How did COVID-19 have an effect on the monetary markets of the world’s main economies? How did restrictions to cease the unfold of the illness change the best way individuals traveled earlier this 12 months? And, is there any correlation between a inhabitants’s dietary habits and the way every nation managed to regulate the outbreak?
These are among the questions that college students who participated in a digital hackathon hosted by Northeastern’s Seattle campus sought to discover this summer time. Grouped into groups, graduate college students from the Seattle, San Francisco Bay Space, and Vancouver campuses in fields akin to information analytics, engineering, and undertaking administration pooled their skills and abilities to create interactive dashboards, chatbots, and visualizations.
Led by Patrick Chidsey, the affiliate director of profession companies and experiential studying on the Seattle campus, the hackathon culminated in a last showcase held through Zoom final month that allowed every staff a chance to current their months-long work and deal with questions from an viewers of their friends and the general public.
“This is a difficult and complicated topic for so many different reasons and it hits us personally in a lot of different ways,” Chidsey remarked. “I know we’re looking at data and graphs and fancy dashboards today, but we all know there’s the human element behind all this information, so I appreciated a lot of the teams calling that out.”
The highest prize was awarded to Dong Quoc Tuong, Sreelakshmi Sneha Mulukutla, Krishna Prakash Sankaramanchi, and Charita Madduri for growing a chatbot device to reply questions associated to COVID-19. Designed to answer customers in 23 totally different languages and pulling the newest information from Johns Hopkins College, they demonstrated that their chatbot can display for signs and spit out details about the pandemic in real-time, in addition to details about native testing websites. The chatbot will be built-in into web sites and social platforms, the staff mentioned.
Ending runner-up was a staff that sought to grasp how totally different modes of transportation, in addition to journey and commuting patterns, had been affected by the pandemic over time. For his or her undertaking, staff members Sukanya Aswini Dutta, Chen Liang, Nickyta Manishkumar Patel, Rohith Reddy Narra, and Tiezhou Duan constructed a web site that serves as a prediction device for analyzing airline journey and ridership tendencies in metropolitan areas akin to New York Metropolis.
They discovered that ridership fell within the Huge Apple and that the majority airways recorded vital drops in air journey and gas consumption in April. The staff additionally decided that whereas vehicles had been the most secure solution to journey, rideshares and taxis posed the best danger, as did subways, buses, and different modes of public transportation. Seen security measures, akin to bodily distancing, face masks, and touchless cost methods helped make passengers really feel safer, the staff mentioned.
One other staff developed a dashboard that analyzed the fiscal affect of COVID-19 on the monetary markets of the world’s richest nations, and took into consideration components akin to the supply of hospital beds and free COVID-19 exams. The dashboard additionally in contrast the nations’ gross home product, their well being price range, and the way a lot they spent combating the viral outbreak.
“It’s not just the amount of money countries are diverting to the crisis but the timeline affects the recovery metric,” mentioned Arjun Malhotra.
A correlation between meals patterns and international restoration charges was the topic of investigation for an additional staff. The members created a web site to investigate the widespread affect of the general public well being disaster after which individually checked out dietary habits.
One thing to think about, instructed Prachi Mate, a member of the staff, is that one of many the explanation why the USA has been hit the toughest by COVID-19 may very well be due to the nation’s dietary decisions. However, she reminded, whereas this may be a contributing issue, it’s not the only issue.
One other staff constructed a device for trying on the relationship between COVID-19 associated hashtags on Twitter and the prevalence of instances across the U.S. As a way to do that, the staff needed to first request entry to information from the social media firm, then they used interactive information visualization software program to investigate it.
One member of the staff, Robert Zipp, mentioned that they needed to know whether or not the subjects individuals had been tweeting about may be straight affecting the speed of COVID-19 instances and deaths. He mentioned that finally the device he and his staff constructed has the potential to disclose which hashtags are fueling real-life tendencies and patterns.
“I really do want to know if misinformation makes health outcomes worse or if there isn’t that much of a relationship,” he mentioned.
In the same vein, one other staff analyzed YouTube feedback to achieve perception into the conversations occurring on-line across the pandemic. Getting access to information from YouTube for his or her undertaking, the staff members created a phrase cloud generator based mostly on the phrases most steadily utilized by customers. ‘Vaccine,’ for instance, began popping up in May, the staff discovered.
Group member Jingyan Qiao made an astute remark. Regardless of the devastation attributable to the COVID-19 disaster, she mentioned, the phrase cloud was replete with constructive phrases.
“We believe people still live with hope and love, and treat others with care and a grateful heart,” she mentioned.
Qiao was considered one of 25 college students who participated within the hackathon. The six groups started engaged on their tasks in mid-June based mostly on out there information. Alongside the best way, Chidsey mentioned, college students enrolled in an experiential-learning course by Blackboard and tracked their insights by Northeastern’s Self-Authored Built-in Studying platform.
Judging was performed by a panel that included school members from the Khoury Faculty of Pc Sciences and researchers from the Fred Hutchinson Most cancers Analysis Heart and Pacific Northwest Nationwide Laboratory, together with builders from Mapbox, a mapping platform for web sites and functions.
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