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2020 Call for Code: How creators can help tackle climate change and COVID-19

March 27, 2020 in News | 3 min. read

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Unity is fortunate to be a part of a global community of creators and developers who have the skills and expertise to drive real change in our world with new technologies.

Call for Code Global Challenge is the largest annual tech competition focused on open-source collaboration. It brings together developers from around the world to create cutting-edge, practical technology to help solve some of the toughest issues facing humanity and our environment. 

The challenge was launched in 2018 by David Clark Cause and IBM, in partnership with the United Nations and the Linux Foundation. Past winners created solar-powered mesh network devices that build connectivity where there is none, and a health monitoring platform for firefighters. This year’s challenge began on March 22 and is open to all developers to begin designing and developing their solutions.

When IBM asked our Unity for Humanity team to help with the 2020 challenge, we wholeheartedly agreed because the initiative combines innovation with effective real-world solutions, part of the mandate of Unity for Humanity and Unity’s DNA. Our role was to work with other partners to develop starter kits for participants. These valuable tools allow developers to get a head start creating solutions on one of two fronts: Climate change and COVID-19 mitigation.

Contributing to the starter kits

In February, Scott Sewell, a software developer with Unity’s Innovation Group – Unity Labs, attended the Call for Code kickoff in Geneva to collaborate on the templates. Scott worked with programmers, data scientists, designers, and others from companies around the world. In teams of four, they worked alongside subject-matter experts from the United Nations to create starter kits for each of this year’s focus areas. 

The kits provide examples of what possible solutions might look like on a programming level. This includes code that demonstrates how to integrate IBM cloud technologies like data analytics, artificial intelligence (AI), and internet of things (IoT) into potential solutions.

The two tracks: Climate change and COVID-19

For the first track, Call for Code is asking developers, data scientists, and other subject-matter experts to create solutions that help halt and reverse the effects of climate change in our world. This includes solutions that concentrate on water sustainability, energy sustainability, and disaster resiliency.

For the COVID-19 track, they’re looking for solutions that will arm developers, visionaries, and problem solvers with resources to build open-source technology solutions that address three main areas: crisis communication during an emergency, ways to improve remote learning, and how to inspire cooperative local communities.

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Take on the challenge, with the help of Unity

As always, innovation and community are key Unity pillars and this challenge brings them together in a way that could create positive change for our planet. We hope that as participants are designing and producing what could be groundbreaking solutions for these two global issues, they will consider how our low-barrier-to-entry tools and wide-ranging technologies for XR, simulation, machine learning and other capabilities can help them. 

To get involved in this year’s challenge, please visit 2020 Call for Code Global Challenge.

March 27, 2020 in News | 3 min. read

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