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intelligent Knowledge-as-a-Service Platform

Periodic Reporting for period 3 - iKaaS (intelligent Knowledge-as-a-Service Platform)

Reporting period: 2016-10-01 to 2017-09-30

iKaaS set out to pave the way towards trouble free multi-cloud service provisioning, envisioning a scenario where users are not just consumers of services and resources but can also play the role of a provider of -in many case otherwise underutilized- resources.

To make this vision materialize, iKaaS developed a set of components that address the whole lifecycle management of services in such a sharing and consuming ecosystem; from collection and processing of heterogeneous contributed IoT data, to the manipulation of service chains in a secure and trusted manner. Adopting a “lead by example” approach, iKaaS demonstrated the feasibility and merits of this approach in a set of exemplary use cases evolving around Smart Cities, of interest to project partners but also of greater societal impact, as this was confirmed through a proactive stakeholder engagement process that indicated that these scenarios were very well received. iKaaS, however, didn’t stop at validating the use cases; there is strong commitment among the iKaaS project partners to bring these solutions to the market as well as to feed future follow-up research activities.

In addition, the developed components have been made publicly available, meaning that stakeholders of similar -or even different- nature to the iKaaS project partners can leverage these as a solid basis for further development and service support.
"During the project significant work has taken place to deliver a secure, robust and scalable multi-cloud platform. Towards this end a set of use cases (5 in total) in the broader smart cities/homes area was identified, not only matching the interests and daily business of project partners, but also calling inherently for the joint consideration of IoT, Big Data and Cloud challenges. The ethical and privacy issues that may arise especially in a cross-border setup were also identified and appropriate processes and measures have been put in place.

With respect to the iKaaS platform, following a structured and joint consideration of IoT, Big Data and Cloud requirements, the architecture of the iKaaS platform together with the interfaces specification was developed. The architecture further decomposes the original idea of a multi-cloud environment onto a set of components and their needed functionalities for accommodating the whole lifecycle of a service rolled out using the iKaaS platform. The platform design also supports the notion of ""Knowledge as a Service (KaaS)"" allowing third parties to become both consumers as well as providers of data (raw or processed) and even functionalities of/to the platform.

The identified components and supported functionalities were further elaborated with their final specification and algorithmic implementation being delivered together with data model components of the unified iKaaS data model. The project also implemented the components for use and manipulation in cloud infrastructures in formats widely supported to maximize further uptake and integration of components in iKaaS platform instantiations, which allowed for real-life use case validation.

This has also led to a considerable number of publications (53 in number), as well as to 8 standardization contributions and the filling of 6 patents.

Exploitation of iKaaS results by the project partners has been mainly in terms of scientific/research outcomes published in conferences, journals and workshops and building/enhancing the necessary “know-how” in the joint consideration of IoT, Big Data and Cloud. At a later stage these outcomes are expected to also make the way into products and services coming from the industrial partners of the consortium, as well as in academic and research exploitation. The exploitation of the iKaaS results and the “know how” developed also have the potential of leading to spin-off ventures as well as follow-up research initiatives.

In addition, the public companies and public administration authorities participating in the consortium are committed into rolling out services for the general public in their vicinity, leveraging the iKaaS platform. This will serve as a live example of the benefits the iKaaS platform can bring, potentially attracting interest from other, similar in nature, stakeholders.

As iKaaS has made its toolbox publicly available at and this together with the lessons learnt during the validation process can be used by stakeholders of similar nature to the iKaaS project partners to roll out services for their citizens (in the case of Public Administrations) or commercial customers (in case of Health Support Service Providers, Town Management Service Providers as well as Technology/Solutions Providers).

The former can benefit by using the iKaaS toolbox in order to roll-out cloud-based services; the latter can benefit by re-using or even extending iKaaS tools to be used in similar or even different contexts and enhance their product portfolio. In addition, everyday citizens with interest in technology and with suitable home infrastructure can benefit, using iKaaS tools to setup their own home cloud installations, which may then be used for multi-cloud service offerings.
Entities such as Public Administrations, Health Support Service Providers, Town Management Service Providers, these days have access to a wealth of data and control capabilities offered by sensor installations and other IoT devices. However, what is missing sometimes are the necessary tools to interpret and understand what the data mean, what insights they can reveal, what actions would need to be taken in response. Also, additional useful data (e.g. offered by citizens’ devices) may not be available due to technological as well as privacy related reasons. For those, iKaaS can enable bringing in useful data in a privacy preserving manner as well as performing the needed analytics and manipulation of the underlying cloud platform. For Technology/Solutions Providers, iKaaS can serve as a solid basis with analytics and service management tools they can re-use or even adapt and extend to integrate in their solutions offerings. For everyday citizens, iKaaS gives the opportunity to make use of the services offered through e.g. Public Administrations over an iKaaS platform installation; it also gives them the opportunity to make the best use of their -in many cases- substantial but otherwise underutilized own infrastructure and associated data.

Additional privacy preserving data collection and control capabilities through the IoT endpoints, additional hardware resources together with the iKaaS analytics and service management tools can help reduce both CAPEX and OPEX costs. This decrease in CAPEX, OPEX as well as software development costs (since iKaaS tools can be used as a solid basis for further developments) can also lower the barriers for SMEs (both as service providers and as solution providers) to enter the market. In addition to improving the quality of services that can be offered to citizens/customers, these can eventually come at a lower cost for the customer/citizen.

It is also worth noting that as many of the iKaaS developed components are very generic in nature, their applicability is not tight strictly to Smart City scenarios but might as well constitute a basis for cloud based deployments in other application domains (e.g. manufacturing, supply chain etc).
Overall iKaaS approach
iKaaS application areas