[Cryptography] Internet of Things and small cheap ASICs?

Bill Cox waywardgeek at gmail.com
Wed Oct 1 16:54:37 EDT 2014

Personally, the Internet of Things seems to have a major security problem.
I personally do not plan to hook my thermostat to the Internet any time
soon, for example.  Can anyone point me to the best papers describing how
to actually secure the IoT?

Since you guys were so helpful with feedback on my Infinite Noise Generator
concept, I thought I'd go back to the well and bug you about something a
bit less crypto related...

I am trying to find out if there is any need for board-level designers out
there to be able to create small mixed-signal ASICs. I'm not talking about
an iPod-Nano on a chip, but simple arrays of capacitors, resistors,
transistors, a few logic gates, and maybe some amplifiers. The die would be
tiny, and each would have the same components. Designs would be configured
with custom routing. The minimum order might be 1,000.

So, for example, a chip you could design using say 100 0.1pF caps, 300 6K
Ohm resistors, maybe 50 analog N and P mosfets configured for analog (wide
gates), maybe 20-ish T-gates, and 20-ish logic gates (NAND/NOR/INV), a
couple of op-amps, and maybe 16 pads, and come in some tiny 16-pin surface
mount package. It might even have 1K-ish gates of real logic, and 128
FLOPs, and even a small block of SRAM, if people think it should. The
resistors would not be very accurate, but they would match well. Same thing
for the other components. It would come with free design tools, likely
based on existing open-source tools. Something like this I think can be
done for under $1/chip, in quantities of 1,000.

I am trying to figure out if this is a good fit for helping enable the
Internet of Things. It might be useful for simple sensor interfaces, for
example, or reducing part-counts and size. Would anything like that be

Thanks Bill
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