Virtual competition empowers the community with innovative solutions
12 May 2020
In a socially distanced world, the Virtual Hack and Design Challenge 2020 (VHDC2020) hosted by HKBU brought together more than 110 participants from 16 countries and regions to develop online innovative projects that address the COVID-19 crisis in 48 hours.
This first global students COVID-19 virtual hack was organised by HKBU's Department of Computer Science, School of Communication and Centre for Innovative Service-Learning in collaboration with the University of Perugia in Italy and the National Cheng Kung University in Taiwan. The virtual competition provided university students from around the world with the opportunity to design solutions that can empower the community on the themes of "During COVID-19", "After COVID-19" and the "Next Pandemic".
Before the challenge began, the participants formed 17 multidisciplinary teams and took part in a series of online workshops on a range of topics including design thinking, digital media, communication strategies and mobile application development. Guided by facilitators and mentors, the teams communicated remotely across different time zones and regions, and worked together to deliver their creative ideas.
The championship title went to a team comprising students from HKBU, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, the National Cheng Kung University and Kyoto University. The team proposed to develop a mobile application that helps users understand the level of risk associated with going outside. The proposed app also offers recommendations on social distancing measures and provides emotional support through an artificial intelligence-enabled bot.
The enthusiastic response from the participants in the VHDC2020 shows that effective remote collaboration, and the exchange of ideas, is achievable in a virtual setting. This provides insights into how online communities can overcome physical distance and bring about new learning opportunities.
To learn more about the VHDC2020, please click here for details.