Siliquent says it will get around this problem, for now, using a combination of programmable components and hard-wired ASICs (application-specific integrated circuits). Later, once the standard is complete, it plans to move the whole shooting match into silicon.
Siliquents founders say they have the experience to deliver the goods. The issues of port density (or getting multiple ports on a single chip), physical space shortages and power limitations in the storage equipment world are the same challenges we faced in designing DSLAM chips, says Arazi. At the end of the day its a networking problem, which we understand.
Siliquent has certainly done enough to convince Benchmark and Greylock that it is onto something unique. "New investments are carefully scrutinized nowadays" says Charles Chi, general partner of Greylock. "We believe Siliquent's ability to combine expertise such as ASIC technology, networking, and storage to be a promising combination."
Siliquents chips will be generally available in late 2002, the company claims. Its target market is all the major storage array vendors -- EMC Corp. (NYSE: EMC), Hitachi Data Systems (HDS), IBM Corp. (NYSE: IBM), and anyone else developing iSCSI-based switching devices.
The company has 20 on staff and is recruiting across the board, while also looking for premises in the U.S.