Day 8: Lots to Learn

Today, there were three meetings at the University of Nicosia. The presenters today were Fleet Management Limited, Mr. Antonis Polemitis, CEO of UNIC, and Dr. Spyros Makridakis, Director of UNIC’s Institute for the Future. In between the presentations we had lunch at The Block, UNIC’s version of The Eatery.

The first presentation of the day was by Fleet Management Limited. FLM is a company that deals in ship management, which means that they are not the owners of the ship, but they manage and run the ship when it has cargo. The owner will accept a job then hire FLM to manage their ship while fulfilling the job. FLM has grown to the second largest ship management company in the world. They are based out of Hong Kong, but Cyprus is an important branch because it is in the middle of Europe, Asia, and Africa. The speakers from Fleet Management Limited were the CEO of the Cyprus branch and another high-ranking colleague. They ended the presentation with some interesting facts. I will share some of those. The largest port in the world is in Shanghai, China. The largest European port is in Rotterdam, Netherlands. However, Rotterdam is not even a top ten largest port in the world.

The second presentation came after lunch. This was a presentation on blockchain and cryptocurrency by the CEO of UNIC, Antonis Polemitis. Coming into this presentation I had heard of these terms, but I had not really understood them. After the presentation, I can say that I now have a much better understanding of what blockchain, and cryptocurrency are. The key point is that blockchain solves the problem of databases before. Blockchains run without one singular admin who controls everything. There can be multiple admins at one time. The biggest quote I took from the presentation was this, “Services are run by networks, not people.” This is how blockchain works.

The last presentation was about data forecasting by Dr. Spyros Makridakis, Director of UNIC’s Institute for the Future. Fun facts about Dr. Spyros Makridakis, he was on Greece’s Olympic sailboat team in 1960 and he created a data forecasting competition for around the globe that tests the best methods against each other. The competition has created leaps in data forecasting by showing what strategy’s work best. The presentation mostly explained what data forecasting was and about the competitions. The last competition, the M5, was won by a senior college student from South Korea.

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