COVID-19 is affecting the entire population. As the battle cry of the nation – and the world – these days goes, we are all in this together. What’s fascinating about this sense of togetherness is how it’s inspired individuals across the globe to unite not only to support each other in this trying time, but to collaborate solutions to this worldwide pandemic. While working from my makeshift home office while my (almost adult) children binge watch cartoons (I am not making this up – they are hysterically cackling over their favorite Spongebob episodes as I type this) and eat me out of house and home, I’ve come across story after story about people coming together in different ways to combat this virus. While reading through these, what strikes me most is how we are not only trying to come up with potential cures for the virus together, but we’re also collaborating on these ideas. We’re doing more than just crowdsourcing COVID-19 – we are CrowdWeaving™ it. While crowdsourcing brings people together to obtain information or input into a task, CrowdWeaving takes this a step further: it encourages ideation and collaboration, to enable participants actively generate potential solutions, and have ongoing dialogs to review and test those solutions.
Consider these examples:
1. Per a recent article in The Economist, medical professionals around the world are collaborating on best treatment practices for
COVID-19. According to the article, “Around the world, clinicians already gather online to learn and share their experience on such
topics as HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, cancer and mental health… Many are now using their sessions to learn about COVID-19.”
Ultimately, they are CrowdWeaving COVID-19:
2. Harvard, using crowdsourcing technology, has developed a website for the public to report current symptoms in real time, in an attempt to help provide information to public health experts and government officials who are struggling to understand how many people are infected locally, statewide and nationally:
3. Cornell has a similar app:
4. NASA has issued an agency-wide crowdsourcing call for ideas around COVID-19 response:
5. Google and Apple have partnered to help develop opt-in contact tracing technology, to help contain the spread of COVID-19. If these two giants can work together, anyone can:
6. Even the White House is collaborating, with call to action to the Nation’s artificial intelligence experts to develop new text and data mining techniques that can help the science community answer high-priority scientific questions related to COVID-19:
Again, we are all in this together. While this pandemic, with its stay at home directives and fear driven by the unknown nature of this virus, is frightening, there is beauty in the way we are rising above this by working together to CrowdWeave COVID-19. With the drive and resolve that the global community is currently showing as we work together, it’s only a matter of time before we overcome this virus.