Public life and the dynamic global economy came to a standstill as the
COVID-19 virus spread worldwide. Suddenly, the social activities people enjoy
in their everyday lives—going to a concert, having dinner with friends
or dancing the night away in a club—became unthinkable. Individuals,
governments and businesses were woefully ill-prepared.
The low-cost international travel that linked people for pleasure and business
also enabled the spread of COVID-19 to almost every country in the world and
was ground to a halt as countries closed their borders and airlines canceled
flights. Schools closed, non-essential workers and the elderly were told to
stay at home in self-isolation. Governments put various lockdown measures in
place in an effort to stop the tide.
Unfortunately, infections and deaths continued to rise rapidly in some of the
most developed nations in the world. Critical shortages of ventilators and
personal protective equipment caused higher death rates.
United Against COVID-19 with New Digitalization Opportunities
Despite the bleak stories of tragedy and death, the global health crisis also
brought out the good in humanity; many became more interested in growing and
cooking their own food, exploring their creativity at home and helping elderly
or vulnerable neighbors with grocery shopping and other essentials.
Institutions that we once thought of as physical spaces have been resilient
and transformed themselves into the digital realm. Children have continued
their schooling at home, universities and colleges have offered classes online
and enterprises have become more digital, either by allowing their workforce
to work from home or by offering online shopping and support. Advances in
digitalization and the leveraging of existing technologies that allow people
to work, shop and study remotely using smart connected devices made this
ecosystem of change possible.
Volodymyr Goinyk / Shutterstock.com
Drone Technology and Breaking Down Pandemic Barriers
The next generation of advanced technologies such as
artificial intelligence, machine learning
are bringing us to the next level in anticipating and automating for the
future. How can we use this opportunity to take better advantage of these
technologies and build improved infrastructures that will respond better to
Sign Up Now and Make an Impact with Your Coding Skills
The goal of the latest NXP
competition is to help humanity learn from recent developments and find
innovative ways to connect with each other, protect vulnerable populations and
meet critical demands in future global health crises. We’re challenging
you to come up with innovative ways for a drone to prevent the spread of
disease and improve crisis management during a future pandemic.
Drones are unmanned and can perform essential tasks that would normally put a
human in danger of exposure to a virus or dangerous chemicals. Because they
can fly, drones also can cut the response time required for road travel. The
first NXP HoverGames Challenge demonstrated how we can help firefighters and
first responders. Competitors can adapt and apply ideas from the first
challenge to the second challenge. In addition, NXP HoverGames Challenge 2
participants get the opportunity to include vision in their solutions.
Ideally, an NXP HoverGames drone should be able to carry out its mission as
autonomously as possible. With the help of your code, your drone could address
many theoretical scenarios. It could be activated by a signal from an ill
person and fly out immediately or it could provide a communication and data
link for emergency responders at the scene of a crisis. Your drone might be
geared for a pharmaceutical dispatch unit that carries essential prescriptions
directly to vulnerable patients in their homes. It may also be programmed to
provide augmented communication networks between isolated populations and
When it comes to your NXP HoverGames entry, we want your imagination to run
wild. The sky is literally the limit!
>> Sign up and learn more about how NXP HoverGames Challenge 2 plans
to remove barriers in pandemics.
This is the second NXP HoverGames Challenge. Read more about the winners of
the first challenge, “Fighting Fires with Flyers,”
in our first blog.