|Roy van der Werp
| Interest for ASTRON's activities from all over the world, this time from Dutch Embassies in several countries in Europe, Africa and Asia. On 3 November, a group of around 20 representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs visited Drenthe.
In the morning, Gert Kruithof welcomed them at ASTRON and gave a presentation on ASTRON's activities and the challenges with regard to big data. He concluded his presentation with the following 'take home message':
- Our society evolves towards a 'smart and connected world'
- Data is raw material in a production process of information
- Data is an asset; it represents value, delivers competitive edge
- 'Edge computing': process data at the source of generation
- Big data is a solution as well as problem in sustainability
- Attention needs to be paid to privacy aspects
- Scientific and industrial organisations in the Netherlands can provide valuable expertise on: algorithms, models, artificial intelligence, architectures, computing technology, sensors
After the presentation from Gert, the Dutch Embassies had a tour through the labs of ASTRON. Afterwards, Marco Bosch of Sustainder in Emmen, demonstrated their smart public lighting hub.
It was a perfect day with great weather and the sun highlighted the autumn colours in the beautiful surroundings of ASTRON, which they really enjoyed. Along the foot path to the Dwingeloo telescope, many mush rooms (agarics), were 'calling for attention'. So not only pictures were taken of the Dwingeloo telescope.... They continued their trip for a visit to Health Hub in Roden.
Just before leaving Lysianne Katier, of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, spoke a few words of thanks to ASTRON for the hospitality and handed over a 'Haagse Kakker' to Gert who, born in The Hague, was not familiar with this kind of flat raisin bread filled with almond paste. With regard to the visit she stated: "The visit was very interesting. For our colleagues, it was good to hear and see ASTRON's activities. This knowledge is very useful for the various Embassies in supporting Dutch companies doing business abroad."