Chapter 1

Formal verification

From dreams to reality

In Chapter 1, we introduce Formal Verification (FV): the use of tools that mathematically analyze the space of possible behaviors of a design, rather than computing results for particular values. We begin by describing the general concepts and motivations for using FV methods rather than simpler alternatives. We then discuss several major use cases: complete coverage, bug hunting, and exploring designs, as well as providing a brief discussion of more detailed methods used in typical industrial design and validation flows. Having introduced the general topic, we take a step back and briefly trace the historical development of the concepts of formal verification, from Leibniz’s 17th-century ...

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