With great power comes great responsibility

By | 3 minute read | Fri, May 24th 2019

Coding and creativity are the closest things we have to superpowers. Learning the basics of programming is essential whether you work in marketing, entertainment, manufacturing or construction, but there is no use for technology without great ideas. Innovation and programming open a whole new world of possibilities.

This is one of them.

What is the Call for Code?

Call for Code is a multi-year global initiative that unites developers to create practical and effective applications based on cloud, data, and artificial intelligence that can have an immediate and lasting impact on humanitarian issues.

Call for Code 2019 Global Challenge asks developers to create solutions that significantly improve preparedness for natural disasters and accelerate relief when they hit. Natural disasters like earthquakes, wildfires, and storms are among the world’s greatest challenges. When disaster strikes technology has a key role.

I personally love this year’s challenge, because it focuses on individual health and community well-being. This includes solutions that can reduce the risk of disease, improve access to data and the availability of resources, and address the mental health needs of those impacted before, during, and after disasters.

Over 100.000 developers from all over the world participated in the Call for Code 2018 program. Together the participants built thousands of applications to reduce the impact of natural disasters.

The winner was Project Owl, an IoT, and software solution that keeps first responders and victims connected in a natural disaster. Inspired by the hurricane in Puerto Rico where communications were down for weeks, they created a physical floating device that – once deployed – creates a network allowing communications using commonly used messaging applications. In addition, they created a software incident management system using predictive analytics to help first responders assess the situation and coordinate resources.  This fantastic solution was created at no costs, with a free IBM Cloud account.

Collaboration creates change

Natural disasters are one of humanity’s greatest threats. While they may be inevitable, their impact can be reduced through technology. That’s why IBM created the Code and Response initiative, a multi-year program dedicated to creating and deploying open source technologies to tackle the world’s biggest challenges. The iniative is expected to facilitate the development and launch of innovative life-changing (and saving) open technology. We are proud to be a part of the IBM Developer community, which has more than 90 000 members around the globe.

IBM also has an alternative track for employees and IBM Finland will be joining the cause. My team members Lauri, Lasse, Aku, and Mikko are extremely talented people with skills in data science, application development, blockchain, user experience and cloud solutions. Stay tuned to see what solution we come up with!

IBM Finland Call for Code team

From left: Mikko Pitkänen, Lasse Huotari, Sandra Calvo Martinez, Aku Silvenius, & Lauri Koskinen

How to answer the call?  

This is an open invitation to every developer, designer, and entrepreneur who wants to make an impact. The only requirement is to use IBM’s technology as part of the solution. IBM Cloud provides hundreds of services focused on AI, machine learning, analytics, blockchain, IoT and many more to accelerate your application development process.

This is what you should do:

  1. Find a team of 2- 5 members
  2. Get inspired at https://callforcode.org and select which problem you want to tackle!
  3. Build a prototype using IBM Cloud services (Create a free IBM Cloud account here)
  4. Submit your work before 29th July 2019.

Winner will be announced in October 2019. If making the world a better place is not enough motivation, there is also a 200 000$ cash prize and other awards including the adoption of the winning projects as an open source project through The Linux Foundation to scale and accelerate the deployment worldwide.

Feel free to contact me via social media or email if you need technical help with your solution.

Answer the call and accept the challenge!

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