UTM’s 108th Inaugural Lecture entitled “Big Data and Artificial Intelligence (AI), Software Driven Solutions: Overview and The Future Direction” was successfully delivered on 5th August 2021 by Professor Ts. Dr Ali Bin Selamat, the Dean of Malaysia-Japan International Institute of Technology (MJIIT) and Research Fellow of MaGICX. Also present at the event were Prof Ts. Dr Rose Alinda Alias acted as the Chairman, while Prof Dr Shamsul Sahibuddin was the reviewer. The event was successfully gathered virtually more than 300 viewers, including the public audience, students and UTM staff.

Prof Ts Dr Ali bin Selamat obtained his PhD in Computer and System Sciences from the University of Osaka Prefecture, Japan, in 2003, and completed his Japanese Studies at Osaka University, Japan. He began his career as a Tutor in 1997 at Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM). Prof. Ts. Dr Ali bin Selamat also was promoted to Professor of Software Engineering at the age of 38.

His research interests focus on data analysis, digital transformation, knowledge management in higher education, key performance indicators, cloud-engineering software, software agents, genetic algorithms, and soft computing.

Prof. Ts. Dr Ali bin Selamat is presently a part of the National Artificial Intelligence Roadmap research project team appointed by the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI). In addition, he was also a principal consultant of the Big Data Analytics project commissioned by the Ministry of Higher Education Malaysia (2018-2019). Currently, he serves on the Editorial Boards of the International Journal of Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning (IJAIMIL), IGI Global, the International Journal of Information and Database Systems (IJIIDS), Inderscience Switzerland, and the Vietnam Journal of Computer Science, published by World Scientific Publications. He is co-chairing the IEA/AIE 2021: 34th International Conference on Industrial, Engineering, and Other Applications of Applied Intelligent Systems in Kuala Lumpur.

Professor Ali has addressed an insightful sharing on the AI and big data experience, where the digital gap can be observed in the world as it happened at high speed. AI is the function of utilizing big data to isolate hidden and unseen patterns that are possible to create an environment that can eliminate and reduce human error in optimizing big data and AI applications in the digital setting.

AI and big data are relevant during the pandemic era, especially on analyzing health reports accurately. The different roles played by AI during pandemics are:

  • Early warning and alerts
  • Prediction and detection of an outbreak of diseases
  • Real-time disease monitoring worldwide.
  • Analysis and visualization of spreading trends
  • Prediction of infection rate and infection trend
  • Rapid decision-making to identify the effective treatments
  • Study and research of the pathogens
  • Drug discovery

In his address, Prof. Ts. Dr Ali bin Selamat also shared the recent works on applied soft-computing and AI-related software that have been developed. The emerging technologies will encourage value-centric and value-based human development to make the industry move forward and remain significant while reducing the threshold of uncertainty in the post-pandemic.