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World's biggest IT fair ready to boot up

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World's biggest IT fair ready to boot up
The CeBIT exhibition showcases state-of-the-art IT. Photo: DPA
08:37 CET+01:00
Around 230,000 IT professionals from all over the world will descend on Hannover on Monday for CeBIT, the world's biggest IT expo. Exhibitors from academics to start-ups will be showcasing their new tech.

The UK has been named the "Partner Country" for this year's event, with CeBIT's official website praising Britain as a "world-leading location for business" and "the most popular target for foreign investment in Europe".

The fair, which unlike last year is not open to the public, is hosting twice as many British exhibitors as it did in 2013 and the expo will demonstrate the growth in the British IT market.

British minister for trade and investment Lord Livingston said: "We will be demonstrating our excellence in areas such as e-health, big data and cyber security.

"As Germany's largest trading partner we are also sending a message about the strength of our economy in general and the IT sector in particular."

Germany is the UK's second largest export market after the US, with about €40 billion worth of goods and services exported to Germany each year, according to the British Embassy.

It’s taken 10,000 workers to set up the show in the city which historically has strong links with Britain through the Royal family.

Chancellor Angela Merkel will meet British Prime Minister David Cameron at the expo on Monday.

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Among the 3,400 exhibitors will be computer scientists from Berlin's Free University (FU) who will present "public safety" technologies.

The researchers from the FU plan to show the latest results from their research project "SAFEST" (Social-Area Framework for Early Security Triggers at Airports).

The project is developing systems for surveying large groups of people in public areas and automatically calculating the crowd's size and numbers.

The system uses new "smart" software in conjunction with an infra-red camera and Microsoft's "Kinect" sensor device (developed for games consoles) to scan large areas and detect exact numbers of people present.

Multiple sensors can also be grouped together into a wider network using RIOT, another piece of software developed by the FU, which the team will be showcasing next week.

Researchers say this tech will allow authorities to react more effectively in case of emergencies in heavily-populated areas such as airports, preventing dangerous "mass panic" incidents.

Private innovators in the IT industry will also be displaying their latest advances in Hannover.

As part of a section of the fair hosting promising start-up companies, fledgling IT firm uberMetrics will be showing off their services in web monitoring.

As companies invest more in marketing products and services through social media sites, monitoring firms hope to capitalize by offering managers feedback on how well their message is getting through to the social media world.

Company spokesman Lina Jardat said the product "uberMetrics DELTA" combined "monitoring, press review and crisis-management on all media channels”.

SEE ALSO: Germany's best minds leave the country

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