DMZ launches #HackTheCurve to help develop solutions addressing COVID-19


Ryerson University’s DMZ is creating an online hackathon aimed at facilitating the development of solutions to help address the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.

Over a two-week period, teams will develop a technology solution to help curb the virus’ spread.

The challenge, called #HackTheCurve, is aimed to provide an opportunity for individuals to create teams online and build solutions to tackle challenges specifically related to the current COVID-19 pandemic. The winner of the challenge will receive $10,000 in cash as well as an expedited application for DMZ membership.

“While continuing to practice social distancing, we’re encouraging innovators across Canada to take advantage of online tools in order to work collaboratively and create solutions that can support businesses, government and individuals impacted by COVID-19, locally and globally,” said Abdullah Snobar, executive director of the DMZ.

Over a two-week period, teams of up to five participants will compete by developing an innovative technology solution to help curb the virus’ spread. Participating individuals or teams are challenged to create a digital solution that aims to help combat issues related to the COVID-19 crisis across a range of themes, including:

  • Virtual supports to help those in need
  • Communication platforms to mobilize information
  • Solutions for healthcare improvement (diagnostics, ventilation, sanitation, etc.)
  • Contact tracing solutions
  • Crisis management tools
  • Business Continuity

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For individuals applying without a team, DMZ will connect applicants with teammates that complement each other’s skillset. Applications for the challenge are now open and close on April 5. The challenge will take place from April 8 to 22, and the winner will be announced on April 23.

“Some of the greatest startups have been built in the darkest times,” the DMZ said on the challenge’s website. “The DMZ’s ultimate goal is to see a viable, high-potential startup formed as a result of #HackTheCurve.”

Image source DMZ

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle Kirkwood

Isabelle is a Vancouver-based writer with 5+ years of experience in communications and journalism and a lifelong passion for telling stories. For over two years, she has reported on all sides of the Canadian startup ecosystem, from landmark venture deals to public policy, telling the stories of the founders putting Canadian tech on the map.

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