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Personalised Healthcare, one algorithm at a time, Siemens Healthineers

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What is Siemens Healthineers

Data is at the beginning, middle, end of healthcare’s future. Some feel like healthcare is playing catch up to other industries that digitally transformed earlier, such as financial services, but I see healthcare as perfectly positioned to benefit from a raft of proven business cases and technology. That’s where Siemens Healthineers come in.

I had the good fortune to interview Peter Shen, VP Business Development, Digital Health, Siemens Healthineers, to talk about everything that’s happening in his world of healthcare technology at the moment. You can listen to our full podcast conversation at the link below. 

What is Siemens Healthineers

A few years ago, Siemens global decided that their healthcare division, which has for decades produced some of the world’s best imaging and diagnostic equipment, would do even better if it had more freedom to explore new technologies and partnerships. And so Siemens Healthineers was born: Engineers + Health sciences on a mission to best leverage new technologies to help clinicians and their patients.

Siemens are renowned for their ingenuity and innovation but even they can’t do it all, and they’re well aware of that. Their goal in building the Healthineers was not to be limited. They didn’t WANT to become specialists in data infrastructure, they wanted to further develop their own unique capabilities in health sciences algorithmic problem solving. 

As Peter says, “Our focus is on the healthcare side. We needed a partner for our digitalisation strategy to help make sure the infrastructure was there.” So, they invited Intel to their newly built AI think tank in the US and had a conversation that turned into an incredibly fruitful partnership. 

Together, Siemens Healthineers and Intel are working to help clinicians expand precision medicine to be more accurate in their diagnosis, to transform how they deliver care, and above all, to improve the patient experience, based on the things that matter to patients.

Did I mention data?

Siemens Healthineers Benefits

The Healthineers engineering team processes enormous amounts of data, piles of it. They’ll look at a patient scenario, such as a respiratory issue, and think through the algorithms they could run to try to diagnose the condition. They work backwards to determine the data set and data requirements and forward to develop the algorithms. They might decide that 30 or even 40 algorithms are required to arrive at useful diagnostic information for the doctor to review. And those algorithms have to run in an enormously timely manner, because they are also trying to reduce turn time – between running tests and having not just the results but the interpretations in hand as quickly as possible, because that’s important to patients and time could be of the essence. 

Digital twins are becoming part of this exercise, too. In order for the models to generate useful diagnostic information, they have to ingest a full picture of the patient’s current health and medical history. Just imagine the memory, storage and compute required for that! Well, the Healthineers engineers were tremendously thankful that they didn’t have to – they could work side by side with Intel engineers, sharing their use cases and requirements and leveraging the tremendous compute power of Intel solutions to make it happen. 

I can only imagine the “eureka” moments between the engineering team, sheer magic. Peter confirms: “These are really fun conversations,” he says, “Our engineers can run as many simulations as they need to get the results clinicians want,” to make an accurate timely diagnosis.

But back to data. As with many other industries, there’s almost too much of it, and it’s not in the right format for analysis. “Providers need to use this [clinical and operational data] but first they have to extract it,” says Peter. And Siemen’s devices are contributing a lot of data too. Part of the challenge is then, “how to make those devices deliver the right information back to providers so that they can make decisions. The data varies widely from a static xray to a beating heart that you’re trying to figure out the volume of blood going through the ventricles and you’re trying to do calculations while it’s moving. Trying to ingest all of these different types of data and draw conclusions from it is difficult.” 

Fortunately, I feel as though the patient themselves is on the side of technology advancements in healthcare. We are all tethered to a digital device, we’re comfortable with digital information and we expect healthcare to be part of that cultural shift. For example, in Australia, with our far flung population, we’d absolutely welcome advances in remote care. Peter talks about specialists being able to remotely operate an advanced imaging device located thousands of miles away – I think that’s fantastic. Instead of flying patients into the big city as we do now, we could “teleport” the doctor to the patient.

I get a very strong “can-do” spirit from Peter. Some of the challenges his team face are specific to healthcare but some are being tackled in other industries as well, such as image and video analysis, and I’m confident that their startup mentality and interest in partnerships will continue to help them solve this problem more quickly through co-create thinking. I encourage you to listen to our full conversation and let me know what you think. My thanks to Peter and the entire team at Siemens Healthineers and Intel for making the interview possible. 

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NEC recognised as Top Ten Champion in AI Ethics & Governance Certification

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NEC Asia Pacific, the regional headquarters for Tokyo head quartered information and communications technology provider NEC Corporation, has been recognised as one of the Singapore Computer Society’s (SCS) inaugural top ten champions in “AI Ethics & Governance Certification” during the 2022 Tech3 Forum, an annual business & technology event organised and run by SCS in partnership with Singapore’s Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA).

This certification recognises efforts to encourage professional development in AI Ethics & Governance in the workplace, and commitment towards building an effective and trusted AI ecosystem.

As a result of the pace at which AI adoption across all facets of society is increasing, there is a very real need to foster public trust in AI, to allow organisations to unlock its full potential.

All nations governments and societies have of late engaged in broad discussion and global debate pertaining to the topics surrounding Artificial Intelligence, none more so that those relating to data privacy and how privacy as a whole plays a role in relation to AI utilisation and advancement of related technologies and services.

In response to the need to address such challenges, in particular those which may arise from the rapid developments and advancement in AI and technology taking place in today’s world, NEC established a Data Distribution Strategy Office in April 2017.

This was closely followed the following year by the establishment of NEC’s Digital Trust Business Strategy Division in October 2018, and in 2019, NEC also unveiled the formation of the NEC Group AI and Human Rights Principles. NEC has since developed business activities based on those principles.

As a leading tech society for industry professionals in Singapore, the SCS received support from IMDA in in 2020 to develop the world’s first AI Ethics Body of Knowledge in anticipation of the wider use of AI.

Following this, the SCS announced in 2021 a new joint AI Ethics & Governance Certification programme with Nanyang Technological University (NTU), with the aim of guiding and educating businesses and professionals on a wide range of topics relating to the development, deployment and use of responsible AI.

In relation to being awarded the SCS AI Ethics & Governance Certification, NEC APAC’s Managing Director, Teh Chong Mien stated, “NEC has aligned our mission based on Singapore’s Smart Nation vision. and we are committed to helping Singapore achieve its goals outlined in its National AI Strategy. We will do our best to realise a safer and brighter world by engaging the relevant stakeholders to build a robust digital trust framework based on ethics and human-centric technology.”

These principles will guide employees of NEC to prioritise privacy and human rights considerations in each and every stage of the NEC Group’s business operations along with compliance with all relevant laws and regulations globally.

In accordance with these principles, the NEC Group is committed to the three following initiatives:

  1. Ensure that all products and services are implemented and utilised by NEC employees, customers and partners appropriately
  2. Continue to develop advanced technology and talent to further promote AI utilisation
  3. Engage with a range of stakeholders to build partnerships and collaborate with closely

NEC has in fact enrolled its Singapore-based leadership team and their team of developers in the SCS and NTU certification programme, to capitalise on the many synergies between NEC’s Group AI and Human Rights Principles which prioritise privacy and human rights in relation to the utilisation of AI and biometrics data.

SCS President, Sam Liew, was recently quoted to have said, “We are heartened to have partners such as NEC play a leading role in supporting Singapore’s AI ecosystem, and we welcome all organisations to join us in growing the pool of AI Ethics professionals in Singapore.”

NEC promotes its Social Solution Business through the utilisation of advanced AI solutions from “NEC the WISE” (refer to Note 2), IoT technologies, and “Bio-Idiom” (refer to Note 3), which enables instant authentication using face, iris, fingerprint, palm print, pulse, and acoustic data.

Further information available via the full NEC press release:

http://bit.ly/nec-scs-ai-ethics-award-2022

About NEC Corporation

NEC Corporation is a leader in the integration of IT and network technologies that benefit businesses and people around the world. The NEC Group globally provides “Solutions for Society” that promote the safety, security, efficiency and equality of society. Under the company’s corporate message of “Orchestrating a brighter world,” NEC aims to help solve a wide range of challenging issues and to create new social value for the changing world of tomorrow.

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Rebounding for the data-driven fate with FPGA and eASICS

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Field Programmable Gate Array Technology

Data is now the new driving force of the modern world. How well your business performs or what its rank could be on the performance list entirely depends on how you leverage the data available, involving emerging tools such as ML, AI, and cloud! Such forces have, in turn, lit up a stand for Field Programmable Gate Arrays (FPGAs). 

Lately, I have had a great fortune to sit down and have an in-depth discussion with Jim Dworkin, the senior director of the cloud business unit in the Programmable Solutions Group at Intel. During our discussion, even Jim asserted that in order to unlock the potential of data, we need to embrace the latest FPGA technology. 

Further, having the modern architecture out into the right place now could easily uncover the paths to get things right. Perhaps, we need to educate ourselves on the ‘hardwiring’ of data flow to ensure we can appropriately leverage the power of data, speed time to market, diminish the costs of ownership, and a lot more that could take the businesses to new heights. 

For example, the technology Intel has been offering has virtually evolved “off-the-shelf”, so competent than ever before that it can now solve specific infrastructure or business problems.

With the embracement of FPGA latest technology and eASICs(the Intel tech discussed above), there has been an acceleration in infrastructure use cases (SmartNICs). So, what is SmartNICs? Well, SmartNICs is a programmable accelerator. It holds the capability to centre all the networking data with the utmost security and proffering storage flexibility and efficiency at the same time. 

Having SmartNIC onboard businesses hold enough power to handle more refined infrastructure workloads using cloud hosts, churning of wastage of time, and saving more resources. Besides, SmartNICs also furnish great value towards nurturing virtualized assistance, such as multi-tenant shared cloud and more.

Perhaps with hyper-scalers’ mushrooming, the overhead of network infrastructure might turn daunting. But the applications of FPGA have helped manage that. 

Apart from this, Intel has also come up with FPGA cloud SmartNIC platforms that replicate the hyper-scalers’ used architectures. So, how does it operate? 

This platform integrates Intel high-performance Stratix 10 FPGA with an Intel Xeon D processor that works together on the SmartNIC card, enabling virtual switching by offering the Tier-2 data centres a mass-market solution. 

Intel has also been heavily sponsoring more efficient AI via recommender systems and natural language processing. It has even established a more robust form of FPGA, which is able to interpret voice coder inputs. 

Jim contends that the enactment of a GPU manages to be modal and established on the micro-architecture constructed around it, irrespective of their power. Therefore if it shifts from an optimization point, latencies might rise, negatively impacting the performance of speech processing. 

FPGA applications are virtually inexhaustible, particularly with FPGA transition reaching up to par with software programming in ease of usage. 

Jim is optimistic about exploding evolution. He believes people wouldn’t be asking what SmartNIC platforms are. Instead would be keener towards knowing how transformative it could be. But if you ask me, I would still say the real excitement lies in accessing Intel’s technology and then jumping to Microsoft Azure to revise and enjoy leaner and faster service completely.

With his extensive product knowledge of large-scale integration work, Jim puts it; we must decode problems at a strategic level and not in a microcosm.

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Conversation With Jim Dworkin, Senior Director Cloud Business Unit, Intel PSG

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I recently had the opportunity to catch up with Jim Dworkin, who is the Sr. Director of Cloud Business Unit at Intel PSG, to discuss the recent news, insights, FPGA trends, and offerings surrounding Field Programable Gate Arrays (FPGAs) from Intel and related topics such as Data Centres, Infrastructure from Servers to Networks, to the Internet of Things, Edge networking  Artificial Intelligence, compute and much more.

In this episode of our podcast show, Jim and I delve into a wide range of business and technology insights around how key CXO and Senior Business & Technology decision-makers can obtain immediate real-world business benefits by taking advantage of the tremendous technology and supporting ecosystem or partners, integrators, and others and Intel teams globally – this show covers many recent trends in FPGA is you can not miss, please do tune in it today!

Here are a few of the important points from our show:

  1. Latest macro FGPA Trends driving development/adoption of FPGAs/eASICs

We kick off with Jim sharing insights around what he and his team at Intel are currently seeing worldwide, as far as the latest macro trends driving the development/adoption of FPGAs/eASICs are concerned.

Jim also clarifies what an FPGA is, what Intel’s eASICS are, and where they each fit in the respective spaces around development, design, implementation, going into production, and more – a phenomenal overview to set the scene for this fantastic discussion.

  1. Obstacles & happenings around the adoption of FPGAs/eASICs and market readiness

I ask Jim to share his take on the key hurdles & opportunities he and his team at Intel PSG, and related teams at intel, are seeing worldwide concerning the uptake and adoption of FPGAs/eASICs and market readiness.

  1. How Intel customers/partners see success with FPGAs/eASICs

Jim gives us an extraordinary briefing level summary of how Intel customers and partners see success with FPGAs/eASICs, as well as some great actionable takeaways listeners can put in place within their own organisations to gain real business and technology benefits over a wide range of key areas in both Information Technology as well as Operational Technology systems and environments.

This conversation covers a broad range of news and detail about Intel’s FPGA solutions business, and technology decision-makers should pay attention. PushPLAY now and tune into this great conversation. If you have any questions, reach out at any time via any of the usual channels such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and others. We’d love to start a conversation and perhaps connect you with the best people at Intel to support your organisation’s outcomes.

This podcast covering Intel FPGA News was created in association with Intel.

Explore:

 Intel® FPGA Homepage: https://intel.ly/3gRRXm5

– Real-Time Text To Speech Synthesis Using Intel® Stratix® 10 NX FPGA (Video): https://intel.ly/37pjDLS

– Real-Time Text To Speech Synthesis Using Intel® Stratix® 10 NX FPGA (White Paper): https://intel.ly/3mo5PW3

– Pushing AI Boundaries with Scalable Compute-Focused FPGAs (White Paper): https://intel.ly/3gRZLnI

 

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