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Informatics, Volume 4, Issue 4 (December 2017)

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Editorial

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Open AccessEditorial Advancing Social Media and Mobile Technologies in Healthcare Education
Informatics 2017, 4(4), 35; doi:10.3390/informatics4040035
Received: 15 September 2017 / Revised: 27 September 2017 / Accepted: 27 September 2017 / Published: 28 September 2017
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Abstract
Social media and mobile technologies are important new tools in healthcare education, both to assist healthcare professionals learn and maintain their craft, and for the education of patients and families [...]
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(This article belongs to the Special Issue Social Media and Mobile Technologies for Healthcare Education)

Research

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Open AccessArticle Health Literacy for the General Public: Making a Case for Non-Trivial Visualizations
Informatics 2017, 4(4), 33; doi:10.3390/informatics4040033
Received: 3 July 2017 / Revised: 18 August 2017 / Accepted: 13 September 2017 / Published: 23 September 2017
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Abstract
Health literacy is concerned with the degree to which individuals can access and understand information to make health decisions. The multifaceted nature of health data presents challenges for individuals seeking to improve their understanding of health. To aid health literacy efforts, we have
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Health literacy is concerned with the degree to which individuals can access and understand information to make health decisions. The multifaceted nature of health data presents challenges for individuals seeking to improve their understanding of health. To aid health literacy efforts, we have developed HealthConfection, a visualization tool that uses elaborate and non-typical interactive visualizations to represent health data. In this paper, we report on two studies we conducted with HealthConfection. In the first study, we investigate whether individuals can learn to use non-typical visualizations, and the impact that short, minimalist video tutorials will have on participants’ understanding of the visualizations. The findings from this study suggest that individuals can learn to use non-typical visualizations and that participants who used the tutorials achieved higher scores than those without tutorials. This work indicates that non-typical visualizations are a viable option for conveying complex datasets. Based on this foundation, we conducted a second study to investigate if non-typical visualizations can improve health literacy for the general public. Results show that participants who used HealthConfection achieved higher scores than those who did not interact with the tool. Our work suggests that non-typical visualizations can be used to improve health literacy. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Assessing the Cost Impact of Multiple Transportation Modes to Enhance Sustainability in an Integrated, Two Stage, Automotive Supply Chain
Informatics 2017, 4(4), 34; doi:10.3390/informatics4040034
Received: 25 June 2017 / Revised: 10 September 2017 / Accepted: 25 September 2017 / Published: 28 September 2017
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Abstract
As the automotive industry has been striving to enhance its efficiency, competitiveness, and sustainability, great focus is often placed on opportunities for improving its supply chain operations. We study the effect of introducing multiple modes of transportation in an industry-motivated production and transportation
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As the automotive industry has been striving to enhance its efficiency, competitiveness, and sustainability, great focus is often placed on opportunities for improving its supply chain operations. We study the effect of introducing multiple modes of transportation in an industry-motivated production and transportation problem involving short-term automotive supply chain planning. We consider multiple, heterogeneous modes of transportation that offer a cost vs. delivery time option to the manufacturer. Having multiple modes of transportation in the system promotes supply chain sustainability. We present an integer linear programming model that captures the availability of multiple transportation modes. We then provide a solution approach based on a hybrid simulated annealing algorithm that we use to analyze the problem. Experimental results demonstrate the impact of additional transportation mode lead times compared to costs in the integrated supply chain. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Decision Support for Sustainable Supply Chain Design and Management)
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Open AccessArticle Multiple-Criteria Decision Support for a Sustainable Supply Chain: Applications to the Fashion Industry
Informatics 2017, 4(4), 36; doi:10.3390/informatics4040036
Received: 30 June 2017 / Revised: 27 September 2017 / Accepted: 9 October 2017 / Published: 12 October 2017
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Abstract
With increasing globalization and international cooperation, the importance of sustainability management across supply chains has received much attention by companies across various industries. Companies therefore strive to implement effective and integrated sustainable supply chain management initiatives to improve their operational and economic performance
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With increasing globalization and international cooperation, the importance of sustainability management across supply chains has received much attention by companies across various industries. Companies therefore strive to implement effective and integrated sustainable supply chain management initiatives to improve their operational and economic performance while also minimizing unnecessary damage to the environment and maintaining their social reputation and images. The paper presents an easy-to-use decision-support approach based on multiple-criteria decision-making (MCDM) methodologies that aim to help companies develop effective models for timely decision-making involving sustainable supply chain management strategies. The proposed approach can be used by practitioners to ultimately build a comprehensive Analytic Network Process model that will adequately capture and reveal all the interrelationships and interdependency among the elements in the problem, which is often a very difficult task. To facilitate and simplify this complex process, we propose that hierarchical thinking be used first to structure the essences of the problem capturing only the major issues, and an Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) model be built. Users can learn from the modeling process and gain much insight into the problem. The AHP can then be extended to an Analytic Network Process (ANP) model so as to capture the relationships and interdependencies among the elements. Our approach can reduce the sustainable expertise, effort and information that are often needed to build an ANP model from scratch. We apply our approach to the evaluation of sustainable supply chain management strategies for the fashion industry. Three main dimensions of sustainability—environmental, economic and social—are considered. Based on the literature, we identified four alternative supply chain management strategies. It was found that the Reverse Logistics alternative appears to be the recommended solution by the AHP model. However, the Socially Leagile Supply Chain is recommended by the ANP model, thereby demonstrating the necessity and importance of considering interdependencies in the model. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Decision Support for Sustainable Supply Chain Design and Management)
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Open AccessArticle Thermal-Signature-Based Sleep Analysis Sensor
Informatics 2017, 4(4), 37; doi:10.3390/informatics4040037
Received: 24 April 2017 / Revised: 30 July 2017 / Accepted: 18 August 2017 / Published: 28 October 2017
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Abstract
This paper addresses the development of a new technique in the sleep analysis domain. Sleep is defined as a periodic physiological state during which vigilance is suspended and reactivity to external stimulations diminished. We sleep on average between six and nine hours per
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This paper addresses the development of a new technique in the sleep analysis domain. Sleep is defined as a periodic physiological state during which vigilance is suspended and reactivity to external stimulations diminished. We sleep on average between six and nine hours per night and our sleep is composed of four to six cycles of about 90 min each. Each of these cycles is composed of a succession of several stages of sleep that vary in depth. Analysis of sleep is usually done via polysomnography. This examination consists of recording, among other things, electrical cerebral activity by electroencephalography (EEG), ocular movements by electrooculography (EOG), and chin muscle tone by electromyography (EMG). Recordings are made mostly in a hospital, more specifically in a service for monitoring the pathologies related to sleep. The readings are then interpreted manually by an expert to generate a hypnogram, a curve showing the succession of sleep stages during the night in 30s epochs. The proposed method is based on the follow-up of the thermal signature that makes it possible to classify the activity into three classes: “awakening,” “calm sleep,” and “restless sleep”. The contribution of this non-invasive method is part of the screening of sleep disorders, to be validated by a more complete analysis of the sleep. The measure provided by this new system, based on temperature monitoring (patient and ambient), aims to be integrated into the tele-medicine platform developed within the framework of the Smart-EEG project by the SYEL–SYstèmes ELectroniques team. Analysis of the data collected during the first surveys carried out with this method showed a correlation between thermal signature and activity during sleep. The advantage of this method lies in its simplicity and the possibility of carrying out measurements of activity during sleep and without direct contact with the patient at home or hospitals. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ambient Assisted living for Improvement of Health and Quality of Life)
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Open AccessArticle In Search of Smartness: The EU e-Justice Challenge
Informatics 2017, 4(4), 38; doi:10.3390/informatics4040038
Received: 4 August 2017 / Revised: 31 October 2017 / Accepted: 1 November 2017 / Published: 8 November 2017
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Abstract
At the EU level, an increasing number of resources are being invested in an attempt to provide better public services through the use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT). While new tools are being designed and implemented, a shift from ‘traditional’ technologies that
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At the EU level, an increasing number of resources are being invested in an attempt to provide better public services through the use of Information and Communication Technology (ICT). While new tools are being designed and implemented, a shift from ‘traditional’ technologies that must be used to provide services to more interactive ‘smart’ technologies is beginning to take place. At the same time, an adequate understanding of the implications of this shift is still missing. This paper focuses on the EU e-Justice experience with the ‘API-for-Justice’ project, which investigates the challenges of opening up the European e-Justice Digital Service Infrastructure to external service providers by means of Application Programming Interfaces (APIs). In particular, the exploration of potential services that can be provided by third parties through APIs for Justice shows the potential for a radical redesign of the justice service provision, where, for example, justice services are not requested by the party but are proposed or initiated by smart components of the infrastructure on the basis of inputs from the environment. In this perspective, smart technology research and, in particular, Brenner (2007)’s discussion on law and smart technology help to uncover the still unclear dynamics of change that characterize one of the key pillars of modern society: justice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Government in Smart Cities)
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Open AccessArticle A Proposed Business Intelligent Framework for Recommender Systems
Informatics 2017, 4(4), 40; doi:10.3390/informatics4040040
Received: 30 September 2017 / Revised: 29 October 2017 / Accepted: 8 November 2017 / Published: 15 November 2017
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Abstract
In this Internet age, recommender systems (RS) have become popular, offering new opportunities and challenges to the business world. With a continuous increase in global competition, e-businesses, information portals, social networks and more, websites are required to become more user-centric and rely on
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In this Internet age, recommender systems (RS) have become popular, offering new opportunities and challenges to the business world. With a continuous increase in global competition, e-businesses, information portals, social networks and more, websites are required to become more user-centric and rely on the presence and role of RS in assisting users in better decision making. However, with continuous changes in user interests and consumer behavior patterns that are influenced by easy access to vast information and social factors, raising the quality of recommendations has become a challenge for recommender systems. There is a pressing need for exploring hybrid models of the five main types of RS, namely collaborative, demographic, utility, content and knowledge based approaches along with advancements in Big Data (BD) to become more context-aware of the technology and social changes and to behave intelligently. There is a gap in literature with a research focus in this direction. This paper takes a step to address this by exploring a new paradigm of applying business intelligence (BI) concepts to RS for intelligently responding to user changes and business complexities. A BI based framework adopting a hybrid methodology for RS is proposed with a focus on enhancing the RS performance. Such a business intelligent recommender system (BIRS) can adopt On-line Analytical Processing (OLAP) tools and performance monitoring metrics using data mining techniques of BI to enhance its own learning, user profiling and predictive models for making a more useful set of personalised recommendations to its users. The application of the proposed framework to a B2C e-commerce case example is presented. Full article
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Open AccessArticle Data Governance in the Sustainable Smart City
Informatics 2017, 4(4), 41; doi:10.3390/informatics4040041
Received: 23 July 2017 / Revised: 18 October 2017 / Accepted: 6 November 2017 / Published: 15 November 2017
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Abstract
The wisdom of ‘smart’ development increasingly shapes urban sustainability in Europe and beyond. Yet, the ‘smart city’ paradigm has been critiqued for favouring technological solutions and business interests over social inclusion and urban innovation. Despite the rhetoric of ‘citizen-centred approaches’ and ‘user-generated data’,
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The wisdom of ‘smart’ development increasingly shapes urban sustainability in Europe and beyond. Yet, the ‘smart city’ paradigm has been critiqued for favouring technological solutions and business interests over social inclusion and urban innovation. Despite the rhetoric of ‘citizen-centred approaches’ and ‘user-generated data’, the level of stakeholder engagement and public empowerment is still in question. It is unclear how smart city initiatives are developing common visions according to the principles of sustainable urban development. This paper examines how data governance in particular is framed in the new smart city agenda that is focused on sustainability. The challenges and opportunities of data governance in sustainability-driven smart city initiatives are articulated within a conceptual Framework on Sustainable Smart City Data Governance. Drawing on three cases from European countries and a stakeholder survey, the paper shows how governance of data can underpin urban smart and sustainable development solutions. The paper presents insights and lessons from this multi-case study, and discusses risks, challenges, and future research. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Government in Smart Cities)
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Review

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Open AccessReview Requirements and Pitfalls in AAL Projects. Guide to Self-Criticism for Developers from Experience
Informatics 2017, 4(4), 42; doi:10.3390/informatics4040042 (registering DOI)
Received: 18 September 2017 / Revised: 13 November 2017 / Accepted: 14 November 2017 / Published: 17 November 2017
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Abstract
Since 2012, several national and international projects on ambient assisted living (AAL) active and healthy ageing gave insight into the different steps of development processes where the requirements of the target group were not met or just failed to be realized. This article
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Since 2012, several national and international projects on ambient assisted living (AAL) active and healthy ageing gave insight into the different steps of development processes where the requirements of the target group were not met or just failed to be realized. This article shall provide a summary of terms and requirements from the experience of practice and project work on the topic. This article is a reflection and guide for self-criticism for technical developers. Starting with some terms and how they are linked to each other gives an overview of the field of action for the projects, which our experience is based on. A mixture between literature and results of projects illustrates the requirement analysis as it was anticipated in recent years. The conclusion consists of recommendations for further research on requirements. Full article

Other

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Open AccessConcept Paper Big Data in the Era of Health Information Exchanges: Challenges and Opportunities for Public Health
Informatics 2017, 4(4), 39; doi:10.3390/informatics4040039
Received: 11 September 2017 / Revised: 25 October 2017 / Accepted: 7 November 2017 / Published: 10 November 2017
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Abstract
Public health surveillance of communicable diseases depends on timely, complete, accurate, and useful data that are collected across a number of healthcare and public health systems. Health Information Exchanges (HIEs) which support electronic sharing of data and information between health care organizations are
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Public health surveillance of communicable diseases depends on timely, complete, accurate, and useful data that are collected across a number of healthcare and public health systems. Health Information Exchanges (HIEs) which support electronic sharing of data and information between health care organizations are recognized as a source of ‘big data’ in healthcare and have the potential to provide public health with a single stream of data collated across disparate systems and sources. However, given these data are not collected specifically to meet public health objectives, it is unknown whether a public health agency’s (PHA’s) secondary use of the data is supportive of or presents additional barriers to meeting disease reporting and surveillance needs. To explore this issue, we conducted an assessment of big data that is available to a PHA—laboratory test results and clinician-generated notifiable condition report data—through its participation in a HIE. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Quality Management in Big Data)
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