Instagram founders Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger are back in the news with their new website. It’s not another social media site, though. In fact, it’s a utility that should help US citizens track the spread of the coronavirus in their state.
Instagram Founders’ New Website Tracks COVID-19’s Rate Of Infection
The website is called Rt.live, and it provides a breakdown of the rate of the coronavirus’ spread per state. Rt is a measurement of the number of people that an infected person may be infecting.
They’ve sourced all their data from The COVID Tracking Project. Here’s how it works. If the Rt of a given state is above 1, it means that the coronavirus is spreading at an increasing rate. However, if the Rt is below 1, it doesn’t mean that the virus isn’t spreading at all. It simply means that it’s not spreading from one person to another as rapidly.
The website shows that Vermont is doing the best in terms of curbing the spread of this virus. It only has an Rt of 0.33. The state of Georgia, on the other hand, has the highest Rt at 1.5.
States May Find This Data Helpful In Term Of Decision-Making
In speaking to TechCrunch, Mike Krieger explained their motivation behind building this website. “Kevin has been writing and publishing open-source data analysis notebooks on how to calculate Rt on a daily basis. We wanted to take that work and visualize it so anyone can see how their state is doing at curbing the spread,” he said.
Krieger then went on to elaborate on how this measurement will help states decide how to proceed in their fight against this virus. “As states decide whether and how to open back up, they’ll have to manage their infection rate carefully, and we hope dashboards like rt.live will be helpful in doing so.”
Instagram Founders’ New Website Makes Things Simpler For Regular Folk
Kevin Systrom also spoke to Bloomberg about this website, explaining how it could be useful to regular people. “We’re trying to take what is a complex topic and boil it down to a simple number that anyone can view from their home,” he said.