FiWare

ETSI launches new Group on Context Information Management: the role of FIWARE

 APIs, Blog, FIWARE Foundation, GEs, GSMA, IoT, NGSI, OASC, SmartCities  Comments Off on ETSI launches new Group on Context Information Management: the role of FIWARE
Jan 132017
 
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ETSIthe European Telecommunications Standards Institute, has announced the creation of a new Industry Specification Group on cross-sector Context Information Management (ISG CIM) for IoT-enabled Smart Cities and also other verticals including Smart Industry and Smart Agriculture.

The group will focus its activities on developing the specifications for a common Context Information Management (CIM) API, Data Publication platforms and standard Data Models, in order to achieve and improve cross-sector interoperalibilty for smart applications, with FIWARE NGSI as starting point. This blogpost offers further information on the role of FIWARE within the works of this new group.

As CIM API, the abstract NGSI 9 and 10 interface specifications from OMA will be the starting point, with a RESTful binding for the protocol based on the FIWARE NGSIv2 API developed under the FIWARE initiative. Specifications of this binding are expected to evolve in order to bring support to Linked Data using JSON-LD for representing the semantics of context information and their interrelationships.

As the press release by ETSI states, “Data without context are meaningless. Every sensor measurement, every entry in a database, every tweet sent and every webcam video watched has its own context.” Information will not be really useful without its own context; a context that should be published and made available with the data. The ISG CIM will specify open standards for the context information management layer that accesses and updates information coming from different sources (IoT networks and information systems) thus enabling to implement a context-aware behaviour for smart applications and extending its interoperability.

“With the rapid development of technologies such as Big Data, semantic web, complex workflow or autonomous decision making, the need for interoperable context information is becoming huge”, says Lindsay Frost, convenor of ETSI ISG CIM.

Lindsay Frost explains how the newly launched group will aid to overcome this problem: “The ISG CIM will specify protocols running ‘on top’ of IoT platforms and allowing exchange of data together with its context, this includes what is described by the data, what was measured, when, where, by what, the time of validity, ownership, and others. That will dramatically extend the interoperability of applications, helping smart cities to integrate their existing services and enable new third-party services.”



These will be the topics addressed by ISG CIM in order to ensure interoperability of independent SW implementations, including Open Source implementations,

  • Definition of a standard API for Context Information Management, enabling close to real-time update and access to information coming from many different sources (not only IoT). Such an API will enable applications to perform updates on context, register context providers which can be queried to get updates on context, query information on current and historic context information and subscribe for receiving notifications on context changes.
     
  • Specifications to be fulfilled by Data Publication Platforms supporting open data publication, data privacy and/or authorization of access, including enablers for multi-party access contracts will be considered.
     
  • Cross-domain Context Information Models that will deal with the definition of the models that are common to several of the domains being targeted, together with the meta models, definition languages and processes needed for the specification, curation, publication and evolution of Context Information Models will be defined and applied.
     
  • Smart Cities Information Models, where the specific models for the Smart Cities domain will be defined.
     
  • Information Models targeting other specific domains besides Smart Cities (for example but not limited to Smart Agrifood, Smart Industry) will also be considered.


The starting members of the new Industry Specification Group (ISG) are Easy Global Market, IMEC, NEC, Orange and Telefonica. ETSI has initiated this new group together with the organisation Open & Agile Smart Cities (OASC). Soon, the FIWARE Foundation will also join the ISG as new ETSI member.  Beyond the initial focus of Smart Cities, the cross-sector approach will be transferable to applications developed for other vertical domains, such as Smart Agriculture and Smart Industry. With the goal of interoperate and to re-use as much existing work and knowledge as possible, the group will work closely with the ETSI SmartM2M technical committee and with oneM2M, the global standards initiative for M2M and the IoT (Internet of Things) of which ETSI is a founding member.

The ISG CIM work responds to the EU’s rolling plan on ICT standardisation which is part of its Digital Single Market strategy.
The creation of this group leverages promising results of the collaboration between FIWARE and other relevant actors such as TM Forum or GSMA.


The first meeting of the ISG CIM is planned to take place at the ETSI premises in Sophia Antipolis, France, on 9-10 February 2017. Regarding FIWARE, by July 2017, a preliminary version of the CIM API is expected. The final version of its specifications will be developed by November 2017. And, by September 2017, the first version of the standard Data Models would be available, thanks to the previous work in projects like CitySDK, or the joining effort of FIWARE and a group of OASC cities in collaboration with GSMA, regarding the definition of harmonized Data Models. This partnership has produced a first batch of Data Models that are fully compatible with NGSI.

Participation in the cross-sector group is open to all ETSI members as well as organizations who are not members, subject to signing ISG Agreements. For information on how to participate please contact ISGsupport@etsi.org
The full list of members and participants in ISG CIM is available at: https://portal.etsi.org/TBSiteMap/CIM/CIMmembershiplist.aspx

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FundingBox is joining the FIWARE Foundation

 Accelerator Programme, Blog, FIWARE Foundation  Comments Off on FundingBox is joining the FIWARE Foundation
Dec 232016
 
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FundingBox, the largest “go to” platform to win public funding has decided to join the FIWARE Foundation as one of its Gold members.

Fundingbox believes the FIWARE initiative has been the best initiative launched by the EC since Erasmus. FIWARE has contributed to start creating a truly European tech startups ecosystem. FundigBox was partner in two of the FIWARE Accelerators, INCENSe and IMPACT, that contributed to the transfer of new technology into the market thus setting up a community of hundreds of successful companies. The cascade funding approach of the FI-PPP in its phase 3, distributing funding among companies through a group of accelerators for them to select and support companies in their technology adoption, has made this possible. FundingBox have become the experts on identifying, obtaining and distributing cascade funding through www.fundingbox.com

Thanks to the FIWARE Accelerator Program we have supported a total of more than 100 startups with equity free funding and mentoring. The top 10 companies have then raised closed to 30M€ of private investments.

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We have been selected by the EC as the reference FIWARE Accelerator and we intend to keep doing this with our new Program, Impact Growth, where we will support a group of 28 companies with 125 k euros to keep investing in FIWARE technology.

All this experience and the community set up around the FIWARE Technology is now embodied in the FIWARE Foundation, and FundingBox wants to contribute in making this even a bigger success.

Together with the FIWARE Foundation, at FundingBox we intend to replicate this approach in other initiatives related to the Digital Single Market, in which we are having and intensive role. This is the case of the Digital Innovation Hubs (DIHs), which aim at helping SMEs to master their digital transformation. Through the four DIHs is which are present and our access to its network, we believe that the FIWARE experience can be an important added value, acting as a showcase that will help traditional companies accelerate their transformation, offering them vision, technology and funding. 

Dec 192016
 
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It is a joy to be entitled to write something like this: the 1st FIWARE Summit was a complete success!
And it is not only something that can be done… it’s a must! This is the appropriate time to point out who is responsible for the Summit surpassing our most optimistic predictions: you.
We would like to thank you as part of the FIWARE Open Community for making our first Summit an occasion to remember. We are still reviewing the main assets resulting from the event and we are also focusing on what should be improved for our future events.

At this moment, we can already share some figures: during the 3 days of the event, the Trade Fairs and Congress Center in Málaga gathered 300 participants from 18 countries. The summit comprised 39 tech sessions and 13 business sessions, with the participation of no less than 37 speakers and 32 technical experts. Additionally, 11 exhibitors were showcasing their powered by FIWARE solutions.

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Keynote speakers, how-to sessions, working meetings, a developers’ primer the first day, high-level panels on each one of the main verticals and programmes around FIWARE… and coffee breaks, lunches and an evening networking event with food, drinks and music! The 1st FIWARE Summit intended to be the most comprehensive experience possible for all and each one of the attendees.

We had the pleasure to be joined by the local and regional authorities, namely the Mayor of the City of Málaga, Francisco de la Torre Prados, and the representative of the Government of Andalucía, José Sánchez Maldonado (Regional Council for Work, Industry and Trade). Both of them spoke at the opening session, emphasizing the importance of the Summit for a smart city like Málaga and for a region that has always bet on the open technology, like Andalucía is.

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The FIWARE Foundation was represented by Ulrich Ahle (CEO), Stefano de Panfilis (COO), Juan José Hierro (CTO) and Hubert Tardieu (Atos CEO Advisor) as chairman of the FIWARE Foundation Board of Directors, also including Rosalía Simón (Smart Cities Director at Telefónica), Patrice Slupowski (VP Digital Innovation at Orange) and Dario Avallone (R&D Director at Engineering).

In the closing session of the event, Ahle reviewed the main announcements that were made at the Summit. We will be going over all of them in detail, through a series of individual posts. But let’s summarize now what the different initiatives and programmes were presenting.

In brief, FIWARE announced:

  • The FIWARE Accelerate programme gets renewed, with two spin-off projects: IMPACT Growth and Frontier Cities 2. With more than 5M € to be distributed supporting powered by FIWARE projects, the new calls are announced to be open by the beginning of 2017. Frontier Cities 2 will be focusing on developing solutions for the urban communities, while IMPACT Growth will be accelerating startups across different sectors, including Smart Cities, Smart Manufacturing, Smart Agrifood and Smart Content Verticals.
     
  • The FIWARE Mundus Committee will continue promoting the usage of FIWARE and the set-up of the FIWARE ecosystems at global level. FIWARE Mundus will seek to enlarge international membership, explore common business opportunities and foster FIWARE nodes and FIWARE instances installations around the Globe. With Jacques Magen (InterInnov, FI-GLOBAL) as its provisional chairman, the Mundus Committee presented the ongoing initiatives worldwide and the list of action points to be taken in the short and long-term.
     
  • The FIWARE iHub programme, designed to act upon the global FIWARE strategy, but at a local level. With the iHubs as physical meeting points for the community, the programme aims to show the path by example, offering coaching and training for developers and SMEs, organizing hackathons, collaborating with universities, showcasing commercial solutions, etc. Also, the FIWARE Zone initiative was presented, starting with two innovation centers in Málaga and Sevilla.
     
  • The FIWARE Marketplace was launched during the FIWARE Summit, as a tool to help finding out who is offering solutions and services based on our open source technology.  It comprise a list of Powered by FIWARE solutions, FIWARE IoT-ready device manufacturers and providers of both Training and Consultancy/Integration services. The FIWARE Foundation will soon offer professional certifications for FIWARE trainers and certifiers.
     
  • The FIWARE Foundation, that was set in motion by the Core Industry Group members (Atos, Engineering, Orange and Telefónica) is now joined by more Gold and individual members. FundingBox –the public funding platform upholding the IMPACT Growth accelerator–, Smart Cities Lab –the think-tank that is currently running the FIWARE activities undergoing in India– and Zabala Innovation Consultingformerly leading Finodex, the Open Data accelerator– joined as Gold Members. Plus 37 individual members who also have joined the Foundation.
     
  • Finally, the Foundation announced the 2nd FIWARE Summit, to take place in Berlin by the end of May 2017. Save the date in your agendas!

_o3a1922We have published a video overviewing what happened in Málaga. You will find it at the end of this post.
Each one of the activities in the main rooms were recorded in video. The first day developers’ prime and the panels on days 2 and 3 were live-streamed. You can find them now, in a rough edit, on our YouTube channel. Soon, individually edited videos will be shared.
Also, we will be publishing each one of the presentations that were shown at the event. Find them linked on the event’s agenda.

After all this, after all the excitement, the good news and the hard work, it is probably the perfect time to think not only about the FIWARE Community: take a minute now and think about all the people in your life. How did you initially meet? What brought you closer together? From shared interests to specific events, from scheduled activities to casual networking. Each occurrence that build upon the trust, the knowledge, the reciprocity and shared best practices that improves the quality of life within a human ecosystem and make a project thriving and resilient.

Personal relationships are built on a day-by-day basis. And a community like ours is worthing a lot more when it manages to reach new contributors, to convince them to join in and, at the same time, the engagement between present and future members is deepened.
The 1st FIWARE Summit has accomplished to do that, enriching our social capital. And that should mark the biggest difference between having a good… or a great future ahead!

_o3a2577With events like this Summit, the community members will be able to keep creating their own value. The platform will be strengthening. The technology will keep advancing and being adopted. New partnerships will be started and people new to and interested in FIWARE will find a perfect chance to be joining the community, joining our global ecosystem. In Málaga, during each one of the sessions, there was a sense of great attention and the will to participate, to be enhancing the hands-on learning process about FIWARE, thus greatly improving the direct and institutional communication and the relationship within the Open Community, always based on merit, transparency and trust.

For the 2nd FIWARE Summit we are looking forward to offer an even better experience for the community members. So, please, if you were present at the 1st Summit in Málaga or followed it online, or maybe you have a notion about how to improve the involvement and participation for the attendants… just write us! Send an email to the FIWARE Press Office.
We will love to receive your ideas and we are counting on your support to make the encounter in Berlin the perfect place and time to gather and to keep moving forward. Thank you in advance and thank you, again, for making this 1st FIWARE Summit a great success.

Together, we build FIWARE! And the best is yet to come.

Smart Cities Lab joined the FIWARE Foundation today as Gold Member

 FIWARE Foundation  Comments Off on Smart Cities Lab joined the FIWARE Foundation today as Gold Member
Dec 122016
 
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Why should we talk about FIWARE as a platform? Or even as “the platform for platforms”?

Why does it worth the time, to investigate and to invest in FIWARE?

From the techies' perspective, focusing primarily on the technology, the FIWARE platform means somehow a catalogue, an instance where you can deploy your solution. It means a repository, a set of components, a development kit.
But, if there are other things out there, that feel and look like the components and APIs provided by FIWARE… why the developers should investigate deeper? Why they should try FIWARE?

Business wise, a platform is a club, a place where stakeholders meet to collaborate. Potentially, platforms organized as brokers are providing value to the multiple sides. FIWARE started as a public-private partnership, developing first a feasible architecture and a technology, aiming to find a suitable business model. So, why joining this club? Where is the business?

We experienced that potential interested parties don't got it quite right on the first shot – they struggled, even when they were trying hard. FIWARE is not a the kind of product that comes with prize tag. It could be regarded as "something" virtual and, when it arrived, it was not widely established yet. However, today, it is tested and is being used in many domains and across 37 countries. Now, after years of work –sometimes under a stormy weather– we can say that the concept have became a reality.

However and fortunately, FIWARE is a platform comprising and offering both perspectives: the business' nurturing and the technology ready to use. And even more!

FIWARE is the glue, what is connecting the dots. Technically, it is a portfolio of APIs enabling the use of generic software components, providing the specifications, describing how to connect and to access the platform using a diversity of software modules. But the ecosystem using the technology is equally important. Within the FIWARE community you can meet early adopters, who are eager to proof a concept: that the collaboration and the cooperation are essential is we want to win this game. If we want to innovate fast and to support modern economies on scale.

FIWARE is for open minded people. It is a gift, an open-source and royalty free technology, free to use. It is designed to be used and reuse, presenting key quality attributes as the modifiability, modularity and portability, in order to support interoperability. The modular concept guarantees innovation, keeping it at a fast pace. FIWARE is not a monolithic structure. It is designed to support its own improvement and to ease the incorporation of new modules.

The governance model is also based on participation, on a participatory power. Not only the IPR rights are saved and protected via the Berlin based FIWARE Foundation. The stakeholders have established ambitious plans to scale up and to foster the adoption of the technology in the domains of Agriculture, Manufacturing and Smart IoT Cities, to name just a few topics.

logo-auf-weissNow, Smart Cities Lab have joined the FIWARE Foundation as Gold Member, having announced it in Hamburg, on 12th Dec 2016, by Olaf-Gerd Gemein, Co- Founder of Smart City Lab.

Smart Cities Lab, as a Think Tank and a Center of Excellence, was established in 2013, in Hamburg. It has been assembling and offering an iHUB since 2015, in our co-working space. Supporting 96 teams in the acceleration phase, Smart Cities Lab participated in the uptake of FIWARE in Germany and in several other European countries.
We have been building our FIWARE network also in the US (Portland, San José, San Francisco, Austin, Virginia Beach and Washington) and Canada (Edmonton, Montreal, Waterford and Toronto). And, in 2016, we started our activities in India, where we opened a first Lab in Mumbai and established a second one recently, located in Jabalpur.
Heading to 2017, we are on the run to join forces with several more communities, in order to facilitate the close collaboration between the Labs and our other partners, within public-private partnerships in Pune, Jaipur, Ahmadabad and Bhubaneswar, while we keep advancing in the US.

“FIWARE meets all the requirements for IoT in cities, and even beyond. Its the platform of choice, and many Indian Academic Institutes and clusters recognized the potential thus planning to adopts FIWARE and OpenStack to support the City as a platform to became smart“, says co-founder and CTO of Smart Cities Lab, Eng. Rahul Tomar, during the inauguration of FIWARE Lab in Jabalpur in November 2016.

We opened the first FIWARE Lab in Germany –Cebit 2015–  and supported the second in 2016, also providing a full range of commercial services and a portfolio of solutions for Smart Cities, IoT, Agriculture and Manufacturing.

Supporting the FI-PPP, we also initiated crowd-sourced Quality Assessment activities, which finally resulted in the advanced QA system.
Being part of our agenda for 2016, we have already activated several projects, in order to provide new generic enablers for IoT; we have started cluster activities for an advanced  federation of labs; and we hace put in place a new innovative academy concept, coming soon. We are participating in several domain specific and international standardization activities around Smart Cities and IoT.

FIWARE and blockchain, and the importance of FIWARE as a concept.

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We are at the tipping point: the people is getting more likely to trust open source versus proprietary software; almost anyone is more likely to join the crowd as a collaborator than as an intermediary broker or provider (usually a gatekeeper!); we are all more likely to choose a crowd-backed solution, instead of a single vendor. Blockchain enables the rise of crowdsourced trust, making possible to challenge untrusted organizations.

FIWARE and Blockchain are sisters, born from the same hope: to regain self-efficacy and autonomy. Politicians all over the world recognize FIWARE as the European answer to the occupation of a common ground by monopolists – and by too much successful ones!
That is a similar hope to the one we all have, facing the disruption to come within the old Economy. Even today, a money transfer from Germany to India for 295 Euro, costs 45 Euro in fees. We all have lost faith in the traditional financial systems, with a lot of actors still often acting more or less as pirates. The rise of new technical options within the most recent phase of the digital transformation –the Internet of Everything– presents a core opportunity for FIWARE, both as technology basis and a trustworthy ecosystem.  

“FIWARE is a cake in the middle of a big roundtable— eat what you want, share the cake with your peers and enjoy collaboration”, according to the vision of Olaf-Gerd Gemein, author of this article, Co-Founder of Smart City Lab and Co-Chair of the Steering Board Committee of the Future Internet Public-Private Partnership, which have been facilitating the FIWARE framework.

How to build your product and adopt multiple standards? FIWARE is advancing together with 31 international standardization associations and working groups, presenting a metamodel and several particular contributions, developing concepts and pieces of software that are getting widely accepted as de-facto standards.

Now, its time to enjoy, to harvest the fruits. We had fertilized the ground, we have cared about the seeds. We have struggled with technical challenges and resolved communication issues. Today, we are closer than half there. Now we can scale and innovate, fast.

The FIWARE Foundation is now a reality. And it is hosted in Berlin, Germany. A good choice: it is a place where we will take care and build a warm and cosy nest, encouraging the participation of the German technological community, engaging with the Government and the Industry stakeholders. Supporting the global FIWARE ecosystem.

We have to say a big loud “thank you all, for your efforts”. Personally, we must give a special “thank you!” for the support of the European Commission, in particular to Jesus Villasante, Mario Campolargo and Peter Fatelnig, to name just a few, from DG Connect; to Juanjo Hierro, as the CTO of the Foundation; to the ambitious team of FIWARE Mundus, led by Jacques Magen; and to Ilkka Lakaniemi as President and Pentti Launonen as Chief Secretary, for their patience and pragmatic guidance under all circumstances. They all have had and will have tremendous shares in the success that we can achieve today… and tomorrow.
We take pride in the words “We are with FIWARE!”. And we are looking forward to the fruitful years ahead, building the global Smart Cities labs!

Olaf-Gerd Gemein. Co-Founder of Smart City Lab,
Hamburg, Mumbai, London (@oggemein / fiware.in).

1st FIWARE Summit & recent announcements

 events, FIWARE Foundation  Comments Off on 1st FIWARE Summit & recent announcements
Dec 092016
 
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Being part of a global ecosystem has its perks but also can be really challenging. The startups and entrepreneurs, developers and users, accelerators and technical experts, cities and public authorities, companies and non-profit organizations, integrating the FIWARE Open Community, are well accustomed to this vibrant and demanding day-to-day.

Even for such list of test-proof members and partners, the last quarter of the year has been really action-packed. We have the FIWARE Summit coming up next week. It will be the first of a series of gatherings where our contributors will engage, will meet each other and learn about the potential of the technology, and decide the best way promote its adoption worldwide.

Being a very important date in our calendar, one that will mark the kick-off point for a new stage in the advancement of FIWARE as an Open Platform and Community, the Summit is not the only remarkable occurrence around. We have been realizing the word spreading about FIWARE, attending to top-level worldwide reaching events, like the IoT Solutions World Congress or the Smart City Expo World Congress, where we have been sharing our value proposition for the Internet of Things and for the smart urban communities.

_o3a6600While we were at the SCEWC, two announcements involving FIWARE were made: the first one was that, strengthening the links between the European Commission and our ecosystem, we were to join forces with Connecting Europe Facility (CEF) Digital. That is the main EU programme supporting the establishment of trans-European digital infrastructures, were FIWARE is appointed to provide the building blocks that will accelerate the testing of secure message exchange in different sectors, a key target in order to achieve a Digital Single Market.

The other announcement involved also one of our most notable partners, working together to enable a new economic model for the smart cities: TM Forum. This new collaboration is a natural extension of the previously announced partnership, with FIWARE supporting TM Forum Open APIs, making them available as part of the Business Framework components of the FIWARE platform. This partnership has been focusing on setting up the foundations to grow urban data economies, unleashing the potential of real-time open data. Now, by this renewed agreement with the FIWARE Foundation, TM Forum will incorporate the FIWARE NGSI API into its Smart City API Reference Architecture, pushing it to become the de-facto standard API for real-time open data, growingly adopted by cities.
 
Around the Economy of Data and joining efforts within an IoT-enabled Smart City framework, FIWARE was also recently recognized by the US White House, as a major contributor part of the global coalition that will identify pivotal points of interoperability, pointing out the standards that can enable the development of diverse but interoperable smart city solutions. Led by the US National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), the FIWARE Foundation is part of this global partnership with the American National Standards Institute, the U.S. Green Building Council, the Republic of Korea’s Ministry of Science, ICT, and Future Planning, the Italian Energy and Innovation Agency, and the European Telecommunications Standards Institute.

While reviewing these recent news and outcomes, we have already mentioned a couple of times the Foundation: as a matter of fact, the FIWARE Foundation was formally registered on October 28th, setting its headquarters in Berlin. It was legally constituted as a non-profit association, with Atos, Engineering, Orange and Telefónica acting as founding members, and with Ulrich Ahle appointed as Chief Executive Officer.
As the voice of the Open Community within the Industry, and bringing the expertise to enlarge and manage its shared resources, the Foundation is instrumental to the achievement of the FIWARE Mission: to build an Open, sustainable ecosystem around public, royalty-free and implementation-driven software platform standards. The standards that ease the development of new Smart Applications in multiple verticals.

banner-home_1180x596_okAimed at supporting the continued growth of the community and the ongoing advancement of the technology, the FIWARE Foundation has extended an invitation to all the contributors and the people and organizations interested in FIWARE, to join us at the first FIWARE Summit that will take place in Málaga (Spain) from 13th to 15th December. An occasion that will remain as the starting mark for this series of six-monthly events.

Encompassing not only developers of the Open Source code associated with the platform, but also all those who work to promote the adoption of technology, the Summit will include several talks given by experts that, together with the testimony of users in the sectors of Industry, Cities and Agriculture, will show the full potential of FIWARE across sectors and across borders.In addition, there will be a series of working meetings to coordinate the present and future actions of the Community. As well as a space for hands-on learning, with the aim to enable developers to acquire the necessary knowledge to create smart, innovative solutions using FIWARE.
Also the event will see the launch of the marketplace, a new service that will allow developers of solutions, manufacturers of compatible sensors, and suppliers to the platform, to publicize and disseminate what they offer that is based on or compatible with FIWARE.

The event will be organized in several tracks that will run in parallel during the three days: a FIWARE Community track where members of the FIWARE Community will meet to coordinate activities. A Developer's track, targeted to developers inside and outside the FIWARE Community, including a primer during the full first day of the event and half of the second day, and several specialized "how-to" technical sessions, during half of the second day and on the third day.  And a Conference track, targeted to business developers, decision makers, policy makers, startup/SME CEOs, cities’ representatives, researchers, public authorities, non-profit organizations and to the whole FIWARE Community. Plus a special evening event, on Wednesday (8.00 pm to 11.00 pm).
Check out the event updated agenda and don’t miss the opportunity to join us at the first FIWARE Summit and to discover what our Platform and Community could bring to boost your business, your project or your organization. The last tickets are still available!

With the recent announcements, the FIWARE Foundation and the first FIWARE Summit, we are moving forward, going global. Join in! Together, we build FIWARE!

FIWARE Foundation: Zabala Innovation Consulting to join as a gold member

 Accelerator Programme, events, FIWARE Foundation, Open Data  Comments Off on FIWARE Foundation: Zabala Innovation Consulting to join as a gold member
Dec 022016
 
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The FIWARE Foundation is now open for new members. This is just great news indeed! During the past years I had the chance to lead a wonderful team of partners into what it was a new adventure for the European Commission through the Future Internet PPP. Phase 3 they called it, the accelerators.

From Zabala Innovation Consulting we coordinated the first accelerator ever based on open data and FIWARE, no verticals in principle, although then we discovered that areas like smart cities, agro-food or health had a bigger impact than the others. Not surprising either if we see where FIWARE was and is putting their target on.
 

But this post will not talk about our accelerator anymore, you know “our story” and can have a look back as many times as you like. The reason for us is the FIWARE Foundation and the first FIWARE Summit, happening in a few days in Málaga.

The announcement is that Zabala Innovation Consulting will join the FIWARE Foundation as a gold partner. We do this without being an ICT-based company, we have no developers onboard nor develop technology as such. We are a consultancy services company with a large expertise on public funding at all imaginable levels. We work with local, regional and national authorities in our markets and of course with a number of agencies and organisations at EU-level. This is where FIWARE plays a really important role for us. Let me use the following lines to motivate this.
 

In 2013, we submitted our FINODEX proposal to the EC open call that was looking for the FIWARE accelerators. We had never had an earlier experience on Future Internet technologies, so our approach to FIWARE was due to the fact of managing open calls and being able to put our skills into practice through a new scheme for funding by the EC, the cascade-funding. ZABALA has over 30 years of experience in EU project management, we have been working on EU projects since the first framework programme with wonderful results, so approaching to new models and initiatives is as innovative as we are ourselves.

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After 27 months of FINODEX accelerator, we had the chance to discover several facts we had not imagined at the very beginning:
  • FIWARE Accelerate has created a large community of innovators around a technology.

  • It is not only the technology! Now we are one click away of mostly everyone in Europe related to innovation of ICT-services in a variety of domains.

  • Start-ups boost can also be driven with EU-funds, not only with large capital investments diluting their ownership.

  • FIWARE is here to stay in the long term, and the Foundation was the strongest evidence after the investment by the EC and a number of entities since 2011.

Being part of the FIWARE Accelerate programme as managers of one of the funds have allowed us to grow our portfolio of service and markets, now we work with a number of start-ups from many countries in Europe and we have risen the “word-to-mouth” approach that made us known in Spain to other latitudes in the continent.

At the same time we have already integrated FIWARE as part of the technical basis of a couple of EU-funded projects in the areas of Smart Cities and more specifically in waste management.

REPLICATE is a European research and development project that aims to deploy integrated energymobility and ICT solutions in city districts. It is funded by a €29m grant from Horizon 2020. The overarching vision of the REPLICATE project is to increase the quality of life for citizens across Europe by demonstrating the impact of innovative technologies used to co-create smart city services with citizens, and prove the optimal process for replicating successes within cities and across cities. There are three lead cities (called Smart City ‘Lighthouses’) which  include Bristol in Great Britain, Florence in Italy and San Sebastian in Spain. FIWARE will be one of the components to develop services related to the management and publication of open data.
 

WASTE4THINK. The main objective of this project is to move forward the current waste management practices into a circular economy motto, demonstrating the value of integrating and validating a set of 20 eco-innovative solutions that cover all the waste value chain. The cities where pilots will take place are Zamudio (ES), Cascais (PT). Part of the solutions are based on ICT technologies, and yes they are based on FIWARE. The project is lead by the University of Deusto (ES) and counts with the participation of two well-known FIWARE evangelists partners, Engineering (IT) and ourselves (ZABALA).

Therefore, we concluded that FIWARE is a key-enabler for research and innovation in Europe and beyond. The argument convinced us to be one of the first members in the Foundation, after the core group initially establishing the by-laws.
 

Being members of a technology foundation is a new and exciting adventure for us, we expect to be close to start-ups and their innovation during the following years helping as the mission states, to develop an open sustainable ecosystem around public, royalty-free and implementation-driven software platform standards that will ease the creation of Smart Applications in multiple sectors. We have already started to pursue this mission so we would encourage everyone to join the Foundation and add their bit in the mission.

A good starting point to work with the community will be the first FIWARE Summit happening in Málaga next 13th to 15th of December. Besides the wonderful track of technical talks, which is impressive, the number of workshops from the different Mission Support Committees or the conference itself, it will be a great opportunity to meet everyone again and explore new endeavours for the future of FIWARE. See you in Malaga?

 

 

 

zabala_todos_enero2016

By Miguel García (former coordinator of FINODEX accelerator
and senior consultant at Zabala Innovation Consulting)

 Posted by at 11:47 am

Founders Event 2016: the Evolution of FIWARE

 Blog, events, FIWARE Foundation, interviews, IoT, SmartCities  Comments Off on Founders Event 2016: the Evolution of FIWARE
Jun 032016
 
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Discussions at this week’s FIWARE Founders Event, held in Vienna (Austria) on 1 June, centred on three major themes that show not only where FIWARE stands at the midpoint of 2016, but also reflects the current state of the broader push for a global Internet of Things (IoT)-enabled information management infrastructure.

FIWARE Founding partners, European Commission delegates, city leaders and industry (from startups, to mid-size businesses to global companies) all talked in terms of FIWARE’s evolution, with three major points repeatedly touched on by speakers:

  • The requirements for a smart city infrastructure

  • How IoT evolves from service optimization to economic empowerment

  • How a smart cities infrastructure can become a broader IoT fabric for industry and agriculture.

“Today, the FIWARE community has made a commitment to the future,” said Jesús Villasante, Head of Unit at the European Commission’s DG Connect. “This is the beginning of a new phase. I believe FIWARE will be a success in the market. It will be a global platform, it will be open, and today marks the beginning of that process.” Villasante pointed out that up until this month, FIWARE has been growing its technology and ecosystem, whereas the Founders meeting held this week now signals the start of a phase where FIWARE is ready to enter the market.

A Smart City Infrastructure

Cities that have taken up the use of FIWARE for their projects shared some of the guiding principles that led to their support for the platform. The City of Eindhoven has spelled this out clearly in its IoT Charter, which acknowledges:

  • Citizen privacy must come first

  • Data must be open

  • The platform must embrace open standards

  • The infrastructure must be “modular” in its design so that components can be plugged into a diverse range of value chains created to meet local needs.

“It is a unique occasion to see that you are not the only city having the problems you have,” explained Patrice Slupowski, VP Digital Innovation at Orange, one of the members of the FIWARE Foundation. “No city should feel they are the only one to have these problems. So you are able to look at other cities that have created solutions on top of FIWARE and share and reuse these solutions.”

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Gema Roig, Project Coordinator at Inndea Valencia, an agency in charge of bringing innovation to Valencia, agreed: “This will be really useful because all of the solutions developed and tested in Valencia could be scalable to the rest of the cities of Europe, or around the world, who use FIWARE.”

Vienna, Malaga, Valencia and Eindhoven all spoke of the strengthening ability that FIWARE provides in helping them solve urban challenges by using open source technologies, and the opportunity the FIWARE platform gives them to share their experiences with other cities that have similar problems.

From Service Optimization to Economic Empowerment

Once cities began using FIWARE’s smart city infrastructure, a profound evolution began to emerge. Firstly, FIWARE enabled service optimization.Cities began the day by discussing how they use FIWARE for installing electric stabilizers & flow restrictors for public lighting, managing photovoltaic and wind powered street lamps, enabling intelligent monitoring of public buildings, and installing digital water metering networks. All of these service solutions reduced energy and resource consumption and better managed a city’s limited resources and budget.

But as FIWARE infrastructure began to open data to support citizens, or even host data from third parties enabling multiple business models, a second wave of innovation occurrs that can foster new local economic development. In this respect, cities find that FIWARE becomes a crucial enabler for developing an Economy of Data.

Gail Kent, from the European Commission’s DG Connect, summed it up by saying: “What I have found particularly interesting is the whole ecosystem around FIWARE. In the presentations from Valencia, Eindhoven and Malaga, for developers and for startups, it enables them to develop easier and faster. For corporates, it gives them better access to innovators and to startups. For end users, it gives smarter and better services for the citizen.”

20160601_155815Orazio Viele, Director General of Research and Innovation at Engineering, one of the members of the FIWARE Foundation, said that FIWARE was enabling a new era of co-opetition: “That is, competition with co-operation with other companies to expand and enlarge the market and standardize solutions. On the one side, the city or industry are customers of FIWARE. On the other side, some of these companies and municipalities participate in FIWARE to standardize the solution.”

What all speakers shared from their experiences was that as FIWARE is taken up by a city, it is first leveraging data, sensors, technology and city infrastructure to optimize services. But as FIWARE is built on a modular, open source design, it means that solutions can be scaled to other cities, which creates new business opportunities for innovators on the platform. In addition, as more specific data is created and shared on the platform, that too creates new economic opportunities for data providers.

From smart cities to smart industry and smart agribusiness

The IoT-enabled infrastructure that FIWARE helps to deploy has proven itself valuable not only to the smart city domain but other sectors.

“All of the cities demonstrated the importance that they have in an open platform. Next to cities, we add new sites coming from industry and agribusiness,” said Hubert Tardieu, from ATOS, another member of the FIWARE Foundation.

“What I do expect is that the take up of the FIWARE technology will really accelerate,” shared William Jonker, CEO of EIT Digital, who participated in Wednesday’s event. “I think it was a very wise idea to focus first on one area, which was smart cities, but, of course, the FIWARE technology is much more generic and can work in industry, food and agriculture, and health.”

Rosalia Simon, Telefonica’s IoT Smart Cities Director summed up the evolution as she sees it: “Today we have the technology, the platform, the ecosystem. What we need now are more use cases, more industries and more companies of different sizes. The difference with other platforms in the market is first of all, FIWARE is open. The natural evolution is that you do a pilot with a customer, you discover things with that customer, you enhance both the use case of that customer but also your own platform, and then you move forward to a different customer in a different industry.”

As FIWARE enters the market as a proven smart city infrastructure fabric, the next stage will be to continue growing the use cases, as Simon says. Along with that will come the economic dimension: FIWARE has the potential to foster a new economic equality where multiple actors — from local businesses and startups to global co-opetitors — can all share in revenue generating and business opportunities reflective of their individual contributions and of the innovation value they co-create. Defining those business models is the next stage of work that will begin to emerge now that FIWARE is industry-ready.

We have assembled a number of interviews with some of the main participants of the Founders event. You can watch them in our video-album.

Find also the agenda followed during the event.

 Posted by at 12:49 pm

FIWARE at the MWC 2016: championing technology, empowering the community

 Blog, FIWARE Foundation, GSMA, IoT, SmartAgri, SmartCities  Comments Off on FIWARE at the MWC 2016: championing technology, empowering the community
Feb 262016
 
A sign reading 'Mobile World Congress' is pictured a day before the opening of the 3GSM World congress in Barcelona, on February 14, 2010. The 2010 Mobile World Congress will be held 15-18 February, in Barcelona. AFP PHOTO/JOSEP LAGO (Photo credit should read JOSEP LAGO/AFP/Getty Images)

A great–if not the greatest- part of our daily actions, already involve the use of mobile technologies. Surrounded by sensors and context-aware devices connected to the Internet, we are able to use our smartphones to secure our houses, check our health and make purchases without carrying money. We can even track a cow which is separated from the rest of the cattle, if livestock is the business in which we are smart-managing.
 
The Mobile World Congress has become an essential place to present the Internet of Things novelties and for the IoT and Data Industry advancements to be set in motion. For FIWARE, the MWC 2016 has been exciting and fruitful, gathering entrepreneurs, enthusiasts, innovators and their targeted users, and attending a ceremony will remain as a milestone for our platform and the evolution of our ecosystem.

20160223_102942 (1)As we announced in a previous post, FIWARE technology has been present and playing a key role in the SmartAgri demonstrations.
Three products powered by FIWARE were showcased at the GSMA Innovation City. And the three made evident to which extent IoT is boosting the smart agricultural industry: installing Insylo allows one to remotely handle livestock nourishment, based on the 3D level monitoring of feed silos; Agricolus crop management system merges data collection and dissemination to prevent and stop pests; Stepla solution helps to locate farm animals and remotely monitor their health. The three are based in context-awareness and they involve the placement of sensors that can even convert a regular cow into a smart one.

FIWARE was also present as a part of the SmartCity exhibition, where HERE application showcase displayed a virtual GPS-guided drive. The GPS map being enriched with contextual data, generated and shared in real-time by four smart cities from three different countries. This app has been developed by Ubiwhere and Wellness Telecom, the University of Cantabria and Telefonica I+D, as well as HERE Maps.
Although different cities may own different systems for managing information, if the cities are exporting the relevant data in a common way, the diverse systems will be “speaking” the same language, and the data could be shared in the same platform.
The SmartCity demo also demonstrated how data provided by different partners can be consumed and monetized within one open marketplace. TM Forum Ecosystem’s APIs enable such implementation. Those APIs are developed as a part of the collaborative framework with FIWARE that was announced a few months ago.

IMG_0075Another buzz was on about the platform: an important declaration was planned in order to be made at the Mobile World Congress this year. One waited with great anticipation and that may impel a profound movement within the whole ecosystem. After the MWC 2016, FIWARE has changed for good.
On the European Commission pavilion, Günther H. Oettinger, EU Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, made the announcement: the Core Idustry Group, with the welcoming support of the European Commission, was launching the FIWARE Foundation.

In brief, the FIWARE Foundation joins in to remain as an independent, small and agile body within the FIWARE ecosystem. It will provide the other actors with its shared resources and the expertise of its members, aiming to empower FIWARE Technologies and the Open Community, and to pursue the accomplishment of the FIWARE Mission: to build an open sustainable ecosystem around open-source, IoT-enabled, smart services platform standards.
FIWARE is now being adopted globally, as those standards are very much needed for the Industry 4.0 worldwide, and for the global Digitising revolution that is already happening. The FIWARE Foundation is here also to push that process of standardization.

As the European Commission has put it; the Foundation will ensure the long-term availability of FIWARE for users, for free and forever in the future. It will also ensure that FIWARE stays at the forefront of the technological trends.
Oettinger also emphasized how the Foundation should not be a closed shop: it is in fact open for new members to enroll, at its due time. More key players are expected to join in at the Founders Forum in Vienna, in May.

Representatives of Telefonica, Orange, Engineering and ATOS –the four actual members of the FIWARE Foundation- were present at the event. After the launch ceremony, we had the chance to talk with two of them: Hubert Tardieu –Personal Advisor to ATOS CEO Thierry Breton- and Pierre Louette –CEO Delegate General Secretariat of Orange-.

Tardieu told us about how his company has insisted on the coming technical decisions being deployed according with the specific business objectives of the FIWARE community, to ensure the future development of the platform; and in what manner openness and meritocracy will continue to guide that path: “there will be a Board and a Technical Committee. Every new member of the FIWARE Foundation –user or Industry member- could be eligible to be part of them”.
 
Both Louette and Tardieu envisioned the launching of the FIWARE Foundation as the necessary next step to push FIWARE as a technical standard for Smart Cities, Smart Industry, Smart Agrifood and beyond, and as a useful platform that can produce disruptive, effective and profitable solutions for our future. The FIWARE Foundation comes to accelerate “a Cloud-based platform –in Louette words- with a lot of services around. An Open innovation platform with open APIs”.

A new key part of the Community has arrived to grant a better future for the whole FIWARE ecosystem. Let’s welcome the FIWARE Foundation.