Active engagement FEDeRATED at IPIC Conference in Athens 13-15 June 2023

From 13-15 June, the International Physical Internet Cnference (IPIC) took place in Athens, successfully organized by ALICE. This years conference was the first since 2019 enabling participants to meet physically. A great opportunity for the 200+ participants to reconnect; - for FEDeRATED to present and discuss its works. At the conference, Wout Hofman (FEDeRATED Architecture Group)  presented  FEDeRATED and its results in the plenary meeting. In addition he delivered a FEDeRATED technically detailed presentation in a session moderated by Guido Picolli (Codognotto and FEDeRATED activity 4 leader) 

Both presentations led to a lively discussion with the audience. The discussion centered round issues like the support of SMEs and standards. A solution for SMEs must be simple and easy to install and use, of course low cost. Based on the development of Technology Independent Services - like the multimodal visibility service that has been presented - innovative applications could be developed by third parties within an open source - Creative Common - framework approach. Standards are a bit more complex as they consider semantics, syntax, and governance. The FEDeRATED approach presented is to standardize the meta level  (the úpper ontology) and provide procedures for alignment and application of these standards with tools.

The long and winding road
In general, during  IPIC it became clear a mis-alignment between business people and researchers in supply and logistics versus IT developers is taking place. Where the first group speaks about the introduction of (more) ‘platforms’, the IT guys focus on developing distributed solutions like the ones of FEDeRATED. Furthermore, where the plenary discussions focused on ‘standards’,  it is becoming obvious that most, if not all, IPIC plenary speakers developed their own ‘data models’ to deal with standards. An endless standardization road will follow, probably hardly assisting any SME to engage in seamless data sharing practices

Let's get practical
What if, as FEDeRATED proposes,  we were to take ‘standards’ out of the equation, align, and match these models via the FEDeRATED ontology, and potentially applying Large Language Models (LLM) like ChatGPT? Standards would become obsolete!

For those that have not got their own models in place, yet : Not to worry. Please express data requirements and capabilities by the FEDeRATED ontology and you can join easily. On-boarding then can focus on ‘trust’ provided by an open infrastructure for Identification and Authentication. More to come at the FEDeRATED EU Data Logistics Festival on 30 November 2023 in Brussels. 

For the architects and humans

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This project is co-funded by the European Commission Connecting Europe Facility (CEF)