Can you hack COVID-19?

22.05.2020 - 16:11
Mynd með færslu
 Mynd: Hack the Crisis - Facebook
Hack the Crisis Iceland is the name of a hackathon taking place this weekend which is billed as an opportunity for solutions-orientated people to create ideas. Despite the name, there is no requirement for participants to know computer programming, organisers promise.

Kristjana Björk Barðdal, manager and co-founder of Reboot Hack, which is among the hackathon’s organisers, says it is a common misunderstanding that people think computer hacking or programming skills are necessary for a hackathon. In reality, they are innovation events at which people with differing backgrounds and expertise work together to find solutions to challenges. 

Unlike most competitions, the hackathon is a sort of marathon in which participants have a set amount of time to offer the best solution to the challenge(s) at hand. In this case, the competition starts at 16.00 today (Friday) and will end at the same time on Monday, Kristjana explained. 

This weekend’s hackathon is connected to innovation in healthcare, social and welfare services, and cultural and economic affairs. Hack the Crisis is an international campaign and a large number of countries have been holding similar events in light of the COVID-19 crisis, trying to find innovative solutions to the many problems the crisis has caused. 

The challenges are set out in different categories and a jury assesses the proposed solutions to each challenge. The prize is 500,000 krónur in each category. 

Among the challenges are the waiting rooms of the future, social isolation, and distance learning for schools. The hackathon is among the first online-only hackathons in the world and will feature live coverage on its Facebook page. Prospective participants can sign up all weekend, though it is clearly best to start as early as possible.

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