In 2019 the New Zealand Government started a Data Science Investment project
In June 2019 Open Parallel registered a proposal leading a consortium towards securing funding, and -if successful, develop state-of-the-art technology platforms through the seven years of the project. Our proposal at the time looked at the intersection of edge computing with HPC applied to agriculture with data processed in real time. Below is the 300 words proposal brief.
Whakarongo ki te whenua (Listen to the land) (L2L)
What the project will deliver
We will develop software and processes to combine state-of-the-art edge computing infrastructure with large-scale data curation, machine learning and computer vision to provide real-time interpreted data to primary producers. We will open-source our IP while ensuring that information owners’ rights are respected.
Recent developments in sensors, semi-autonomous mobile platforms, communications, and large-scale computing are converging to make possible multi-scale collection and integration of massive data sets. New Zealand must leverage them to remain competitive and to improve environmental management.
The real world domain: Agriculture
We will address the use and integration of land based environmental, climate and marine management data. Consultation will define our priorities, -particularly with iwi, to ensure that our work is relevant and culturally sensitive, building on existing knowledge.
The data science challenge
Core challenges are heterogeneity and integration. Complex spatial and temporal variation require learning models that are adaptive to our heterogeneous terrain. Today data are gathered at different scales and at different frequencies by different organisations using different types of devices. This creates an integration challenge: digesting data at the local scale, using it to update regional and nationwide scale models, and feeding thus learned models back to the local scale to inform local inference. Real-time advanced modelling and simulation for quick decision-making requires significant computing power.
Why this group
We have a unique blend of research and commercial experience in agritech and advanced computing. For 15 years Open Parallel has been working with multicore technologies, and in global endeavours like the SKA—a next-generation supercomputing and mega data science project—establishing our network of senior associates from leading organisations. They will be brought to collaborate with New Zealand Crown Research Institutes and universities, alongside our researchers from PlantTech, Otago University et al.
Contact Open Parallel for further information
Whakarongo ki te whenua (L2L) consortium members
Open Parallel leads a global consortium – Members
- University of Otago – Associate Professor David Eyers, Dr Stefanie Zollmann
- PlantTech Research Institute – Professor Ian Yule (L2L Science Lead)
- NIWA (National Institute of Weather and Atmospheric Research) – Dr Jochen Schmidt (Chief Scientist – Environmental Information), Dr MS Srinivasan
- Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) – Dr Vicki Compton, Collier Isaacs, Lily Li
- Tui Ora (Taranaki iwi) – Dr William Edwards, Hayden Wano, Steve Perry
- Catalyst IT – Catalyst Cloud
- Bodeker Scientific – Dr Greg Bodeker
- Iris Data Science – Greg Peyroux, Benoit Auvray, Masha Mikhisor
- MetService – MetOcean
- Pacific Northwest National Labs (PNNL) – Dr James Ang, Chief Scientist for Computing
- University of Chicago – Professor Ian Foster
- Indiana University – Professor Geoffrey C. Fox
- Oak Ridge National Labs (ORNL) – Dr Jeffrey S. Vetter
- National University of Singapore (NUS) – Dr John Gustafson
- Argonne National Labs (ANL) – Dr Pete Beckman
- South African Weather Service (SAWS) – Dr Mary-Jane Bopape, Dr Joel Botai, Dr Michael Mengistu
International Industry Partners
- Arm (UK)
- 96boards / Linaro (UK) – Dr Yang Zhang, Director 96boards
- Ubotica Technologies (Ireland) – Fintan Buckley, CEO
- John Deere Inc. (US)
Contact Open Parallel to express your interest about the L2L consortium
Through August and September 2019, L2L consortium members actively participated in the “All of Government agritech taskforce roadshow” in different locations within New Zealand.
We contributed input to the consultation initiated by the New Zealand Government towards the development of an Industry Transformation Plan for the agritech sector.
- New Zealand Government (MBIE) new approach to Industry Policy Strategy (released in July 2019) is available here
- Agritech in New Zealand – Towards an Industry Transformation Plan for agritech (draft strategy -published in July 2019) is available here