Learn how your company can participate in the COVID-19 track of the 2020 Call for Code Global Challenge and make an immediate impact
In a very short period of time, COVID-19 has revealed the limits of the systems we take for granted. I’m personally inspired by a message we received from an elderly, at-risk individual in the UK who is quarantined and struggling with a lack of grocery delivery options because local stores are overwhelmed with orders. How can we connect folks like this with local volunteers and digital payments to keep them safe and fed during this crisis? We think these are the kinds of problems that tech and community cooperation can address very quickly.
We recognize the urgency to act — to identify, build, and deploy solutions — so we have created an accelerated timeline for the COVID-19 Call for Code track. The initial submission deadline is Monday, April 27, and we’ll announce the three top solutions on Tuesday, May 5, at the IBM Think Virtual Conference. Our goal is to work quickly to partner with those teams to get their innovations out in the field, while keeping the track open through July to continually source and showcase more solutions until we announce our global challenge winners in October.
Today we’re publishing three COVID-19 starter kits (see here): quick-start guides that explain the individual problems people and communities are facing, to help you start creating applications tied to easy-to-understand use cases in just minutes.
Crisis communication: In times of crisis, communications systems are one of the first systems to become overwhelmed. Chatbots help respond to tens, even hundreds, of thousands of messages a day. COVID-19 has prompted many people to seek answers about symptoms and testing sites as well as the current status of schools, transportation, and other public services. Using Watson Assistant, this Call for Code starter kit has designed a virtual assistant pre-loaded to understand and respond to common questions about COVID-19, scan COVID-19 news articles using Watson Discovery, and respond to COVID statistics inquires with data from trusted sources.
Remote education: It’s imperative that learning and creating can continue when educational institutions have to shift the way they teach in times of crises, such as the COVID-19 pandemic. Providing a set of open source tools, backed by IBM Cloud and Watson Services, will enable educators to more easily make content available for their students.
Community cooperation: There is a growing interest in enabling communities to cooperate among themselves to solve problems in times of crisis. In the COVID-19 crisis, we have already seen problems with the local supply of food, equipment, and other supplies. Mobile, web, and cloud services enable rapid deployment of applications that can empower cooperation in the community.
The kits include a description of the starter solution, an architectural diagram, and a tutorial with starter code and reference materials. My thanks to our partners like Altran for their participation and support, and we look forward to continuing to collaborate with our returning Call for Code supporter, Bank of China.
Tarush Verma, Client Leader and AVP at Altran, a global innovation and engineering consulting firm, said “Altran will help fight this pandemic by creating innovative solutions for the Call for Code Global Challenge including chatbots and other applications based on the new COVID-19 developer starter kits.”
Please register at this Link to look at how to join for the event.