Archive for the ‘Media’ Category

About the Next Steps of the Future Center Smart Systems and the Leiden Center of Data Science

Sunday, May 4th, 2014

At 28-4-2014 the Future Center Smart Systems (FCSS) was launched At the same moment the Leiden Center of Data Science (LCDS) was announced. This is not a coincidence.

FCSS and LCDS are two parts of the same coin. LCDS is focused on the Science of Data and FCSS is focused on using the results of the Science of Data to build Smart Systems or to give the Science of Data interesting problems to solve. FCSS is Practice and LCDS is theory.

When we look at Wikipedia we see that the Data Sciences are defined as “The study of the generalizable extraction of knowledge from data”. Knowledge shows itself in this case as Models, Patterns and Laws (Rules).

The Data Sciences detect patterns based on facts and are an abstraction of the Scientific Process itself.  The Data Sciences are therefore also called E-Science. 

E-Science is a combination of:  Signal processing, Mathematics, Probability models, Machine learning, Statistical learning, Computer programming, Data engineering, Pattern recognition and learning, Visualization, Uncertainty modeling, Data warehousing, and High performance computing.

Because E-Science is an abstraction of Science it can be applied to every science you can think of. In the case of the LCDS the current sciences that are involved are Physics, Astronomy, Bio-Science (Leiden Bioscience Park), Life-Sciences (Dutch Techcenter for Life Sciences, DTL), Medical Sciences (LUMC), Law (Leiden Law School), Aviation (NLR), Mathematics and Informatics (LIACS).

The FCSS is not only about E-Science it is also about using the patterns that are discovered to control processes and influence humans. In this case we are interested in the developments in Value, Case & Process-managers,  Domain Models and Sensor-Technology. Theory is static and practice is dynamic. Theory becomes practice by doing.

In the long view we expect that the combination of Senses & Actions & Thinking Machines will lead to Autonomous Systems that will help and support Humans. These systems are sometimes called Robots because we believe Autonomous Systems look like us but an autonomous system like our Universe does not have to move itself.

The next step of the Future Center is to connect with practice, start with technology transfer and find out what the need is of the market.

The Future Center is already involved in some projects and we wants to start some more. If you are interested to participate in one of the projects or want to start a new projects send an email to

  • Smart System Architectures
Smart Systems need Smart System Architectures. They are a combination of existing architectures based on Process-Models & Sensor-Systems (the Sensory-Motor System) and new architecture that are related to Visualization (the Imagination), Analytics (Data, Process, Text, Software-mining (Thinking)) and Social Networks. (Emotions). The end state is called Global Brain (“The Singularity”).
  • Disclosure of Open Data (Repository, Data Warehouses/Data Cards, Visualization)
A lot of Open Data is entering the market. It is not clear where this data is situated and what the data means. In this case we need a Repository and tools to define what part of the data we need at this moment (a Data Warehouse, Data Cards). We need also tools to hide the complexity of the current open databases and makes it possible to show what is available (Visualization).
  • Smart Innovation (Business-model generation out of Big- & Open Data) 

There are already many on-line tools available that support the innovation process. The data that is used in these tools (for instance market-data) has to be gathered to validate the models. We want to use the Data-sciences to gather appropriate market-data and detect interesting business-opportunities, To do that we want to use Big- and especially Open Data. 

  • Smart Value Chain Integration & Reversal (Product Configurators, Data/Proces/Software-Mining, Intelligent User-Interfaces)
The value-chains are integrating and the customer is moving into control. Currently a value chain consists of many companies that use many not integrated and not connected legacy-systems. These systems contain data and process-models. We want to use the Data-Sciences to detect these models (Process-mining. Data-Mining, Software-Mining) and map them to available domain-models (ACCORD, ARTS,…) or develop shared domain-models. The data that is used in the value-chain can be mapped to a product-configurator. Last but not least the user-interaction with the customers has te be designed.
  • Smart Education (Just-in-Time Education)
Technology is changing fast. This has a huge impact on education. The current system of education is not able  to react to the fast moving technology-waves because it is created  to support the Industrial Revolution that ended around 1950. We are now beyond the next wave that is taking over manual work and moving into the next step in which the Human Brian is copied. The solution to this all, Life Long Education,  is already invented a long time ago but we are not implementing this solution because the Current Education System is aimed at preventive education, trying to train people in the first stage of their life. The solution is Just-in-Time-Education, training people at the moment they need knowledge (DeepQA) or experience (Simulators).
  • Smart Buildings & Building Process (with ABN AMRO Dialogs House)
The Building Industry is already using 3D-Models (BIM). A BIM-model is a low-level product-configurator but the model can be moved to a higher level in which it is possible to share (and sell) complete Models (for instance a Hospital). The models can be used to simulate every attribute of a building and let the customers play with possible designs. The models can be used to calculate risk and most important optimize existing buildings (Facility Management). When we combine this with sensor-technology we are able to create adaptable buildings.
  • Smart Food Chain & Dietetics
The Food Value Chain will revert and the customer will be in control. At this moment the customers are educated with theories about food that are changing fast. “Good” Food is time, context and body-dependent. We want to make tools that use personal sensors that show the customer what they have to eat to stay healthy and tell them where and how they can buy this food.
  • Food & Health (with the International Alliance of Future Centers)
It is not clear what the impact is of Food on our Health. In this project we will analyze the complete food-chain.
  • Smart Urban Space (The Self Actualizing City)
This is an integration of the concepts of the Smart City, Integrated Value Chains, the Creative City and Smart Social Networks.
  • Next Generation Media

Media are at this moment based on the Sender/Receiver-concept. We want to use the Data Sciences to detect patterns, transform these patterns into text and images and implement a feed-back process with the customers.

  • Next Generation Theatre
We want to use the concept of  5D Film to create a new type of sensory and emotional experience.
  • Next Generation Energy Systems
Implementing Autarkic Energy Systems.
  • Smart Mobility
Using new concepts like the Self-Driving Car & Sensor-Networks  to optimize mobility in Big Cities.
  • Social Enterprises (Impact Finance, Social Bonds, Circular Systems, Cooperatives, Complementary Currencies)
The next generation enterprises has to be aware and reduce its impact on society and environment. In this project we also look the finance of Social Enterprises (Impact Finance, Social Bonds) but also at the circular economy, new organizational structures (cooperations, ) and new financial systems based on complementary currencies.
  • Conflict-Resolution/E-Mediation
Preventing and resolving conflicts by implementing Smart Mediation.
  • Future Jobs (Unemployement & Sense-making, with the International Alliance of Future Centers)
What are the consequences of Smart Systems on employment?
  • Smart Care Systems

We want to use Smart Systems to help people that need Economic, Physical, Social and/or Mental Support.

  • Virtual Future Centers (with the International Alliance of Future Centers) 
Future Centers are currently location-based. Future Centers look like Smart Systems because they Sense their environment, react (Process Manager) on the Events that are happening, try to predict what will happen (Analytics), involve Networks (Communitiies of Practice, Interest and/or Affinity) and Scientific Knowledge Centers (like the LCDS), create a shared Vision and  put this vision into Action (Entrepeneurs, Innovators, Incubators). There are already many people busy with developing parts of the Virtual Future Center. We are currently designing an Architecture and will create an Alliance to join the efforts of all participants.
  • Next Generation Secure Data Centers
Smart Systems need Smart Data Centers.


The Presentation of Prof. dr. H. J. van den Herik about Big Data and the Leiden Center of Data Science.


About the Future of Radio

Wednesday, August 13th, 2008

When I was young (I am 57) the only link to the outside world was radio. My parents were poor and it took a very long time until they were able to buy a television. Until that time we went to friends to look at television shows that were the top of the bill (the Black & White Minstrel Show!).

 Together with my friend Fred we built a radio receiver and a radio transmitter. We started to make our own radio programs and were exited when we found out that others we able to listen to us. We were also very afraid the police would find us. At that time many young and old people were exploiting their own small “illegal” radio station. Some of them have never stopped.

When the television finally appeared in our home everything changed. My parents (especially my father) wanted to look and listen to almost everything. We had to keep our mouths shut. The television dominated our family and everything we did together like playing games stopped. I hated television and I must say I never fell in love with the Medium. It is taking too much of my time without giving anything back.

The best thing that happened to me was You Tube and other tools that make it possible to look/listen to something I want to see/hear at the right time and the right place. I am finally in control of my own time again.

I am still a friend of the Radio. The first reason is that radio is not dominant. I can listen to the radio and read a book. It is easy to drive a car and listen to the Radio.

Radio is also exiting when it comes to Events. I still prefer to listen to a soccer-game instead of watching the soccer-game on television. The combination is really fun. It has to do with the Emotions of the reporter and the Details he is presenting.

Radio is all about Emotions.

Radio brings you in a certain mood. Because mood changes with the moment Radio has to specialize. It also has to specialize because people have all kind of different interests. They want to know about what is happening in their local community but they also want to know what is happening in the world. They want to know more about Science, Sports, Politics or Spirituality.

What is the Future of Radio?

At this moment radio stations are essentially bought and paid for by the record companies through what is known as Payola. They are not in the business of helping you and I enjoy music, they are in the business of making money. At the end of the day, organizations have to make money to stay in business, but if making money is all that they care about, they will need to figure out a way to do without relying on people listening to the radio. The current scheme will be gone in the near future.


Increasingly, program directors are using computer programs to choose the records their stations will play. They are creating a Digital JuBox. Once everything is put in the music library the director can give the program a series of instructions and let the program produce a playlist. Is programmed Radio, Radio with a Heart?



The Radio of the Future is all about Listeners becoming the Stars and the Core contributors and Producers of the content that a radio will air. There will be free tools, facilities and access to content to allow individuals to search, edit and compile unique documentaries, investigative reports, artistic montages and new kinds of music. The Radio of the Future will be a tool to support Creativity and Passion.

  • Radio as a Digital Jubox

There is no need to listen to a Digital Jubox if everybody is able to program his own Digital Jubox.

  • Radio as a Commercial Tool

Everybody hates Commercials.

  • Radio is Life Itself

The real strength of radio is its ability to be truly “live”. Broadcasting can take place from nearly any place or location to report, chronicle or create “live” news and events. Being able to listen to something that is happening at this very second in another place is something that most humans get fascinated by.

  • Radio is the Human Voice

The live human voice is a totally different experience than any other one. It is powerful, touching and engaging.

  • Think Global, Act Local

Start at the Lowest level of Interaction, The Local Community. Give them the News and Interaction they Need. Create As Many Levels You want to Abstract the Local News. Create a Political View, an Ecological View, a Scientific View on the Your Content. Mix World News with Local News but when Local News becomes World News (or National News or …) be the first to be at The Right Place at the Right Moment.

  • Do it Yourself Radio

Give Listeners the opportunity to create and broadcast their own radio programs. It will generate new music, alternative news and reporting talent.

  • Radio is a Two Way Channel

Not only give Listeners the opportunity to broadcast but give them also the opportunity to react real-time and create groups to deepen an issue. Give them the opportunity to report their findings. If this happens it will close the feedback loop.

  • Specialize

Everything is a niche. Specific kinds of music, news or commentary are becoming clearly more important than typical generalized radio content that needs to appeal to as large as possible an audience.

  • People want to be surprised

Commercial radio today is less concerned with finding music that will draw listeners in than with eliminating music that might drive listeners out. The result is numbing repetition. People like repetition for a little while but when a format is completely predictable they will “zap” for something else. Some people like being surprised by strange sounds they have never heard before.

  • Archive, Classify and Search

Allow access to each and every show, interview or news item ever broadcast. People want to listen at their time to what they want to hear. Make it easy to look for what they want.

  • Create and experiment with as many channels and formats as you want


It is very easy to subdivide and multiply content into multiple channels with no major additional costs in infrastructure. If a channel or a format is not attracting enough listeners simply reconfigurate your content and start a new one.