The growing potency in an Enterprise AI Platform combined with Graph Data Platform is successfully enhancing machine learning models and ultimately tackling empowering decision making effectively. Undeniably, both technologies work hand-in-hand to make data relationships simpler by being scalable, performant, efficient and agile.
From tracing connections via complicated social networks to comprehending interconnections, Graph Data Platform databases with Enterprise AI Platform have proven to be an excellent tool for data management in real-time. The most evident advantages of Graph Data Platform were seen during the current pandemic when governments needed to track down community infections.
Graph Data Platform aids governments in making data-driven, intelligent decisions. Additionally, it prevents fraud and potential information leaks that have mushroomed disproportionally with the rapid COVID-driven digitalisation.
The added agility that Enterprise AI Platform and Graph Data Platform offers makes it clear that the combination should be the preferred decision-making methodology. Further, an Enterprise AI Platform along with a Graph Data Platform has proven to be cost-effective for the government.
In times of crisis, obtaining information in real-time has become critical for decision-making. With a Graph Data Platform that is integrated with an Enterprise AI Platform, information can be structurally arranged quickly, analysed to draw conclusions that can influence decision-making and drive change. These powerful capabilities are the missing link for government to drive actionable outcomes from data.
The pandemic heralds an age where digital transformation in public sectors must take centre stage if governments want to be able to lead and navigate citizens through increasingly complex times. An enhanced machine learning model is the key to helping government agencies build intelligent applications that traverse today’s large, interconnected datasets in real-time. The copious volumes of data that organisations generate and collect need to be analysed and interpreted if they are to streamline government methods in forecasting and serve policymakers in effective decision-making.
The main inquiry of OpenGovLive! Virtual Breakfast Insight was centred on the use of Graph Data Platform and Enterprise AI Platform to generate deep insights for incisive decision-making. This was a closed-door, invitation-only, interactive session with top-level executives from Singapore public sector.
Tackling complex challenges in the public sector through Enterprise AI Platform and Graph Data Platform
Mohit Sagar, Group Managing Director and Editor-in-Chief, OpenGov Asia, kicked off the session with his opening address. The world has fundamentally changed, and the challenges of these times will require sophisticated solutions that will be critical for decision-making in real-time. Without a doubt, technology is a priority, Mohit asserts.
Governments across the world are looking for excellent tools for data management in real-time that can provide insights into data, Mohit acknowledges. The growing potency in an Enterprise AI Platform combined with Graph Data Platform has been proven to strengthen machine learning models and address complex decision making effectively, making it an ideal tool.
In Mohit’s opinion, Singapore is in its infancy when it comes to the adoption of AI technology. “Where does Graph Data fit in if there are already enough tools we are using for AI?” he asks. For him, there is a gap between good to great and that it is the combination of these technologies – AI and Graph Database – that makes the difference.
Graph Data Technology, Mohit firmly believes, is an eventuality; organisations will need it at some point. “You are going to absorb the technology in the future – it is here to stay,” he contends.
AI and Data Graph technology complement the Singapore government’s initiative to make data relationships simpler by being scalable, performant, efficient and agile. Mohit acknowledges that the Singapore government has already begun its drive towards a digital government, harnessing AI and Graph Databases to curb Covid in Singapore. Citing the current examples and practices of AI and Data Graphs, Mohit elaborated on the tremendous benefits and practicalities of these combined technologies.
Singapore has been doing well in utilising insights to inform decision-making. One of the most obvious use cases for graphs is contact tracing for COVID-19 infections. Since COVID-19 proliferates through social interactions, graphs are perfectly suited to helping scientists and policymakers expose and understand connected data – from tracing connections through complex social networks to understanding dependencies between people, places, and events.
He urged the agencies represented at the session to recognise the need to elevate the technology that organisations are using. Mohit reminded the delegates of the complexity of the challenges besetting the world today. Against this backdrop, it would be wise for delegates to partner with experts to better place themselves to respond with agility and efficiency in a rapidly evolving world.
Transforming collected data to connected data with Graph technology
Robin Fong, Regional Director – ASEAN, Neo4j, spoke next on the uses of Graph Database technology and how it can springboard agencies in their alignment with the priority of the Singapore government.
Whether it is humans or AI, “context is key in decision-making,” Robin argues. Making decisions require going beyond the numbers to understand relationships. Humans make tens of thousands of decisions daily, most of which depend on perceptions of surrounding circumstances.
Similarly, machine learning and AI need to be able to access and process a great deal of contextual and connected information, so it can learn from adjacent information, make judgements and adjust to circumstances.
As data is everywhere, the first step is collecting it – data ingestion. This is the acquisition and transportation of data from assorted sources to a storage medium. The next level is in providing deeper context and moving beyond merely collecting data to connecting the dots.
For business leaders to decide swiftly, they require the maximum amount of context they can gather through technology. “Our challenge is to make context practical and actionable for humans, automated processes and AI.”
Where Neo4j’s graph technology gives an edge is in producing deep context through processing collected data to connected data. “How do you solve deep problems with deep relationships?” Robin asks
If organisations can combine data, semantics and a graph structure, they will end up with a knowledge graph that has dynamic and very deep context because it is built around connected data.
Neo4j is the creator of the Property Graph and Cypher language at the core of the GQL ISO project. With thousands of Customers World-Wide, Neo4j is headquartered in Silicon Valley and has outposts in Singapore, Indonesia China, Australia, India and Japan.
Graph technology is extremely versatile and can elevate the capability of companies and agencies. With graph technology, people can solve the previously unsolvable. Top financial institutions, retailers and Telecoms, global governments overseeing civilian affairs, defence, and intelligence use Neo4j to analyse, optimise and protect. They have enabled customers to manage financial fraud, patient outcomes, the mission to Mars, global fare pricing and vaccine distribution.
There are many use cases in resource management, oversight, security, planning, science and education. Robin offered examples where Neo4j graph technology is commonly used in the public sector.
In the context of the pandemic, the technology is extremely competent in the tracking, isolating and vaccination processes of COVID-19. Further, it can be used for recruitment and talent management, which aligns well with the government’s priorities about being future-ready.
Before Graph Technology, connections were tabular, but with Graph technology, relationships are fleshed out for a single individual. This will impact the way teams are built. For instance, when people are put into special projects, graph data can connect and recommend the optimal combination.
In closing, Robin reminded delegates that Neo4j created the graph category and that it is a tool that can catapult organisations in their growth through faster and better-quality insights.
Levelling up business and agency outcomes through a unified AI platform
Alvin Pang, Sales Director, Asia, Dataiku spoke on how AI can be integrated into the operations and processes to solve problems and deliver results for businesses and agencies.
Dataiku is a software company that provides end-to-end data science and machine learning platforms. The company is headquartered in New York and Paris, with a regional based in Singapore for Asia operations.
“AI technology is becoming commonplace,” Alvin opines. To stand out and deliver extraordinary results, the challenge is in utilising AI at scale and deftly integrating technology, people, and processes.
The question is: How can you holistically drive a process across technology and people in a coherent manner to deliver results fast and in a sustainable manner?
Continuing with an examination of the AI maturity journey, he says as organisations peel away from the experiment stage, into the established stage and operationalise use cases, they start to encounter conflicting objectives that they need to satisfy.
Some of these objectives include choosing between giving teams freedom or company with Information Technology standards, promoting innovation across all business units while striking a balance in governance and not introducing shadow IT.
With Dataiku, organisations can have the best of both worlds by systematising AI. He is convinced that the process is about empowering people (experts, citizens, data scientists etc.), accelerating AI from months to days and governing AI lifecycles company-wide to ensure good visibility across all data assets.
The unique value Dataiku offers is a unified platform to systematise AI operations through a centralised workbench for everyone, streamlined paths to production and integration with agencies’ stack that is governed at scale. Taken together, what Dataiku offers is the ability to drive greater collaboration at higher quality and enable good governance over data.
Dataiku would be happy to work with organisations thinking of accelerating their growth. As they have proven to drive 423% RoI over 3 years, he feels delegates would be well served to collaborate with them.
Making deep connections and elevating your work from “good” to “great”
Dr David R. Hardoon, Managing Director of Aboitiz Data Innovation and Senior Advisor, Data & Artificial Intelligence, UnionBank of the Philippines, talked about the critical nature of understanding relationships across all forms of data.
Explaining the theory of the 6 degrees of connections and David believes “everything is fundamentally situated and based on relationships and connections.”
At the moment organisations are at the point of understanding data, although more are moving to the next stage. To unlock the next level, organisations need to master the stage they are currently at.
“Connections networks and graph cuts across every field,” David asserts. Understanding someone from the underlying relationships, influence and productivity unearth the underpinning motivations and rationale people have.
This begs the question: how then, do we make those connections and leverage that information? How do we understand how to identify or detect an event using that insight?
The first step would be to focus on what organisations want to achieve, identify the “why” and work back in terms of the “how.”
For example, if the desire is to find out how to encourage people to get vaccinated, it is about working backwards to understand the type of data you need and the relationships required.
When asked about what constitutes “good” and “great,” David felt that the difference is in operationalisation. The biggest challenge is in being able to execute and turn insights into operational decisions. The work becomes great when “insights that are operational,” that is, information that forms decision support pillars that leads to implementation and execution.
His advice is to focus on how the insights are operational, “achieve greatness, then go for the good to have.” Regardless, David pointed out that organisations should not “be distracted by perfection.”
After the informative presentations, delegates participated in interactive discussions facilitated by polling questions. This activity is designed to provide live-audience interaction, promote engagement, hear real-life experiences, and facilitate discussions that impart professional learning and development for participants.
In the first poll, delegates were asked about the most important factor in their analytics journey. Half of the delegates indicated that evolving their data infrastructure/architecture is the most important (53%). The rest of the delegates were split between the time to deliver results (13%), consolidation and digitalisation of assets (13%) and data security for data science (13%). The rest of the votes went into hiring data scientists/analysts (8%).
A delegate said knowing what data to collect and how to leverage data for policy formulation is important. We need to think about what we are trying to achieve before identifying the data sources.
For David, all the options are important but, to him, everything stems from the time to deliver. Using the banking industry as an example, he shared that the time to deliver end-to-end used to be about 8-10 months. By setting a target to reduce it to three days, all other considerations will follow, for it would involve evolving the data infrastructure in terms of requirements for security procedures.
The following question inquired on what delegates thought their organisation are at in terms of analytics or AI maturity. Most of the delegates selected self-service visualisation (37%), followed by predictive analytics (25%). The other delegates voted for the collection and consolidation of data (19%). The rest of the votes were split between dashboarding (13%) and standard reporting (6%).
A delegate remarked that while they were one of the early adopters of AI, the technology has not moved very much from that. Although they use tools in visualisation, they are lacking the ability to understand data across organisations that can help with service improvements, practical decisions, and operational decisions. He believes that users do not know what they want – they need guidance on what data to collect, how much to collect and how much personalisation.
Nuancing the position, David believes users know what they want but require conversations that bridge the different points of view to elicit firm answers.
Mohit agrees that businesses often do not know what they want. Additionally, he points out, goalposts are regularly shifting, indicating that people may have to reassess what they want.
On the challenges faced while implementing analytics or data science practice, most delegates indicated felt business and IT restrictions in delivering analytical projects/work as the main challenge (37%). The remaining votes were split between understanding where to get the data from to build a practice (19%) and understanding business needs and requirements (19%). The rest of the delegates found the lack of skillsets – proprietary language or different systems (13%), time to deliver analytics projects to production (6%) and not having enough manpower (6%) the main challenge.
One delegate expressed that their struggle lies in using data to formulate strategies. End-users must find correlation and how best to do it. The difficulty is in nailing down the policy question.
When asked about areas delegates saw their organisation expanding data science practice, most expressed that self-service analytics – citizen data scientists (57%) are the priority, followed by cyber / C3 ops (22%), data platforms and consolidation (14%) and MLOPS (7%).
On that note, David explained that he selected MLOPS because the point about using technology is not about innovation per se but turning data into an operational reality.
Regarding the biggest challenge that they faced, most delegates indicated connecting data effectively as a challenge (35%). Other delegates were equally split between drawing insights (29%) and exploring data relationships (29%). The remaining found data interpretation challenging (7%).
In the conversation on this issue, delegates spoke of other prevailing challenges such as not having a data warehouse where data can be accessed easily and the inability to explore data relationships to cross-reference to other data sources.
David pointed out that when managing data, there is rethinking to be done. Too often, organisations are collecting data that they do not need. He stated the need to “understand that data is there for specific purposes.”
Mohit added that it is about surfacing the storyline and connections in the data.
The last poll inquired about the common data Integration and connection challenges faced. Half of the delegates indicated disparate data formats and sources as the challenge that they face (50%). The rest of the votes were split between the fact that the data is not available where it needs to be (22%), other (14%), having low-quality or outdated data (7%) and having too much data (7%).
Mohit remarked that even in a smart nation like Singapore, there are challenges that affect organisations – data collection, data storage and quality of data.
David is of the view that the problem with data is people. “We have all the tools,” he remarked, “but we put limitations on ourselves.” For him, we are leveraging enough in the way that we handle data.
Agreeing with David, Mohit added that the issue might be that “people do not know what tools to use.” Organisations have too much data but are unsure of how they can harness the information to generate insights.
In closing, Robin expressed his gratitude towards everyone for their participation and highly energetic discussion.
Summarising the discussion, Robin pointed out that organisations need to begin with the question of what they want to achieve and link it to policy questions. That would provide clarity on what organisations want to achieve and map that outcome onto the data to be collected.
After identifying, it is about knowing where to get the data and grappling with the over-collection of data. Finally, the following question would be on finding tools and ways to cross-refer insights and links across data sets.
Robin emphasised the edge AI and Graph technology can offer organisations in their journey towards digital transformation. Complex problems required innovative solutions. Harnessing the twin capabilities of AI and Graph can boost capabilities by generating real-time information and deeper analysis.
Before ending the session, Robin echoed David in highlighting the importance of not being distracted by what organisations do not have. He urged delegates to start with what they have and operationalise the insights by connecting data and applying AI.
Mohit added, “Data is only gold if it is giving us the insights and when people have access to them.”
Reiterating that digital transformation is an ongoing and collaborative journey, Robin encouraged the delegates to connect with him and the team to explore ways forward.
Science, engineering, technology, and innovation give people the power to develop a country and its quality of life. Investment in these areas is vital for economic growth and social progress.
Research and development in smart tech can help build greener cities with better access to essential systems and services for all. Moreover, infrastructure development, technology transfer and public and private R&D must be supported and regulated by good policies if they are to work.
To ensure scientific progress is encouraged and embraced at all levels of government decision-making, the Academy of Sciences Malaysia (ASM) is tasked with giving strategic advice to the government and stakeholders, as well as pursuing excellence in science, engineering, and technology for the benefit of everyone.
Malaysia’s S.E.T.I. initiatives
Hazami Habib, Chief Executive Officer of the Academy of Sciences Malaysia, believes that bringing together experts from all fields of scientific, technological and humanities endeavour to address pressing national issues relating to science, engineering, technology, and innovation as well as to provide strategic input to the whole nation, the government will provide unrivalled public service.
One of the contributions of the ASM is to incorporate interactive learning of STEM into the pedagogy of education in Malaysian schools. “To see the performance and results, inquiry-based science education (IBSE) will create an interactive learning environment in the physical classroom. Therefore, we want to have this kind of ecosystem and environment in schools.”
She is eager to see more collaboration between tertiary education and industry so that any courses and curricula provided by universities are both industry-required and future-proof. This is why their organisation is working with the government to create collaboration between industry and academia. “I believe that will help us advance more.”
ASM is currently working with the Malaysian government, in particular the central agency, to begin evaluating public decision-making universities based on data. Hence, using facts, metrics, and data to inform strategic business decisions that align with goals, objectives, and initiatives is the most effective data-driven decision-making.
Making data-driven decisions the norm within an organisation is necessary to foster a climate that values skepticism and curiosity. “Data is the starting point of conversations at every level, and people improve their data skills through practice and application,” says Hazami.
At its core, this calls for a self-service model where users can access the data they require while maintaining a balance between security and governance. Additionally, it necessitates proficiency, resulting in opportunities for training and development for workers to acquire data skills.
Additionally, ASM has developed a Responsible Conduct of Research module which acts as a benchmark to have this code of ethics in research taught to all graduates, whether they are in hard sciences or the social sciences.
“We want that because every piece of knowledge we incorporate in the future will be based on good science and value. Therefore, we must consider bioethics, biosecurity, and training modules on ethics in research,” Hazami explains.
ASM has recently directed its scientists to provide solutions in close collaboration with the ministries. Citing as an example is their committee on water, energy, health, agriculture, and biodiversity (WEHAB++). For instance, when Malaysia faces issues such as the price hike for chicken feed which causes societal dissatisfaction, solutions to food security issues such as this can be provided by the Academy’s expert network through science and technology directly to the government and stakeholders.
In addition to providing policies and strategies to decision-makers, the ASM also teaches them how to carry out those policies and strategies by applying their knowledge.
Hazami highlighted the growing movement called “Open Science” which aims to open scientific data and research to the public. In addition to democratising knowledge, the international principle of making research data findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable (FAIR) will support open scientific inquiry and integrity, facilitate improved research management, and encourage data-intensive research.
Unprecedented insights and solutions to local, regional, and global complex challenges are made possible by integrating numerous data streams and enormous datasets across numerous disciplines.
Through the Malaysia Open Science Alliance, the Ministry of Energy, Science, Technology, Environment & Climate Change (MESTECC), now known as the Ministry of Science, Technology, and Innovation (MOSTI) and the ASM are laying the groundwork for the realisation of the Malaysia Open Science Platform (MOSP), a strategic transformative project to strengthen Malaysia’s STI Collaborative Ecosystem.
“The Malaysia Open Science Platform or MOSP aims to connect raw research data, then collaborate and share,” Hazami explains. “By creating a reliable platform that enables accessibility and sharing of research data aligned to national priorities and international best practices, this initiative seeks to transform Malaysia’s research data into a valuable national asset.”
Hazami is passionate about science and technology because it has the power to change the nation. “I’m attempting to make a change, and one of those changes is in the area of science and technology.”
For her, the most meaningful contribution in her 26 years in the academy was when the government accepted 80% of their recommendations for transforming and creating change and an ecosystem. “For now, our current areas of focus are strengthening governance, the innovation ecosystem and the sustainability of R&D funding.”
A change in paradigm towards a growth mindset among policymakers, scientists and the younger generations is her greatest challenge and greatest passion. She believes that when decision-making is based on data, it can provide the best solution possible.
Hazami strongly believes that Malaysian women are more than capable of pursuing careers in science and technology. They hope to have a strong support network to help them succeed in those fields, whether as practitioners or scientists.
“Our goal is flexibility. We need to have an open work environment and open innovation because we can work from home as researchers and scientists. We are more adaptable now. If we can accomplish this, more and more women will contribute to the workforce more effectively,” she says emphatically.
By reaching out to the top management and demystifying technical terms, OpenGov Asia, a steadfast supporter of Malaysia’s digital transformation journey and an advocate for citizen-centric development, will continue to help bring about change. Hazami concludes by urging top leaders to practice a growth mindset for the betterment of the country.
Hazami strongly believes that over the course of the next five years, ASM will continue to serve as a catalyst for change and create the science, technology, innovation, and economy (STIE) ecosystem for the entire nation towards the full potential of digital transformation, including the Malaysian transformation and the humanisation of the economy. “Leaders’ courageous decisions pave the road to successful digital transformation.”
The Institute for Digital Molecular Analytics and Science (IDMxS), which aims to promote the science of analysing biological molecules (biomolecules) using information technology and data science, was recently established by Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (NTU Singapore). This could pave the way for real-time environmental or health data monitoring and analysis, like how real-time traffic data can be obtained on mobile devices.
IDMxS, NTU’s newest national Research Centre of Excellence (RCE), is funded with a total investment of over S$160 million over 10 years, with the majority coming from NTU and the National University of Singapore and S$94 million coming from the Singapore Ministry of Education.
Digital molecular analytics, a novel scientific discipline that analyses individual molecules to discover, identify, and measure biomolecules with extraordinary accuracy, is at the core of the work done at IDMxS.
Such a science will open many new areas of research, such as the creation of diagnostic testing capabilities that may then inspire the creation of new technologies and commercial spinoffs, including blood testing kits that can generate findings instantly using nothing more than a smartphone camera.
The interdisciplinary centre is anticipated to house 100 full-time researchers and employees with backgrounds ranging throughout the spectrum of engineering and science, from optics, computer science, and artificial intelligence (AI) to biology, medical technology, and chemistry.
Postgraduate students from NTU will have exceptional chances for interdisciplinary education and training that spans the molecular sciences and information technology through the graduate programme of IDMxS. More than 30 PhD students will receive support from the Centre, four of whom have already begun their studies. As clinical diagnostics become more digital, IDMxS will also create continuing education programmes aimed at developing and modernising the healthcare workforce.
By fusing the fields of biology and information technology – which have each recently undergone revolutionary changes – IDMxS will create the new science of digital molecular analytics. The objective is to develop tools that can track environmental data, such as air and water quality, and health information, like viral infections or molecular signatures that signal the existence of a disease, in real-time. To develop innovative solutions for issues with health, sickness, and environmental monitoring, this process begins with the development of fundamental science.
The ability to simultaneously gather a variety of data types from a biological sample and use tools like AI and machine learning algorithms to analyse and interpret the enormous volume of data that would otherwise be impossible for humans to make sense of is at the core of IDMxS’ digital molecular analytical strategies. The research centre intends to someday spin out solutions like widely used software using digital molecular analytics.
Moreover, making blood sample test kits is one potential use for digital molecular analytics that IDMxS is investigating. The goal of this research is to create a tool that can recognise the various chemicals responsible for illnesses, infections, and diseases.
This suggests that a physician might someday be able to take a blood sample, analyse it with a smartphone camera, and obtain an accurate, real-time reading next to the patient at the doctor’s table. A similar idea might do away with the necessity for additional time-consuming laboratory tests.
The extensive surveillance of illnesses spread by insects like dengue and malaria is another project that is now under development. Researchers can one day create an imaging system that can swiftly detect and monitor dengue among the mosquito population by recognising and analysing the chemicals that make up the dengue virus. Such studies might also be used to track other airborne infections and infectious diseases, in addition to insect-borne diseases that affect urban health.
In a bid to become a digital airline, the Vietnam Airlines Engineering Company Ltd (VAECO), a subsidiary of Vietnam Airlines, has signed a cooperation agreement with private players to deploy an aircraft maintenance and engineering management software system. Under the agreement, the system will provide technical management tools, manage the maintenance programme more closely, and more efficiently synchronise data. This will contribute to reducing maintenance costs and time, improving the operational readiness factor for the fleet.
The software also provides tools for planning, controlling maintenance procedures, and managing human resources to optimise production processes. It will minimise labour costs for recording and data entry and work control, leading to an overall increase in labour productivity, by an estimated 15-20%
The software provides synchronous information about failure status, maintenance history, and the status of spare parts. This enables technicians to make effective and timely repair decisions. It is expected to reduce flight stoppages, delays, and cancellations.
Furthermore, the system will shorten the aircraft maintenance time and create favourable conditions for the airline to concentrate human resources to expand the outside maintenance market share. The Deputy General Director of Vietnam Airlines, Nguyen Chien Thang, noted that the new technology will make an important contribution to helping VAECO become a leading aircraft maintenance service provider in the region while accelerating digital transformation.
Currently, Vietnam Airlines is the airline with the largest fleet in Vietnam, with more than 100 aircraft including Boeing 787, Airbus A350, A321, A321neom, and ATR72. The airline is constantly modernising its fleet, as well as improving its aircraft maintenance capacity and mastering new technologies.
In January, the airline launched two e-commerce platforms VNAMAZING, VNAMALL as well as its Vietnam Airlines Gift Card. The services were the first of their kind in the domestic aviation sector. VNAMAZING offers online tourism services including tour and accommodation bookings. VNAMALL provides a wide range of aviation and non-aviation goods and services.
As OpenGov Asia reported, the Vietnam Airlines Gift Card is a product available on VNAMALL, which can be used to exchange airline tickets or avail of business class upgrade benefits on flights operated by Vietnam Airlines, Pacific Airlines, and VASCO. An official from Vietnam Airlines said that the airline considers e-commerce development one of its top priorities.
In August, the carrier announced that passengers using the airline’s air service can now access a free-of-charge news-reader application called PressReader for Vietnamese and international publications. The application provides more than 7,000 digital newspaper and magazine titles available in over 70 languages. According to Vietnam Airlines, passengers can use the application 24 hours before the scheduled departure time and 24 hours after landing.
To use the app, passengers must download the Vietnam Airlines app, choose the PressReader button, and verify their booking code and flight information. Articles can be read online or downloaded for offline reading.
Most recently, Vietnam Airlines launched an online check-in service for passengers departing from Phu Bai airport in the central province of Thua Thien-Hue. The move increases efficiency and improves customer experience and convenience. Passengers are now able to check in via the official portal or the Vietnam Airlines application within 24 hours to one hour ahead of departure.
The seven best smart cities in Indonesia were announced at the Ministry of Communication and Informatics seminar and exhibition on the Movement Towards Smart Cities (Smart City) in 2022 in Jakarta. Representatives from 141 regencies attend the event in a framework for evaluating the implementation of the Smart City 2022 program.
District/city officials who have succeeded in developing a master plan under the Smart City development in their respective regions attended. The session was organised to showcase the commitment of all regional leaders so that the community see the benefits and progress, said Bambang Dwi Anggono, Director of Government Information Application Services (LAIP) of the Ministry of Communication and Information.
The five best cities and two districts took the Smart City award in the following categories:
- Smart Governance: City of Bandung,
- Smart Branding: Surakarta City,
- Smart Economy: Semarang City,
- Smart Society: City of Yogyakarta,
- Smart Living: Demak Regency,
- Smart Environment: Madiun City, and
- National Priority Tourism Area: Wonogiri
The Smart City initiative is a strategic step toward addressing development plans holistically. The programme aims to harmonise regional government sectors and regional initiative programmes with other regional governments, the central government, the business world, and even other countries. Local governments can work together with other local governments, businesses, academia, and the general public to launch various initiatives that will have a positive impact.
The Smart City Movement aims to guide regions and cities across Indonesia in designing digital-based development that considers each region’s potential and challenges. Furthermore, the Smart City programme can bring innovations from Jakarta to other areas, ensuring an even distribution of development programmes.
The Ministry of Communication and Information has facilitated interconnection with relevant parties in the Smart City development. In addition, the Ministry, through the LAIP Directorate, intends to include 50 regencies/cities in the Smart City master plan assistance in 2023.
“We hope that regional leaders (regents/mayors) will have the courage to innovate and make breakthroughs for the good of society. Correspondingly, we encourage regional heads to become change agents in these breakthroughs (SPBE),” said Bambang Dwi Anggono.
The Ministry intends to implement Smart Province next year. The Smart Province programme will select two provinces in 2023 to prepare the master plan. Smart Province development conceptualises development innovations at the provincial level and coordinates Smart City development at the district level within its jurisdiction. Two provinces will be selected to help prepare the master plan.
Semuel Abrijani Pangerapan, Director General of Informatics Applications at the Ministry of Communication and Information, emphasised the importance of digital transformation as a foundation for building smart cities.
“Creating a Smart City begins with digital transformation; from there, every local government understands what is required. Because each Regional Government has unique characteristics. But, in the end, everything will point to the holistic Smart City that we taught,” he was quoted as saying.
He also stressed the importance of creating a master plan for the long-term development of Smart Cities as establishing a smart city would take 15 to 20 years. As a result, the Ministry has created a programme to educate local entities on constructing a Smart City.
The Ministry of Digital Economy and Society (MDES) has sped up the development of technology to keep up with the fast changes in the economy, society, and way of life. This is especially important for the year 2023 when people’s activities around the world are expected to rely more on digital systems, such as finances, business, information management, transportation, and many other things.
The Digital Post ID was recently introduced by Chaiwut Thanakmanusorn, Minister of Digital Economy and Society (DES). The system is currently undergoing testing by the necessary organisations and is anticipated to be implemented by 2023.
The government agency is making strides to improve digital innovation infrastructure. According to the Digital Economy Promotion Master Plan (2018 – 2022), there is a proposal to alter the form of addressing information into a digital address, known as Digital Post ID by designating the Thai Post Office as a regulating body.
The MDES runs projects to improve Thailand’s delivery system, which has been based on five-digit postal codes for more than 40 years. This is done by making it easier to find people in Thailand with a digital 1post ID code that can be turned into their address coordinates down to the household level.
To facilitate having a digital post ID In the future, post offices or logistics providers will have QR code label printers that digitally affix a post ID to parcels or envelopes. Personal information will not be displayed on the box or envelope’s address, so both the recipient and sender may rest assured that their privacy will be protected.
The application must be installed on the device to scan the QR Code and display the sender-recipient information, and the QR Code has a single usage. In addition, access to various information is restricted in accordance with the Personal Data Protection Act 2019 principles. In addition, it will ensure the purchase of e-Commerce products more because it may connect the delivery routes.
The Digital Post ID service provided by Thailand Post is an extremely helpful one that helps to maintain the safety and confidentiality of the documents owned by individuals. In addition, Thailand is rapidly embracing digital technology, and the country is becoming increasingly well-connected. With a population of over 69 million, the country is home to a wide range of Internet users, and digital technology is growing rapidly.
The Thai government has been proactive in promoting digital technology and has implemented several initiatives to help the country keep up with the rest of the world. This includes increasing access to high-speed Internet, encouraging digital literacy, and investing in the development of digital infrastructure.
The government has also been encouraging the use of mobile phones, tablets and laptops. These devices are becoming increasingly popular and are being used by people of all ages to access information and services.
The Thai government has also been investing in the development of cloud computing services. This has enabled businesses in the country to store their data securely and access it quickly and easily. Cloud computing has also enabled businesses to reduce their costs, as they can access services without having to invest in physical infrastructure. Furthermore, the Thai government is promoting the development of e-commerce and online payment systems
The Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) announced the launch of a S$5 million Virtual Production Innovation Fund to support the local media industry in developing the capabilities needed to harness virtual production technology to maintain the local media industry’s competitiveness as the international partner of choice to create premium IP.
To enable the camera to capture actors and visual effects in real time, virtual production technology uses LED panels to produce realistic background landscapes for television or movie sequences driven by video game engines. The site, road closures, location costs, permits, weather, set construction, and space rental will no longer be necessary for production.
With the help of technology, Singapore has a rare chance to get over some of its physical constraints, like the lack of suitable locations for on-location filming and room for large sets.
The ability of the storytellers to reproduce historical sites or any other environment will allow them to generate content that was previously impossible. This will revolutionise the creative process of storytelling.
The adoption of virtual production by the media sector is further encouraged by the strong signals emanating from international media giants that this technology will be widely employed in the creation of movies and television shows and will become the standard in the next years.
To strengthen capabilities in virtual production and ensure that the media companies and talent can keep up with international production methods to remain competitive, IMDA will pursue a two-pronged strategy to prepare the media sector for the future.
The National Film and Television School (NFTS) in the UK has collaborated with IMDA to adapt the school’s Certificate in Virtual Production course to the requirements of the sector to train media professionals to use this technology.
From December 2022 to April 2023, fifteen professors, trainers, and media professionals from Singapore will participate in virtual lectures and undergo hands-on training at NFTS’s virtual production facilities.
Over the course of the following 12 months, several masterclasses and workshops given by professionals from the business will be offered. A Singapore-based firm that specialises in developing immersive experiences, held a display to exhibit how virtual production can enhance imaginative storytelling.
Hands-on demonstrations will be given by guest speakers from virtual production leaders. They will discuss and explore best practices in the workflow to inventive ways to use different technology in storytelling.
Local businesses can also test out virtual production to realise their creative ideas for brief pieces of content, such as music videos, short films, and brand advertisements, among others. Companies can submit their suggested content concepts from now until February 15, 2023.
The capacity to best utilise virtual production technologies to realise a project’s creative vision will be taken into consideration while evaluating proposals.
Additionally, IMDA is working to organise an industry challenge with an internationally renowned gaming company. This challenge will encourage organisations to experiment with and use the cutting-edge real-time 3D creation tool developed by this gaming company. Currently, the aforementioned tool powers globally popular video games.
Teams whose concepts are shortlisted will receive personalised coaching and training from the gaming company. In addition, they will receive prize money from IMDA to assist with content creation.
Since virtual production technology has advanced in recent years, the country is now able to produce visual effects in real-time without building actual sets, thereby overcoming the constraints of scale, complexity, and space.
The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) recently announced that a PolyU-supported start-up has successfully developed the Nano Multi-rings Defocus Incorporated Lens for controlling the progression of myopia (or short-sightedness).
The start-up collaborated with the State Key Laboratory of Ultra-precision Machining Technology (The Hong Kong Polytechnic University) (SKL-UPMT) and the School of Optometry of PolyU to create the new solution by integrating DISC technology and Ultra-precision Nano Multi-rings Machining Technology, offering children and adolescents a convenient, non-invasive and effective option to delay myopia progression.
PolyU holds the patents for both DISC technology and Ultra-precision Nano Multi-rings Machining Technology. The launch of the Nano Multi-rings Defocus Incorporated Lens signifies the University’s long-term commitment to driving research and innovation and its continuous effort in facilitating knowledge transfer and research commercialisation by supporting cutting-edge technology start-ups.
PolyU’s School of Optometry invented the novel DISC technology, which is proven to retard the myopia progression of children by 60%. The method produces a clear image on the retina and a defocused or blurred image in front of the retina simultaneously, enabling children to have clear vision while controlling the development of myopia. Based on this technology, the DISC-SH soft contact lens was introduced in 2018.
The Ultra-precision Nano Multi-rings Machining Technology, developed by SKL-UPMT, merges advanced optics design, ultra-precision machining and ultra-precision measurement technologies, and ultra-precision mould-making to apply DISC technology in spectacle lens production. By employing an ultra-precision process, the new spectacle lens provides added comfort for wearers, while offering more stable vision. The non-invasive design also makes it more suitable for children of different ages.
The Visiting Chair Professor of the School of Optometry of PolyU and Co-founder of the start-up noted that the partnership with SKL-UPMT and the School of Optometry to launch the new Nano Multi-rings Defocus Incorporated Lens resulted in a breakthrough in DISC technology. This initiative helps address the spiralling myopia problem among children, especially in markets with a relatively high ratio of myopes such as Hong Kong, Singapore and mainland China.
The Professor of the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering and Director of SKL-UPMT at PolyU stated that ultra-precision machining technology is a multi-disciplinary advanced manufacturing technology, which is the backbone of crucial industries like optometry, semiconductors, advanced optics, aerospace, energy, biomedical and new materials development.
He noted that SKL-UPMT is at the forefront of the development and application of technologies and have a proven track record in designing and implementing new methods, process, systems and facilities in ultra-precision machining and ultra-precision measurement.
The locally developed Ultra-precision Nano Multi-rings Machining Technology was extended to fine-tune and manufacture optometric products and will continue to create new technologies and solutions for diverse industries to benefit society. In doing so, Hong Kong and mainland China’s competence and strategic advantages in design and advanced manufacturing will be furthered, he said.
The Nano Multi-rings Defocus Incorporated Lens is expected to be rolled out in Hong Kong and mainland China soon. The company will continue collaborating with PolyU to develop new myopia control products based on DISC technology to protect the vision health of children and adolescents.
Founded by PolyU’s professor and alumni, the start-up has received financial support from the PolyU Micro Fund and the PolyU Tech Launchpad Fund. In 2018, the company secured a licence from PolyU for commercialising DISC technology, which the start-up manufactures and distributes DISC lenses at its authorised optometric clinics and fitting centres.