The first International Innovation and Technology Fair at the Service of Care (FITECU), organized by the SIVI Cluster and the Ministry of Family and Equal Opportunities of the Regional Government of Castile and Leon, was successfully held between February 23 and 25 in Villardeciervos (Zamora).

The event was a great opportunity to share experiences, opinions, and visions for the future of a wide variety of technologies among prestigious national and international speakers. This was highlighted by the presentations of Kenji Matsui, Director of the Robotics and Design Center of the Osaka Institute of Technology; Jorgina Díaz Torres, Director of Business Development at Alisys; Miguel Ángel Salichs, Head of the Technical Secretariat of the Spanish Robotics Technology Platform, and Álvaro Sánchez García, Project Director of the Social Technologies Foundation, and many other experts in artificial intelligence and social robotics who shared a round table with Juan Manuel Corchado, President of the AIR Institute and Director of the IoT Digital Innovation Hub.

Roundtable reflection on AI and social robotics at FITECU

At the roundtable, entitled “Advances and Opportunities in Artificial Intelligence, Social Robotics and Technology for Personal Support,” Corchado moderated and opened discussions with the aforementioned participants. Questions ranged from the future of these areas and their financing to the challenges of making social robotics more accessible and reliable for the elderly, thus addressing technology at the service of care, a fundamental part of the fair’s objective.

In this regard, Kenji Matsui assured that current technology is essential to improve the mental and physical health of the elderly: ” The Japanese society is accepting pet robots very well and, thanks to Artificial Intelligence tools such as ChatGPT, these robots can end up being more useful and intelligent”. Alvaro Sanchez commented that in Spain and other Western countries there is not as much acceptance of robots among the elderly, but this intelligence “will gradually emerge from laboratories to provide real service, and that is when we have to start exploring which robots are useful and for whom”. For her part, Jorgina Díaz believes that the best solution for robots to be massively deployed in homes is “to focus on their use in assistance, entrepreneurial and scientific services and not just as a business”. For Miguel Ángel Salichs “the ideal would be to have a caregiver close to an elderly person at all times, but this is impossible to achieve, and this is what robots can do“. Finally, it was Juan Manuel Corchado who concluded the debate by ratifying the enormous capacity of these technologies to improve our lives and the necessity of “making it easier for the elderly to interact with them and overcome their fear”.

Artificial Intelligence and Health

In addition to the round tables, FITECU featured the participation of experts in the form of international presentations. One of them was “Artificial Intelligence Applied to Health“, by Corchado, Professor from the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Department at the University of Salamanca. He described to those in attendance – both in situ and online – the evolution of AI since its emergence, the importance of technologies such as Blockchain, Big Data, Edge Computing and especially the use of Digital Twins in the field of patient care and monitoring. “Digital twins are increasingly implemented in the medical sector and allow us to know how a patient will respond to different operations,” he explained.

Juan Manuel Corchado during his presentation at the international fair FITECU. Source: Puentia

Presentation of Projects

Juan Manuel Corchado presented some of the projects his team is working on at the AIR Institute. Among them the CO2 Project, which monitors indoor air quality by means of small devices, and Deep Intelligence, a tool for Fintech, IoT, Smart Cities, Smart Grids, Biomedical Analysis, Logistics and Industry 4.0 that allows to select optimal AI and Machine Learning algorithms to analyze datasets. He also spoke about AI Sandbox, the project to create an EU regulatory framework for Artificial Intelligence carried out through a collaboration between competent authorities, which also aims to define a series of best practices.

The very first FITECU event has proven to be a space for meeting, work, reflection, and debate that facilitates the dissemination of knowledge and provides a valuable opportunity to share experiences and challenges among technology professionals and colleagues.

We would like to thank the media that have covered our participation in the fair:

Posted by Juan M. Corchado

Juan Manuel Corchado (15 May 1971, Salamanca, Spain) is Professor at the University of Salamanca. He has been Vice-Rector for Research from 2013 to 2017 and Director of the Science Park of the University of Salamanca. Elected as Dean of the Faculty of Science twice, he holds a PhD in Computer Science from the University of Salamanca and a PhD in Artificial Intelligence from the University of the West of Scotland. He leads the renowned BISITE (Bioinformatics, Intelligent Systems and Educational Technology) Research Group, created in 2000. Director of the IoT Digital Innovation Hub and President of the AIR Institute, J. M. Corchado is also Visiting Professor at the Osaka Institute of Technology since January 2015, Visiting Professor at the Universiti Malaysia Kelantan and Member of the Advisory Group on Online Terrorist Propaganda of the European Counter Terrorism Centre (EUROPOL). J. M. Corchado has been president of the IEEE Systems, Man and Cybernetics Society, and academic coordinator of the University Institute for Research in Art and Animation Technology at the University of Salamanca, as well as researcher at the Universities of Paisley (UK), Vigo (Spain) and the Plymouth Marine Laboratory (UK). He currently combines all his activity with the direction of Master programmes in Security, Digital Animation, Mobile Telephony, Information Systems Management, Internet of Things, Social Media, 3D Design and Printing, Blockchain, Z System, Industry 4.0, Agile Project Management, and Smart Cities & Intelligent Buildings, at the University of Salamanca and his work as editor-in-chief of the journals ADCAIJ (Advances in Distributed Computing and Artificial Intelligence Journal), OJCST (Oriental Journal of Computer Science and Technology) or Electronics MDPI (Computer Science & Engineering section). J. M. Corchado mainly works on projects related to Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Blockchain, IoT, Fog Computing, Edge Computing, Smart Cities, Smart Grids and Sentiment Analysis. He has recently been included in the board of trustees of the AstraZeneca Foundation, along with other health professionals and researchers recognised for bringing scientific knowledge closer to society.