Partner for “Deutschland sicher im Netz” and BAGSO
The Deutschland sicher im Netz e.V. (DsiN – Making Germany Safe on the Net) association has served as a central point of contact for consumers and small businesses interested in the topics of IT security and data privacy for twelve years now. Thomas Kremer, Deutsche Telekom Board Member for Data Privacy, Legal Affairs and Compliance, is chairman of the board at DsiN. As a member of the association, we are committed to working with other companies and organizations on projects such as the IT-Sicherheit@Mittelstand series of workshops (IT security for SMEs), the Digitale Sicherheit (Digital Safety) campaign network, and Digital-Kompass (Digital Compass). We are also contributing to the Sicherheitsbarometer (SiBa, Safety Barometer) app for digital self-protection.
Furthermore, we are supporting the project Digitale Nachbarschaft (DsiN, Digital Neighborhood). This trains people as volunteer IT ambassadors who will pass on their knowledge and expertise to neighbors and colleagues. The project once again showcased its work during the launch event of the “Woche des bürgerschaftlichen Engagements” (Community Volunteering Week) in Berlin in September 2018. Our own company initiative 1001 TRUTHS, which aims to promote responsible media usage, also presented its aims and strategies there.
As a member of the “Security, protection, and trust for society and business” platform, which is part of Germany’s national Digital Summit, we worked with the DsiN to develop a new educational tool for artificial intelligence. KInsights! is an interactive showroom that offers an insight into the latest AI technologies. Various experts (including scientists, ethicists, data protection officers) offer their views on practical current scenarios from day-to-day life that range from AI-controlled spam filters and chatbots to disaster management using AI. The tool was unveiled to the public by Prof. Günter Krings, Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Community, at the Digital Summit on December 4, 2018.
We work with BAGSO, the German National Association of Senior Citizens’ Organizations, to promote media literacy among seniors. As a partner, we sponsor the Goldener Internetpreis (Golden Internet Award). The award recognizes people over the age of 60 who use the internet skillfully and help others to get started in the online world. The last round of prizes in 2017 included a special “Letting ideas grow” award for the Hamburg-based “KulturistenHoch2” (“Culturists squared”) project. The project, which brings younger and older people together, received support through 2018 and beyond, including advice on how to expand into other cities. In November 2018, all the prize winners met up again in Berlin to review how their projects from the previous year had gone. The next award ceremony is planned for November 2019.
In 2018, we again took part in the Deutscher Seniorentag (German Senior Citizens’ Day), which BAGSO organizes every three years. During the event, we showcased products and services that are aimed at people aged 65 years and over. These included mobile telecommunications, fixed-line and MagentaEINS offerings, special apps for seniors, and security products for Magenta SmartHome. Visitors to our booth had the chance to use a variety of services. For example, we had two technicians available to set up mobile devices and answer technical questions. As an advisory board member, we are also involved in Digital-Kompass (Digital Compass), a joint project by BAGSO and DsiN. Digital-Kompass uses materials and regular meetings on digital issues to support internet guides who help seniors get online and explore the internet. A total of 75 Digital-Kompass locations are also being set up across Germany. Internet guides based at these locations create a trustworthy (learning) environment for seniors and help them try out digital services and build confidence in using the internet. The Digital-Kompass locations are also hubs for others who want to get involved in the project or learn new skills with a view to passing them on.
Innovative solutions to social challenges
Technology can also be used to address social challenges. That is why we promote the development of appropriate solutions and educational offerings. These include, for example, the IRMGARD app, which helps adults learn to read and write in German. It is aimed at both German speakers who have difficulties with reading and writing and people who are learning German as a foreign language. The following related developments also took shape in the year under review:
Sea Hero Quest – baseline study confirms positive contribution to dementia research
Dementia is a huge medical challenge. Some 47 million people suffer from dementia today – a number that is set to triple by 2050. Our “Game for Good” initiative aims to help scientists develop new procedures so they can diagnose dementia earlier. Over the last three years, we have worked with scientists and games developers to create the cellphone game “Sea Hero Quest” (2016) and virtual-reality game “Sea Hero Quest VR” (2017). The games collect anonymous data about the spatial navigation skills of players, since disorientation in place is one of the early signs of dementia. In 2018, a baseline study run by University College London and the University of East Anglia in the UK confirmed that the games are helping advance global research into dementia.
More than four million people around the world are already playing Sea Hero Quest and thereby helping to support dementia research. The virtual reality version “Sea Hero Quest VR” gathers particularly accurate data about players’ sense of spatial orientation. Collected anonymously, the data is being continuously evaluated by scientists to provide a basis for hopefully developing an application for the early detection of dementia by 2022.
The VR game can be downloaded for free at the Oculus Store and in Google Daydream. The mobile game is no longer available in the App Store or Google Play as the scientists have sufficient data and the quantity and quality of this data have exceeded expectations by far.
Educational Robotics in Greece
COSMOTE contributes to a better world for all through the development of digital skills of children from all over the country. Over the last 5 years, COSMOTE has been a strategic partner of Non-Profit Organization for Educational Robotics and Science WRO Hellas, implementing a series of initiatives intended to disseminate educational robotics and STEM (Science Technology Engineering Mathematics) educational methodology throughout the Greek educational system. The following initiatives were launched in 2018:
- “ROBOGIRL”, the first Greek fiction movie about educational robotics and the experience children gain from it was presented by COSMOTE. It is a family comedy about the power of the team and the capability of children to implement even the most incredible ideas. The movie tells the story of a young girl named Sofia, who although she is not associated with Science decides to sign up for the course on educational robotics. The challenges she faces enable her to discover new things about herself, her friends, her capabilities, and about the achievements a person can accomplish with commitment and perseverance. ROBOGIRL premiered on the COSMOTE YouTube channel and was aired on COSMOTE TV in December 2018. To watch the full movie, click here.
- The Pan-Hellenic Educational Robotics Competition for Primary, Junior High and High School Students 2018 was completed with more than 3,500 children taking part. More than 1,500 teachers were trained to enable the student teams to design and build a complete robotic model. Moreover, the digitized projects from the educational robotics competition were uploaded on the WRO Hellas Digital Platform for educational documents to provide unlimited access to knowledge for every teacher in the country. In September, the Pan-Hellenic Educational Robotics Competition for Primary, Junior High and Senior High School Students 2019 was launched. The competition will finish in March 2019. A new pilot category for kindergarten children is included in this competition for the first time.
- The National WRO Competition 2018 was organized with more than 600 students participating from all over Greece. The students tried to provide solutions for critical issues facing our planet such as sustainable food production and food security with the aim of achieving the United Nations' No 2 Sustainable Development Goal of "Zero Hunger" by using their robotics structures. The winning teams from Greece took part in the 14th World Robot Olympiad WRO 2018 held in Thailand under the topic "Food Matters" in November. Two teams won the fourth place, and three more teams claimed significant distinctions.
- CodeAthon is a new initiative to enhance coding for students. It was organized in the context of Europe Code Week 2018 in October in 4 Greek cities. The aim is to encourage their creativity in programming, to help them develop programming skills, and to empower team working. The 300 students aged 8 to 16 years old participated in this initiative and completed an unfinished electronic game, within 4 hours. The projects of the participating teams were uploaded on an open platform to help other children learn about coding.