According to a recent report, the citizens of Malaysia may soon have a national digital ID, according to the Communications and Multimedia Minister.
The minister said that his ministry was looking to develop this “platform of trust” in cyberspace to eliminate elements of fraud and cheating. He stated that a plan for a national digital ID is being formulated. This digital ID is not meant to replace the current form of identity verification which is a compulsory identity card for Malaysian citizens aged 12 and above, nor would it be mandatory for everyone, he added.
The news was announced at the launch of the Malaysiakini e-commerce summit in Malaysia recently.
The minister added that a national digital ID, which is likely to be out by the middle 2019, was meant to provide a “verifiable platform of trust”, citizens, upon application to join a certain organisation, would be asked for a photocopy or image of their MyKad.
The minister made it clear that is not an example of trust nor is it ‘verifiable’. Comparatively, this is what a national digital ID can offer: citizens could apply to be a member of that organisation by registering your application using the national digital ID. This would be a trusted and verifiable platform, the minister noted.
With e-commerce poised to become the largest retail channel in the world by 2021, the minister said there was a need for such an ID.
Upon looking into the complaints pertaining to e-commerce and mobile phone scams, there is a significant likelihood of fraud and cheating. Verifying the national digital ID would help to ensure a reduction in the scope of such crimes.
The national digital ID project will be a co-operation between his ministry, the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) and Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC).
The minister explained that while MDEC has vast experience in the area, it will be bringing in other stakeholders. He added that to ensure the legality of the creation of this national digital ID, the ministry would study various pieces of existing legislation, including the Personal Data Protection Act 2010.
According to the minister, possessing the national digital ID would enable Malaysians to enjoy numerous benefits. Moreover, a national digital ID will be an integral and crucial platform for the digital government initiative.
It was noted that the government or its agencies can deliver targeted subsidies efficiently via an e-Wallet account that has been registered using the national digital ID.
In an immediate response, MDEC chief executive officer said that the agency was supportive of the initiative. In a tweet, the officer stated that the digital ID card would be a key enabler for unlocking tech entrepreneurship and drive digital adoption. She stated that MCMC, the ministry and MDEC would drive this, with input and participation from industry players.
This is the second time Malaysia is looking into creating such a platform. In 2011, the previous administration the 1Malaysia email project that was to form the basis of a national digital ID, part of the Economic Transformation Programme (ETP).
The 1Malaysia email project was a government initiative to provide a unique and official email account and ID for Malaysians and would allow them to receive statements, bills and notices from the government.
The RMB50 million contract was awarded to tech firm but faltered after it was revealed that the company was in the danger of being delisted because of financial irregularities. The project was also supposed to include a web portal as a one-stop centre for accessing government services and making payments.
However, hope springs new with the national digital ID initiative.
Slips, trips, and falls (STF) are the leading source of severe injuries in the workplace. Daily, over a million workers across the world suffer injuries from slips and trips, which are the most frequent causes. Early identification of STF risks is essential for improving workplace safety and health, especially in industries such as construction, maritime, manufacturing, transportation, and storage.
Researchers from the National University of Singapore’s (NUS) Department of Biomedical Engineering have collaborated with an NUS start-up to develop a smart insole that can track workplace STFs in real time. It is the first of its kind that can detect a person’s balance. The insole enables companies to identify the location of an incident and highlight STF risk areas so that appropriate measures can be taken to minimise these hazards. The insole can also be custom fitted where necessary through foot scanning and 3D printing production.
According to a statement by NUS, the smart insole uses sensors to monitor foot pressure and an inertial measurement unit sensor to measure changes in motion. When an STF occurs, the body will initially try to maintain balance by exerting pressure on the feet to break the STF. The smart insole identifies these changes in pressure exerted by the feet, and a person’s orientation, to determine if an STF has occurred.
These pressure and motion changes due to an STF are then recorded and measured in real-time to generate balance profiles of different users. This will help employers assess which workers are more suitable for various tasks. Additionally, falls from height can be detected by the smart insole as they have distinct velocity profiles compared to falls on level ground.
Data collected by the smart insole can be easily accessed by employees through a mobile application and by company management through a dashboard. The digitisation of slips, trips, and falls incidents leads to more prompt reporting and increased transparency, eliminating the need for workers or safety officers to submit manual reports.
An official from the NUS start-up explained that STFs are significant cost drivers for most companies due to a loss of productivity, medical expenses, and administrative costs. The smart insole will reduce human and financial costs before serious accidents happen.
Apart from monitoring and reporting STFs, the smart insole recognises everyday activities like walking, standing, and sitting. This enables employers to detect potentially hazardous actions like when a worker should be walking instead of running, and evaluate a worker’s sense of balance by measuring the centre of pressure.
The researchers were awarded the Maritime Innovation and Technology-STARTUP Grant by the Maritime Port Authority of Singapore in May 2022 for prototype development and test-bedding of the smart insole for worker safety. They are collaborating with the Workplace Safety and Health Institute and Association of Singapore Maritime Industries to upgrade the smart insole for the maritime sector.
The statement noted that over time, the data collected from the smart insoles worn by workers, along with other worker-related metrics, can be used to implement best workplace practices on safety and health. The team is also looking into future applications and commercialisation of the smart insole to reduce STFs in construction, aviation, and manufacturing.
The Ministry of Communication and Informatics (Kominfo) will organise the Digital Leadership Academy (DLA) Training Programme (US) in conjunction with Stanford University in California. Hary Budiarto, the Ministry of Communication and Informatics’ Human Resources Research and Development Agency chairman, declared that the collaboration would add to the list of cooperating world-class colleges.
The DLA programme was initially a collaboration between eight international campuses, including the National University of Singapore (NUS), Harvard University, Oxford University, Tsinghua University, Cornell University, Imperial College London, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the University of Cambridge.
“We have partnered with eight foreign universities, and this year we are exploring a partnership with Stanford University,” he spoke at a press conference for the Kominfo Digital Talent Provision Programme at the Ministry of Communication and Information Media Centre in Central Jakarta.
According to Hary, the DLA Programme intends to include all government officials, State-Owned Enterprises (BUMN), Regional-Owned Enterprises (BUMD), private enterprises (CEO level), and digital company owners as members. Training for regional leaders, including governors, mayors, and regents, is provided by Ministry Kominfo in partnership with the Ministry of Home Affairs’ HR Development Agency (BPSDM Kemendagri). DLA will hold training and visits in 2023.
The initiative will bring 20 regional leaders to South Korea this year for international benchmarking. The Ministry of Home Affairs will define the qualifications for regional heads. They visited Singapore in 2022, and 20 regional leaders were present.
The Ministry of Kominfo, on the other hand, developed digital competence from beginner to intermediate levels for students, graduate students, and the community. The Professional Academy, Fresh Graduate Academy, Talent Scouting Academy, Vocational School Graduate Academy, Government Transformation Academy, Thematic Academy, and Digital Entrepreneurship Academy are all part of the DTS Programme.
For the Professional Academy training subject, The Ministry of Kominfo targets participants who have at least worked for the past two years. Meanwhile, the Fresh Graduate Academy is designed for recent college grads. The ministry also collaborates with the industry to fulfil its personnel needs. The training programme will continue with open job offers followed by training in a specific field. After that, they participate in apprenticeship or boot camp, after which they can contract employment with the industry.
Participants in the Vocational School Graduate Academy (VSGA) course can obtain an SKKNI-based certification. VSGA is meant for the community, with at least Vocational High School graduates eligible for D1, D2, and D4. The distinction between V FGA and VSGA is that the training is based on the Occupational Map or SKKNI, particularly for SKKNI in the communications, information technology, and telecommunications industries.
Another academy is the Talent Scouting Academy, which is meant for students as part of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Research, and Technology’s drive for the Freedom to Learn – Independent Campus (MBKM) programme. We provide students with training, after which they return to college and can convert numerous credits, typically 10-20 credits. Our goal for the Talent Scouting Programme in 2023 is to have roughly 5,000 students.
Thematic Academies are dedicated to specific communities throughout Indonesia, such as migrant workers, individuals with disabilities, women, children, and others.
Meanwhile, the Digital Entrepreneurship Academy training programme aims to prepare students to become digital entrepreneurs. There are four curricula in the DEA training, ranging from addressing the foundations of using digital platforms to how to manage marketplaces to employing data science, big data, or AI (Artificial Intelligence) to establish business production.
We also train ASN through the Government Transformation Academy, which provides training to make them more proficient in executing public services. All these DTS training sessions are accessible to the community, students, and workers; all required is to register to participate in this training online or offline.
In the context of World Safer Internet Day, the Deputy Minister of Information and Communications (MIC), Nguyen Huy Dung, highlighted the crucial role of a safe Internet in advancing progress in Vietnam. This year’s World Safer Internet Day was themed, “Want to talk about it? Making space for safe conversations about life online”.
According to MIC, over 175,000 children worldwide access the Internet daily and experience both its advantages and potential hazards. Providing children with knowledge about Internet safety and equipping them with the tools to protect themselves has become a global concern.
World Safer Internet Day aims to promote the safe use of digital technology and create positive effects on children and young people. It strives to encourage the youth, parents, teachers, police, and technology companies to work together to develop and implement initiatives that contribute to a safer online environment.
World Safer Internet Day was initiated in 1999. By 2004, many countries had joined the initiative to raise public awareness of cyber threats. The day aims to promote joining hands to fight threats from the internet, bringing people around the globe a safer online environment.
Last year, the Vietnam Network for Child Online Protection debuted its website to keep children safe online, where users can report incidents of child abuse. The Authority of Information Security, which is run by MIC, developed and deployed the website. The network is linked to 24 units, including representatives of the Ministry of Labour, Invalids, and Social Affairs, the Ministry of Public Security, the Ministry of Education and Training, and the Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism. Other representatives are from agencies, enterprises, and domestic and foreign organisations that specialise in child protection on the Internet.
As OpenGov Asia reported, in the ‘Opinion Expression’ section of the website users, including children, can give their ideas and suggestions, which state agencies can consider when drafting new policies and schemes. The ‘News’ section includes updated information about Internet safety for children in the country and across the world as well as the new technologies developed to keep children safe online. Meanwhile, the ‘Tools’ section offers useful suggestions and software for young users to have healthy interactions online.
Apart from contacting the Child Affairs Department’s hotline through the portal, users can also send child abuse reports. The Vietnam Network for Child Online Protection then verifies the reports and takes appropriate action. The website was launched as part of a programme approved by the Prime Minister to protect and assist children in healthy and creative interactions on the Internet. It targets preventing and handling activities that take advantage of the cyber environment to abuse children as well as promoting and maintaining a healthy Internet environment.
The website contributes to an ecosystem of useful domestic apps and products to help children learn and be entertained online. So far, the programme has introduced various initiatives, tasks, and breakthrough solutions to exploit advanced technologies like big data to collect data and deliver early warnings for any potential content that violates laws or is not suitable for children.
In 2022, Vietnam’s digital technology industry reached a total revenue of about US$ 148 billion. The revenue from Internet security products and services in 2022 hit about VND 4.85 trillion (US$ 205.5 million), 26% higher than that of 2021. Domestic information security enterprises have mastered over 95% of information security products and solutions. Many new technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), blockchain, and virtual reality technology (AR/VR) have been applied to ‘Made in Vietnam’ information security products.
A partner company of Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Corporation (HKSTP), which is a leading surgical robotics company, recently signed a high-level Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with a longstanding clinical partner and a multispecialty private hospital in Hong Kong.
The Memorandum of Understanding will enhance the partnership between the parties, with a focus on advancing patient care, promoting technological innovations in healthcare, and fostering a culture of innovation in Hong Kong.
The two parties have a long-standing friendship, and this Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) strengthens and harmonises their partnership. Over the course of a three-year consortium, they will collaborate on various significant activities, such as exchanging scientific knowledge gained from clinical validation studies of the latest surgical robots, promoting development, and fostering new technological innovations. The goal is to transform human-assisted surgery into precise, automated solutions, improving patients’ quality of life.
The MoU was signed by the CEO of the robotics company and the CEO of the hospital. In attendance were the Secretary for Innovation, Technology and Industry; the Founder, and Chairman of the company; the Chairman of Hong Kong Automation Technology Council and Associate Director (Innovation) of a hotel group in Hong Kong as well as the Director of Peritoneal Malignancy Treatment Centre at the hospital.
The Founder of the HKSTP partner company stated that the company is committed to revolutionising surgical technologies and elevating patient care in Hong Kong and the Greater Bay Area. The support the Hong Kong government, through funding programs like the Enterprise Support Scheme and access to advanced facilities at the Science Park, has enabled PRHK to enhance its medical and surgical systems and cultivate skilled professionals. This partnership holds great potential for expanding the use of surgical robots for the benefit of patients.
Meanwhile, the CEO of the hospital noted that partnership provides both parties with a strategic platform to foster the development of technological innovations in healthcare. Drawing on the tech company’s outstanding experience in surgical robot development and implementation, we anticipate contributing to the successful transformation of our joint clinical research efforts into healthcare solutions that will offer improved care, greater precision, and more advanced options for patients.
FDA Clears SIRIUS Endoscope System for Use
SIRIUS Endoscope System, the flagship product of the robotics company, achieved 510k clearance from the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in December 2022, demonstrating its safety and efficacy in use, and meeting world-class quality standards.
The CEO of the company announced that the FDA 510K clearance and the clinical data acquired through the partnership with the hospital will facilitate the company’s ability to advance its medical robotics technology in Hong Kong and the Asia Pacific region. The company’s status as a prominent leader in the development of innovative surgical robotics solutions will also be strengthened.
The robotics company is a portfolio company of the Hong Kong Science and Technology Parks Corporation (HKSTP) Venture Fund, which supports promising tech ventures by providing investment and attracting private capital. The Hong Kong Science Park is a hub for over 1,200 cutting-edge innovation and technology companies, including PRHK, in areas like artificial intelligence, robotics, biomedical technology, and more.
The CEO of HKSTP stated that the robotics company has been a consistent part of HKSTP’s ecosystem and a shining example of how research, with the right support, can lead to scalable commercial success. This collaboration represents a major milestone in their quest to improve the utilisation of robotics in healthcare, and they are thrilled to see the company’s continued growth and success.
The robotics company is dedicated to revolutionising the field of minimally invasive surgery through its innovative articulated camera system, providing advanced laparoscopic surgeries with precision, accuracy, and dependability. With the hospital’s expertise, clinical excellence, and top-notch facilities, the company aims to continue improving surgical robot applications for both surgeons and patients.
The Philippine Army (PA) confirmed its intent to digitalise the documentation process. According to PA spokesperson Col. Xerxes Trinidad, the digitalisation project is part of the PA leadership’s attempts to use technology to provide relevant and responsive services to soldiers.
“This digitalisation will assist the PA in expediting the processing of benefits due to meritorious people, particularly our KIA (killed in action), wounded, sick, and retirees,” said PA chief Lt. Gen. Romeo S. Brawner Jr.
At the Army Headquarters in Fort Bonifacio, the PA and technology solutions supplier master’s Stewards Information Technology (MIST) inked a digitalisation agreement under the Office of the Army Adjutant. The office is the repository for all Army officers and troops from commissioning or enlistment until retirement. The signing reaffirmed the agreement between the PA, represented by Army Adjutant Col. Danilo Estraero, and MIST Solutions, Inc., represented by its managing director, Mary Ann Cabal-Soleno.
Last year, PhilSA and the Department of National Defense (DND) signed an agreement to strengthen national security and development activities through Space Science and Technology Applications (SSTA). Before establishing a memorandum of understanding with DND, PhilSA collaborated closely with the defence and security industries.
PhilSA is working hard to safeguard the country’s sovereignty. Currently, the agency works with several AFP divisions to produce satellite data products for maritime domain cognisance, area monitoring, and other satellite operations for defence and security.
PhilSA has been educating the Philippine Navy and Air Force on using satellite pictures and AI for automatic object recognition. It also has a Memorandum of Understanding with the National Coast Watch Centre to improve maritime security through space-enabled technology.
Similarly, the United States has realised the significance of converting technology in the defence sector. As a result, the government has made significant technological advances for its army. It has even used its arm to establish the Cyber National Mission Force, the Department of Defense’s newest subordinate unified command.
The CNMF is the United States military’s joint cyber force entrusted with defending the country in cyberspace through full-spectrum operations encompassing offensive, defensive, and information operations. The classification of CNMF as a sub-unified command acknowledges the organisation’s long-standing purpose of combatting foreign harmful cyber actors, underlines its continuous success in advancing national priorities and formalises its organisational structure.
The army used games, simulators, and 3D training simulations to teach its forces. The United States Air Force has made the KingFish Agile Combat Employment game the capstone exercise for the Air Mobility Command’s Rapid Global Mobility Course 3. (RGMC 3). The game allows students to visualise, learn from, and comprehend the notions of ACE and Multi-Capable Airmen in a more tangible way.
In the meantime, the US Air Force has created a new training platform called the Weapons System Trainer Reconfigurable C-130J flight simulator (WST 12R). The new simulator includes block updates to boost software and hardware capability expansions aimed at improving aircraft flying skills.
These training profiles will be like the flying, weight, and climatic conditions that MAFFS aircrews will encounter on wildfire suppression missions. The new simulator will train aircrews to manage circumstances more effectively and successfully, improving safety and mission success.
The United States Navy developed MRTS 3D (Multipurpose Reconfigurable Training System) as a 3D training simulation that gives an interactive training experience via a multi-touch screen. By boosting achievement and operation readiness, the deployment of MRTS 3D onboard Lincoln aids in meeting future fleet requirements. The simulations immerse Sailors in a three-dimensional world geared to their job requirements.
MRTS 3D offers a variety of software simulations through realistic, virtual training on a variety of platforms. MRTS 3D trainers are intended to be employed on Navy ships in Sailor rate boot camps and pre-deployment group exercises.
Swinburne University of Technology has been awarded a substantial amount of funding, exceeding AU$ 1.1 million, for three projects that are linked to industry as part of the latest allocation of funding from the Australian Research Council’s Linkage Projects initiative.
This funding will allow Swinburne to further advance its research efforts and strengthen its collaborations with industry partners. The projects, which have been selected for funding, will tackle important and relevant challenges facing various industries, and the outcomes of these projects will be expected to have a significant impact on both the academic and business communities.
The three projects will explore innovative solutions for making roads and pavements more sustainable using recycled glass, enhancing Australia’s 5G network, and incorporating new technologies to enhance quality of life in aged care facilities.
The University has achieved an outstanding success rate in the latest round of funding from the Australian Research Council’s Linkage Projects initiative. With a 100% success rate, compared to the overall success rate of 42%, Swinburne’s research efforts have been recognized and rewarded.
In addition to the Federal Government funding, contributions from partner organizations have further increased the value of the projects to over $2.5 million. This level of funding will allow Swinburne to tackle complex challenges and drive innovative solutions in collaboration with industry partners.
The Swinburne’s Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research stated that these three projects demonstrate Swinburne’s strength in working with industry to develop practical solutions to real-world problems. Their 100 per cent success rate in this round is a testament to the quality of work being produced by the Swinburne community in partnership with industry.
In partnership with two firms in Australia, a research team led by Professor Arul Arulrajah is developing green ground improvement technology using biocemented recycled glass columns.
This project expands upon Swinburne’s expertise in using recycled grass for constructing new roads and sidewalks, thereby reducing waste in landfills, decreasing greenhouse gas emissions, and discovering innovative ways to utilize glass waste commercially. The Swinburne research team also includes Associate Professor Annan Zhou, Professor Jian Chu, Professor Suksun Horpibulsuk and Kanagesperan Verumandy.
Meanwhile, Associate Professor Qiang He and Professor Yun Yang are continuing their pioneering work on supercharging Australia’s transition to 5G with a new project with AIBUILD. The objective of the project is to reduce the costs and increase the safety for software providers transitioning to 5G by creating innovative models and methods to enhance multi-access edge computing (MEC), a crucial technology that enables quicker 5G network speeds.
The team, which includes Swinburne’s Dr Feifei Chen and the CEO of a firm that helps businesses develop and integrate web technologies, artificial intelligence, virtual reality and augmented reality into their business model to improve operation, are also working on an ARC funded project to support an innovative 5G-enabled AR/VR learning platform.
Finally, Professor Sonja Pedell and Professor Leon Sterling will work with not-for-profit aged care provider and an edu-tech company to effectively bring technology into aged care. The project aims to enhance the quality of care and promote fairness in technology utilisation by jointly designing services and plans that encourage technology adoption among residents.
Nowadays, researchers can create and manufacture advanced materials in only a few years instead of decades. Thanks to computer assistance in a field pioneered at MIT. These sophisticated materials even have been used by mobile phone and space companies in the United States with their revolutionary products.
With a five-year US$7.2 million grant from the Office of Naval Research, eight MIT professors, including one of the area’s inventors, hope to make the domain even more powerful. The MIT researchers will set their sights on steel “because it’s still the material [the world] has studied the lengthiest, so we have the profound fundamental knowledge of its properties,” the principal project investigator Gregory B. Olson, the Thermo-Calc Professor of Practice in the MIT Department of Materials Science and Engineering (DMSE) elaborated.
These fundamental qualities are critical to a growing steel database that determines everything from chemical compositions to the order of process temperatures to design new high-performance steels. The research is part of President Barack Obama’s Materials Genome Initiative’s second phase (MGI), unveiled in 2011.
The MGI is creating “a fundamental database of the factors that drive the assembly of the structures of materials,” similar to how the Human Genome Project “directs the creation of the structures of life,” Olson explained.
The underlying database format for materials is known as “CALPHAD,” devised at MIT in the 1950s and commercialised by the Thermo-Calc firm, which funds Olson’s professorship. According to the MGI website, the goal is to use the MGI database to find, create, and deploy innovative materials twice as fast and at a fraction of the cost of existing methods.
Nobody realised whether computers could facilitate the design of novel materials in 1985, as per Olson. However, he and his colleagues eventually demonstrated that they could. As a result, cybersteels now have many uses, including 3D-printed steels that revolutionise how naval aircraft components are built.
QuesTek, Olson’s materials design firm, has already employed computational design technologies to qualify cybersteels in naval aviation elements. The Naval Research Office is also interested in producing nonmagnetic steels for ship hulls.
“Submarine detection is dependent on magnetism, so if you can remove the magnetism, you have a new stealth capability,” said Olson, who co-led computational materials design with late MIT professor Morris Cohen in 1985.
Research to go beyond
Antoine Allanore, DMSE professor of metallurgy, will lead the MIT cybersteels project, which will include work on everything from broadening our understanding of molten steels to economic modelling of the new steels, which Elsa A. Olivetti, the Esther and Harold E. Edgerton Career Development Professor in DMSE, will lead.
Another critical area of research is the boundaries between the tiny grains that comprise steel. While the high volume thermodynamics of steel are well documented, “we need to make progress on the thermodynamics of interfaces” — the grain boundaries Olson explained.
- Cem Tasan, the Thomas B. King Assistant Professor of Metallurgy in DMSE, and James M. LeBeau, an associate professor in DMSE, will undertake the experimental work. While the theoretical grain boundaries discussion will be done by Christopher A. Schuh, the Danae and Vasilis Salapatas Professor of Metallurgy in DMSE, Jeffrey C. Grossman, the Morton and Claire Goulder and Family Professor in Environmental Systems and head of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering.
Olson and Professor David M. Parks of the Department of Mechanical Engineering will collaborate on early-stage simulations of steel toughening mechanisms. Simulations have always been employed in the last stages of design.
Olson is optimistic about the future. “We have [already] succeeded beyond what I had imagined this technology would be. It’s incredible to see it take off.”