Experimentation Platforms are strongly advocated as an important component of NGI innovation. The Fire Study reinforces this, emphasizing that heterogeneous, integrated and real-world experimentation environments or resources are important, as their inclusion early in the validation and end-to-end testing of new protocols and services incorporates fast feedback. The study goes on to recommend that new experimentation areas should open up to “include a pan European blockchain, including robotic devices, and the establishment of mixed experimentation environments with large numbers of heterogeneous devices with IoT programmability, and Large Scale Streams”.
PSNC workshop on NGI concurs with the above described recommendations of The Fire Study. The workshop adds that since it is expensive many a times to validate end-to-end real-life functioning of a service or product especially for start-ups, easy and affordable access to experimentation infrastructure (hardware, software, clouds) and resources should be provided as a service. This can be particularly true for new and upcoming technologies like blockchain.
The Fire Study also supports existing pattern of open calls and experimentation funding targeted towards attracting innovative SMEs and start-ups to test new networks/protocols, and enable prototyping for rapid innovations. Hub4NGI D2.1 deliverable also recommends that in addition to the current open calls, the experimentation funding mechanisms offer flexible funding to accommodate SMEs that need experimentation in short order. This can be achieved through means like Responsive mode funding – where applications can be made at any time with each being judged on its own merits rather than against other applicants, and fast turnaround of experimentation funding decisions.
Hub4NGI D2.1 deliverable recognizes heterogeneous experimentation platforms as important element for innovation in NGI related themes.