Home Artificial Intelligence 6th Sense Wins EPIC Challenge

6th Sense Wins EPIC Challenge


Fairfax, Virginia, Sept. 30, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — The AFCEA International Emerging Professionals in Intelligence Committee (EPIC) threw down the gauntlet, challenging organizations to demonstrate a way to pull together structured and unstructured data using artificial intelligence to generate actionable information. Nokia came in first place with 6th Sense, an app that identifies anomalies in the number of public gatherings to improve situational awareness and help government agencies and first responders. NuWave took second place, and both companies were presented with monetary awards. The announcement was made at the Intelligence & National Security Summit, a virtual event co-hosted by AFCEA and the Intelligence and National Security Alliance.

The 2020 EPIC App Challenge gave companies six weeks create an application that could analyze open-source data sets and identify anomalies such as potential natural disasters, social unrest, cyber attacks and disease patterns. This capability would increase the Intelligence Community’s situational awareness.

Nokia assembled engineers from around the world to develop the 6th Sense working prototype. It sources mobile network cell metrics to identify concentrations of people, which might indicate an unplanned event or gathering. Using only anonymized data to protect privacy, the app identifies activity and triggers analysis of other relevant unclassified sources for additional information.

Collecting additional input from the app’s mobile users, 6th Sense artificial intelligence modules present the information in a clear, easy-to-understand mobile format. App users can send drones to investigate situations further by bringing in additional images and live data streams. Data coverage also can be extended using drone-based wireless base stations.

“The AFCEA EPIC App Challenge brings out so much talent and innovation,” says Ray Cross, vice president for intelligence, AFCEA International. “It is always an inspiration to see what the teams can achieve in such a short amount of time. The teams’ efforts honor the spirit of collaboration championed by AFCEA and AFCEA Intelligence. Nokia’s team demonstrated the breadth and depth of their organization’s capabilities by producing an app that holds great promise for situational awareness and human massing intelligence—both critical capabilities for governments in the future.”

This was Nokia’s first year participating in the event. Mike Calabrese, senior vice president, Americas, Nokia Enterprise, says it’s an honor to receive this recognition from AFCEA International and EPIC. “Along with our developments and growth in key technology trends like 5G, the 6th Sense mobile app demonstrates our ability to innovate quickly and develop robust applications to drastically improve an organization’s ability to better understand the context and scale of anomalous gatherings,” Calabrese says. “We look forward to presenting innovations of this caliber to our government customers worldwide.”

Mikko Jarva, advanced technology group leader, Nokia Network Software, reveals that the development team put together a working prototype in a matter of weeks with a clear and precise demonstration of its initial capabilities. “The creation of this app shows how Nokia can apply its deep understanding in machine learning, AI, wireless communications, automation, orchestration and drones—and the linkages between these technologies—to bring innovation to governments,” Jarva says.

EPIC focuses on developing leaders, networking and giving back to the Intelligence Community. The committee, comprising IC professionals ages 40 and under from the public and private sectors, enhances AFCEA’s outreach and education to the community. It is an extension of the association’s longstanding Intelligence Committee.


AFCEA International, established in 1946, is a nonprofit membership association serving the military, government, industry and academia. Join online.

Maryann Lawlor
AFCEA International
(703) 631-6179


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