiple memory arrays).
Source: Verigy
Block mode
  A sampling mode in which the computer prompts the PC Oscilloscope to collect a block of data into its internal memory before stopping the unit and transferring the whole block into computer memory. This is the best mode to use when the input signal being sampled contains high frequencies. Note: To avoid aliasing effects, the sampling rate must be greater than twice the maximum frequency in the input signal.
Source: PicoTechnology Limited
Build-in Self Analysis
  (BISA) - A method related to Built-in Self Repair (BISR) that processes memory failure data to generate repair data.
Source: Mentor Graphics
Built In Self Test
  (BIST) - A design unit generally with on-chip resources to apply stimulus and evaluate responses so that the design unit can be tested to some level from within the chip (for example, memory BIST allows a memory test unit to be placed on-chip, for the purpose of testing the on-chip embedded memory arrays, with minimum direct interaction from an external tester). BIST is commonly described in two main categories, Logic BIST and Memory BIST.
Source: Inovys
Built-In Repair Analysis
  (BIRA) - Technique used to determine if a memory is repairable and the repair information based on the specified redundancy scheme, i.e., spare IO or column, or spare row.
Source: LogicVision
Built-In Self Repair
  (BISR) - A memory repair method that goes beyond diagnostics to actually repair the device through redundancy selection when defects are detected.
Source: Mentor Graphics
Bus Error
  An error that signals failed access to an address. Bus errors occur with low-level accesses to memory and usually involve hardware with bus mapping capabilities. For example, nonexistent memory, a nonexistent register, or an incorrect device access can cause a bus error.
Source: National Instruments
  Pronounced cash, a special high-speed storage/memory mechanism. It can be either a reserved section of main memory or an independent high-speed storage device. Two types of caching are commonly used in personal computers: memory caching and disk caching.
Source: Xilinx
  A Boundary-Scan operation at which data present on an input signal line is loaded into a memory element of the BSR.
Source: Hebrew University of Jerusalem "DFT & JTAG" Course
Combinatorial or Combinational
  A type of circuit or circuit description that is comprised only of combinational gates -- there is no state holding logic, sequential logic, or memory logic in the circuit description. In the context of this text, circuits rendered effectively combinational simplify the ATPG process.
Source: Inovys

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