The original intention of LASI
was to aid commercial design systems. It still can have that
purpose since layout work can be done on any Windows desktop or laptop,
and most Linux
systems using Wine, A layout can then be transferred
using common graphic formats such as GDS.
LASI also runs portably. You
can install the system on a flash drive or other removable drive and
work on drawings also stored on that same drive. Portable
operation lets you do work on any convenient PC without leaving any
files on that PC. This is
handy for presentations and for student projects.
Drawings are built from
hierarchical cells stored as individual TLC (Transportable Layout Cell)
files. TLC files can be easily traded between different drawings. TLC
files are in a basic XML format.
LASI consists of a main drawing editor program and several
"utility" programs. These utilities include GDS, CIF
and DXF format converters, a user programmable bitmap based DRC, a basic
matrix router, and a Spice netlist compiler that extracts Spice circuit files
from both schematic and layout. The utilities
can run independently or
directly out of the editor.
LASI compiles Spice netlist files but does not do simulations. There are good Spice simulators available already.
Spice simulations can be quite customized and are better not integrated
into LASI. However most simulators can run directly out of the main editor or
the Spice compile utility. To use Spice with LASI you should know a
little about Spice netlist format and commands.
For anyone who is not familiar
with LASI or its utilities there is a large built-in Help file system.
Although it is well developed
software by now, LASI is still an ongoing project. There is always something that
you can add, improve or fix. Watch this site for
the latest version. Updates are approximately every few months, sooner if necessary.