Coronavirus and Covid19 Projects & Resources
A working list of resources and solutions I think are effective around the world for Covid19. With a bias for hacking existing tools over building new things.
Over the past two months, I’ve been tracking projects on the Coronavirus because I was in Hong Kong when the news broke into the international media in January. Now, there is a proliferation of hackathons and initiatives to address the current pandemic.
The reality is that there is no use for more. There is instead a dire need for more organised knowledge and resource sharing. I’m compiling a working list of projects and initiatives that I find are useful in one way or another. I also will try to include directories, so that people can discover more solutions that I may not have covered due to differences in interests.
Here are some places to start:
The Corona Virus Tech Handbook It’s a pretty exhaustive list of mostly Euro-centric and mostly English (US and UK) resources. It’s nicely organised with flags to help people find country-specific information.
Help with Covid This is the prototype directory that I think could work as a model for other places.
All the #WirVsVirus Projects: This is a megalist of projects from the 42,000 participant hackathon. Will fish out the English translation
I will also start assembling a list of common problem verticals. My thesis is that most of them do not require a hackathon to solve. Many of problems can be solved through a mixture of existing products and behavioural changes. Some do require technology. Some require policy changes.
For now, this is a random list:
Existing Covid-19 tools & problem verticals
- Arabic: Send “مرحبا” to +41 22 501 70 23 on WhatsApp
- French: Send “salut” to +41 22 501 72 98 on WhatsApp
- Spanish: Send “hola” to +41 22 501 76 90 on WhatsApp
- English: Send “hi” to +41 79 893 18 92 on WhatsApp
Supporting your neighbourhoods:
Look for Facebook, Whatsapp, and Telegram Channels / Groups
This is an example Telegram group for Berlin. Click on the pinned notice and scroll to the English section of the message. There are a bunch of neighbourhood groups as well.
Supporting people in general:
Communities and individuals could do with a lot of help (especially if you have time to be bored). A list includes:
- Homeless people
- Migrants & refugees
- LGBTQ communities
- People with chronic health conditions
Not knowing these people is a good reason to start helping.
In Berlin, neighbourhoods have setup drop off stations for food packages to homeless people. People donate to volunteers (often individuals) who then purchase the goods and package the items (not only food, but necessities like sanitary pads). You can initiate it by offering on Instagram (and giving a Paypal account for people to donate). You can also be transparent by taking photos of the receipts when you make purchases with donations.
In London, the Bi Pandas have created a Covid-19 fund.
I’ll continue to add to this list when I have time.
Supporting the healthcare industry:
What the healthcare industry desperately needs is people to stay home, to educate themselves, and to learn about basic hygiene and virus transmissions.
What could hospitals and frontline workers do with aside from a lot more sleep? Firstly, they could do with protective gear – to medical standards. In Hong Kong, people donated surgical masks to hospitals.
A free secure messaging app for medical teams (so medics don’t have to rely on whatsapp). I highly recommend you share this with every one of your friends in the medical field right now.
#Dashboards, maps & trackers
There are over 100 maps, trackers, and dashboards available. These include global trackers, as well as country-specific ones available in languages such as Korean, Simplified and Traditional Chinese, Japanese, Thai, Hebrew, and Farsi. Some dataviz options will look better than others; have a check to see what sources are used for reliability. I have included my 3 recommendations in this section.
Covid-19 Coronavirus Map: Good for Country map + table view
Data are taken from Ding Xiang Yuan (compiled by COVID-19/2019-nCoV Time Series Infection Data Warehouse), Johns Hopkins CSSE, 1Point3Acres, and other various sources. Logo is from Icons8. The code of this project is open-sourced on Github with the MIT License.
Corona Virus App: Good for bubble cluster view for cities
Built by two French and a Korean based in Taiwan. They also have an API
Covid-19_Virus by the Baselab: One of the most extensive dashboards This was built by a high school student in Hong Kong and is an impressive dahsboard that shows global, regional, and country data. It also tracks cases over time and the largest percentage changes for countries. My main hesitation for including this is because despite its domain renaming, the creator still uses the racist Twitter handle “@thewuhanvirus”. Yes, Hong Kong people are incredibly racist.
All 3 of the maps I have highlighted are created in East Asia. These visualisations are constructed on UI that is smooth, runs well, and displays data in a meaningful way. The region that has also dealt with the virus best. There’s a lot that the world could learn from the region about, but let’s start with the data visualisation.
I have extracted the maps and projects from a directory put together by:
- Marta Suárez-Varela ( @martasvm )
- Victoriano Izquierdo ( @victorianoi )
- José Luis Antúnez (@jlantunez)
- Francisco Cueto
- Asier Sarasua (@assarasua)
Support for people building solutions
Good readings on Covid-19
This is a list of media that I think does a good job of covering different considerations for Covid-19. Consider this list a 200-400 level reading.
The Intelligence by the Economist The Economist is the only news source that I think is really delving into the sweeping implications of Covid-19 in countries and around the world – from manufacturing, to prisons – and how all these things affect us. For a start, I recommend these two: