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A Conversation with Book Series Editor, Fatos Xhafa

By: , Posted on: June 3, 2022

We asked Series Editor, Prof. Fatos Xhafa, about intelligent sensors, IoT systems and his book series, Intelligent Data-Centric Systems

  •  How long have you been doing research in IoT, intelligent sensors, and networking systems?

My interest on IoT, intelligent sensors, and networking systems started in 2000 when these paradigms emerged. At that time, my research was focused on Grid computing as a platform for massive data processing, and from 2005 on, I published a number of conference and journal articles as well as edited books and proceedings. The concept of “sensor grid” was introduced as a platform that integrates wireless sensor networks with Grid computing, a pre-cursor of Cloud computing. The aim was to support real-time sensor data collection and its processing by massive computing power of Grid platforms, such as PlanetLab Europe, in which I was involved. Initially, sensor data applications were focused on environmental monitoring (world sensing). With the advances in sensor technologies, my interest embraced the research of sensor-based applications using also P2P techniques. I participated in the research and development of the SmartBox concept, which integrated a number of sensors and was used for monitoring student learning activity, patient vital parameters, smart spaces, etc. Results were published from 2008 on, in various IEEE conferences and journals. Since then, I have been actively doing research on various research topics of IoT, intelligent sensors, and networking systems.

From a community service perspective, I have actively participated as a founding member of the IEEE Comm. Society, IEEE Emerging Technical Subcommittee of Internet of Things, and also as a member of the IEEE SMC TC on Computational Collective Intelligence. With the help and support of Elsevier and the great encouragement from the research and academic community in the field, I am the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of the book series, Intelligent Data-Centric Systems, since 2015, and Founder and Editor-in-Chief of the IoT Journal (Internet of Things: Engineering Cyber Physical Human Systems), since 2017. Thanks to the valuable participation and contribution of authors, editors and reviewers, both the book series and the journal have become publication platforms recognized world-wide.


  • What got you interested in researching these areas?

I envisaged since the beginning that sensor collected intelligence would become a main pillar of large-scale internet-based applications. Indeed, nowadays, sensor collected intelligence/IoT Intelligence is found in all application fields with a huge impact on science, technology, businesses, and people’s everyday lives. From a research and development perspective, sensor collected intelligence and IoT are per se a digital ecosystem in which confluence a number of technologies and paradigms: sensor technologies, pervasive computing, Cloud computing, Big Data and Big Data Streams, massive data processing, artificial intelligence and machine learning, security and privacy, trustworthy, etc.  I would say that research on sensor collected intelligence is both exciting and challenging!

  •  Why did you decide to develop the Intelligent Data-Centric Systems book series?

The aim of the book series is to publish foundational and applied work in the field of intelligent data-centric systems. With the exponential increase in data sources – also referred to as the data deluge – in all fields of science, business, health, transportation, social life, etc., data-centric systems have become a must in all modern intelligent internet-based systems and applications. Indeed, data-centric systems are a steppingstone in knowledge-based systems towards maintaining a competitive edge in business, scientific discoveries, etc.

The IDCS book series strives to publish cutting edge research findings and technological developments in the field of intelligent data-centric systems and applications. We’re looking for contributions that bring state of the art methodologies for steering through the deluge of data to build new and novel applications. The application focus of the book volumes makes IDCS unique in that book volumes have to provide case studies, empirical studies and applications in the multi-disciplinary field of smart sensors, smart sensor networks, data analysis, and machine intelligence. Working with real life or simulated data benchmarks is yet another feature that makes the contributions to IDCS series useful to readers as they can find not only methodologies, algorithms, approaches, and designs but also datasets that can help them reproduce the study for problems of interest.

  • What are the benefits of publishing a volume in the IDCS series?

Authors and editors find in this series an excellent publishing venue for their book projects. Authors and editors are fully guided and supported by the Editor-in-Chief and the Elsevier book editor from receipt of their proposal to the final publication of the book volume. Proposals are reviewed by me (the Editor-in-Chief) to ensure novelty, originality, organization, writing style, and overall series fit, as well as the qualifications and suitability of the proposed author/editor teams for the successful development of the book project.  Authors and Editors may be asked to revise their proposal ideas in order to meet the high-quality standards of the book series with a clear-cut focus on intelligent data-centric systems and applications, as well as a truly international collection of reputed editors and authors contributing to the book. Proposals that have potential for publication can be revised (if needed, a number of times) and I am happy to work with authors and editors until all quality criteria (at proposal level) are met.

The Elsevier publishing team supports authors and editors during the whole process of preparing their manuscripts and volumes. They are provided with templates to better organize chapters and they receive feedback at different stages of the process to achieve high quality manuscripts and meet agreed upon publication schedules. Authors and editors use the EMSS system (Elsevier’s Electronic Manuscript Submission System) which offers a manuscript workflow to facilitate the communication, quality, and timeliness of the publication.

  • You have gathered together a considerable team of Volume Editors and Authors. What qualities do you think contribute to being a successful Volume Editor or Lead-Author?

Editing a volume in the IDCS series requires that editors go beyond the normal publication profile as it requires the capability of conceiving a volume theme and scope that are relevant to the research and academic communities and contribute to the larger body of knowledge. Our volume editors, therefore, have a proliferative publication/research record and a visionary perspective on current and emerging developments. In other cases, we seek editors to publish more specialized volumes, to cover a niche in a concrete and applied theme. For both kinds of volumes, our editors are well positioned and renowned in their communities and are thus able to attract the most qualified authors to contribute to their volumes.

  • Lastly, what do you think are some of the most interesting research challenges we will see tackled in this field over the next ten years?

The field of sensor collected intelligence, since its inception, has experienced a very fast and amazing development in various regards: fundamental knowledge, technology support and applications. In the coming years, sensor collected intelligence will address new research challenges, among which a salient one is achieving intelligence at all levels of the Cloud-to-thing continuum. Indeed, while in the recent past, intelligence has been impregnated at rather high levels of Cloud and Data centers, in the coming years, intelligence will be pushed to lower levels of Fog and Edge computing, i.e., to devices at the Edges of the Internet and, therefore, sensors and other devices will be relevant to making intelligent decisions in real time. Fully achieving this shift of intelligence from large to small scale/low level, and integrating intelligence along various levels of Cloud-to-thing continuum will require research and development efforts and, of course, will promote publication of the latest research and development findings. The IDCS series is committed to be a flagship publication and will bring to readers and practitioners the latest advances in the field.

The IDCS book series was launched by Elsevier in 2015, with its 1st volume published in April 2016. Since then, the book series has regularly published authored and edited volumes (30 volumes to date). For more information about the IDCS book series, please visit Elsevier 

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