The Telecommunications Software & Systems Group (TSSG) of Waterford Institute of Technology, as part of their role in the SpeakNGI.eu project, was involved in the organisation of the Next Generation Internet Forum (NGI Forum 2018), which took place at the Alfandega Porto Congress Centre in Porto, Portugal on 13 September, 2018. It was the second annual edition of the event, after last year’s successful NGI Forum in Barcelona.
NGI Forum 2018 attracted more than 200 attendees from 35 countries worldwide. There were 26 speakers, including keynotes and expert panels, and three parallel interactive group sessions. The participants were active, engaged and excited to be part of the growing movement of internet innovators, researchers, policymakers, SMEs and corporations who are building the internet of tomorrow, which is envisaged to be more human-centric, empowering citizens and communities, and using technologies that will ensure openness but, at the same time, security, privacy and trust.
James Clarke and Paul Malone from the TSSG group of WIT were co-organisers of one of the interactive sessions at the event due to their role in the coordination of the SpeakNGI.eu project, one of the first projects of the NGI initiative, which is breaking ground on the setting up of a large scale NGI Flagship in the latter part of Horizon 2020 and it’s follow-up Horizon Europe programme starting in 2021. The SpeakNGI.eu project members, including those from WIT-TSSG and their partner, Trust-IT, organised an interactive session covering the NGI topic related to “Better search for trustworthy content and objects discovery”. The name of the session was “CAN YOU BELIEVE WHAT YOU READ? GUARANTEEING TRUSTWORTHY SEARCH RESULTS AND CONTENT DISCOVERY”.
According to James Clarke (left), “the approach we took for our session was address our topic from four different perspectives: Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs) role in NGI, as it is recognised they will play a big part in developing the new technologies required for NGI, the use of advanced semantic technologies for data and content discovery, improvement of interoperability, quantity and quality of information available in open data portals, and tackling online disinformation, which is a very “hot topic” in this period in time we are living.
According to Paul Malone (right), “After four expert speakers gave their views, we broke into four working groups with the objective to look at the human values being addressed by NGI, the challenges raised by those values, known initiatives addressing those challenges. Subsequently, the working groups identified the gaps and research and innovation (R&I) priority NGI topics to fill the gaps.”
Malone continued, “the NGI R&I topics identified during the session included advanced tools for semantic data organisation linked by their semantic “meaning”, especially considering human values like privacy and fairness and adhering to GDPR requirements; Remote / Automated enforcement of data handling rules, using AI to extract semantic meaning and innovative solutions to contextually manage data release; and Ensuring correctness and authenticity of entire value chain verification mechanisms to guarantee accuracy of online information.”