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Exploratory Research Projects


  • Remote Sensing for Digital Earth (RSDE)

Remote Sensing for Digital Earth unit activities aim at the definition of an integrated system that can jointly use remote sensing and pattern recognition technologies in different application domains for supporting a digital monitoring, analysis and sustainable management of the Earth. Attention is put on the development of efficient low-cost services with high impact. Earth monitoring is carried out at variable time and space scales by means of different kinds of data. In greater detail we deal with both satellite and airborne remote sensing data including low to very high spatial resolution images; single-, multi- and hyper- temporal acquisitions; multi- and hyper-spectral optical images acquired by passive sensors; and Synthetic Aperture Radar images acquired by active sensors. To satisfy the application requirements each kind of image requires the optimization of specific analysis techniques. Thus from the methodological point of view RSDE develops research activities in the fields of classification techniques for single- and multi-date images; estimation of bio- and geo-physical parameters; trend analysis; image retrieval from large database; and multisource data processing. Our scientific activity aims also at strengthen the connection between technological and methodological developments, and to define competences related to specific application fields (e.g., agriculture, forestry, smart cities, civil protection, climate change). The lists of technologies, methodologies and applications are not intended to be exhaustive. It is a specific goal of the novel research area to update them dynamically according to future needs and requirements at local and global level.

The E3DA Unit is a novel explorative unit. Our core expertise lies in miniaturized energy efficient mobile and embedded electronics, low power digital architectures and platforms for processing, sensing, actuation and communication.Research leverages from the scientific challenges in the area of mobile, ubiquitous and embedded system architectures, hardware-software co-design for digital systems and energy efficiency in resource constrained devices with a cross-layer and cross-disciplinary approach. The research challenges come both from the enabling technologies and from the application requirements.  To satisfy such requirements, the E3DA unit works on signal processing, sensor fusion, machine learning with emphasis on their optimization for energy efficient embedded platforms. We capitalize on this expertise in designing wearable devices, smart objects, body area networks (BAN) and wireless sensor networks (WSN) to be applied in human-machine interaction, IoT and smart spaces, pervasive and personal health, motor rehabilitation, sports and training.

Digital Commons Lab (DCL) is an exploratory project with the aim of studying, supporting, popularizing, and innovating the world of digital commons.“Commons” is a term used to comprise the goods shared by all the members of a Community. Associating this term with “digital” refers particularly to open technologies whom Internet is the best expression and the Open Source movement one of the biggestdrives.Software has a key role within our society and it is defined as the essence of the XXI century.All the evolution we are experiencing is generating more and more initiatives able to create digital common goods.Open Source (software), Open Content (contents), Open Data (data), Open Access (scientific publications) are the keywords of the idea of digital common goods which form different communities who advocate for and advance the interest in these fields.If these communities where once niches, now they are well structured realities able to talk with institutions (as for Open Knowledge Foundation on the topic of Open Data), or companies (Canonical, Suse and RedHat being amongst the most known), and projectnow part of the daily life of many people (as Wikipedia and OpenStreetMap) becoming now a foundational part of the digital era.As all the changes these initiatives come with various challenges which go from the certification of the created products (in particular for crowdsourced projects like OpenStreetMap) and their sustainability, but on the other hand they also generate innovation.The digital commons lab wants to be a place to analyze the results of what is continuously produced by the communities with the aim of fostering their growth through the popularization of these themes and the analysis of the dynamics in the communities aiming to reduce the distances in the dialog with the public administration, the businesses and citizens.Outputs of the lab will be best practices, verification tools and popularizing events designed for public institutions, companies and the communities themselves acting as a strong force for innovation not only on the technological side but, first and foremost, with a big social impact.Digital Commons Lab is also the group of FBK that has the task to represent the node of the Open Data Institute in Trento.

The Mobile and Social Computing Lab (MobS) is a novel exploratory research unit. The main goal of MobS is to build predictive and computational approaches to human behavior understanding using the newly ubiquitous digital data that are becoming available about all aspects of human life (smartphone data, location data, credit card transactions, wearable sensor data, transportation cards, social media, etc.). MobS also aims at using all this information on human dynamics to re-design organizations, cities, and societies and to have breaktrough impacts on several fields such as urban planning and city science, management and organizational behavior, public health, energy consumption, well-being, finance and economics, and so on.Another relevant research topic of MobS is studying new "user-centric" paradigms for managing, sharing and monetizing personal data. The MobS unit adopts an highly interdisciplinary approach at the intersection of several disciplines such as mobile sensing, machine learning and data science, network science, multimodal processing, social psychology and social sciences.MobS strongly collaborates with the Human Dynamics group at MIT Media Lab and with several telecommunications companies (Telecom Italia, Telefonica, etc.).