Parimbelli, Enea (University of Ottawa) | Pala, Daniele (University of Pavia) | Bellazzi, Riccardo (University of Pavia) | Vera-Munoz, Cecilia (Universidad Politecnica de Madrid) | Casella, Vittorio (University of Pavia)
The percentage of the world’s population living in urban areas is projected to increase significantly in the next decades. This makes the urban environment the perfect bench for research aiming to manage and respond to dramatic demographic and epidemiological transitions. In this context the PULSE project has partnered with five global cities to transform public health from a reactive to a predictive system focused on both risk and resilience. PULSE aims at producing an integrated data ecosystem based on continuous large-scale collection of information available within the smart city environment. The integration of environmental data, citizen science and location-specific predictive modeling of disease onset allows for richer analytics that promote informed, data-driven health policy decisions. In this paper we describe the PULSE ecosystem, with a special focus on its WebGIS component and its prototype version based on New York city data.
Stephen William Hawking CH CBE FRS FRSA (8 January 1942 – 14 March 2018) was an English theoretical physicist, cosmologist, author and Director of Research at the Centre for Theoretical Cosmology within the University of Cambridge. His scientific works included a collaboration with Roger Penrose on gravitational singularity theorems in the framework of general relativity and the theoretical prediction that black holes emit radiation, often called Hawking radiation. Hawking was the first to set out a theory of cosmology explained by a union of the general theory of relativity and quantum mechanics. He was a vigorous supporter of the many-worlds interpretation of quantum mechanics. Hawking was an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (FRSA), a lifetime member of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, and a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian award in the United States. In 2002, Hawking was ranked number 25 in the BBC's poll of the 100 Greatest Britons. He was the Lucasian Professor of Mathematics at the University of Cambridge between 1979 and 2009 and achieved commercial success with works of popular science in which he discusses his own theories and cosmology in general. His book, A Brief History of Time, appeared on the British Sunday Times best-seller list for a record-breaking 237 weeks. Hawking had a rare early-onset slow-progressing form of motor neurone disease (also known as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and Lou Gehrig's disease), that gradually paralysed him over the decades. Even after the loss of his speech, he was still able to communicate through a speech-generating device, initially through use of a hand-held switch, and eventually by using a single cheek muscle. Hawking was born on 8 January 1942 in Oxford to Frank (1905–1986) and Isobel Hawking (née Walker; 1915–2013). Despite their families' financial constraints, both parents attended the University of Oxford, where Frank read medicine and Isobel read Philosophy, Politics and Economics. The two met shortly after the beginning of the Second World War at a medical research institute where Isobel was working as a secretary and Frank was working as a medical researcher. They lived in Highgate; but, as London was being bombed in those years, Isobel went to Oxford to give birth in greater safety. Hawking had two younger sisters, Philippa and Mary, and an adopted brother, Edward. In 1950, when Hawking's father became head of the division of parasitology at the National Institute for Medical Research, Hawking and his family moved to St Albans, Hertfordshire.
In the past few years, we observed the emergence of wearable technologies which have mostly been facilitated via fitness and well-being applications, although their true future potential lays in the disrupting force they are placing on the healthcare sector. As a matter of fact, nowadays, thanks to FitBit, Apple smart-watches and Nike connected shoes, we have the ability to track lots of information from our sleeping patterns to extensive body vitals. Nevertheless, the big question is: how do we use this information? To better understand the trends in healthcare and their application, a good example to examine is the work accomplished by Dutch company, Sensara. Sensara is a spin-off European research project: they offer a subscription service for the monitoring of silver consumers in their homes.
Data integration is central in Web application development because these applications typically deal with a variety of information formats. Ontology-driven applications face the additional challenge of integrating these multiple formats with the information stored in ontologies. A number of mappings are required to reconcile the variety of formats to produce a coherent overall system. To address these mappings we have developed a number of open source tools that support transformations between some of the common formats encountered when developing an ontology-driven Web application. The Semantic Web Rule Language (SWRL) is a central building block in these tools. We describe these tools and illustrate their use in the development of a prototype Web-based application.
Medical images are proliferating at an explosive pace, similar to other types of data in e-Science. Technological solutions are needed to enable machines to help researchers and physicians access and use these images optimally. While Semantic Web technologies are showing promise in tackling the information challenges in biomedicine, less attention is focused on leveraging similar technologies in imaging. We are developing methods and tools to enable the transparent discovery and use of large distributed collections of medical images in cyberspace as well as within hospital information systems. Our approach is to make the human and machine descriptions of image pixel content machine-accessible through annotation using ontologies.