I worked at Magma Design full-time (More than a year)
surrounded by smart people, solving classic hard CS problems, most of them NP-complete, so smart heuristics are invented to solve them. a lot of non-trivial ( i.e. not just a button somewhere ) inventions are made by the company.
very small market that are squeezed by both sides: foundry and semiconductor companies, hence very little growth in terms of business, and translated to little personal growth, even worse is that many Ph.Ds stayed there for long long years, so you need to wait them out to be promoted.
Advice to Management
be brave, try to take the pie from the semiconductor companies, even though they are your customers.
I applied through an employee referral. The process took 1 day. I interviewed at Magma Design (San Jose, CA) in December 2010.
It is long hiring process took more than 1month.
You can negotiate and there are chances.
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