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Mapping the spread of COVID-19 in Ohio

Ohio State computer science and engineering student Faris Rehman teamed up with a fellow student and two alumni to create a county-by-county map that shows the statewide spread of COVID-19 cases.

Like many of us, Ohio State student Faris Rehman found himself yearning for a connection while also practicing the social distancing recommended to combat the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19).

Rehman acted on his need by seeing beyond his parents’ home in Hilliard, Ohio, even as the walls seemed to be closing in on him.

“I had the quarantine jitters,” Rehman said. “Just to occupy myself and get my mind off freaking out about the whole situation, I thought I should do something that is valuable to people. I decided I’m going to make a map.”

Rehman used the skills he’s learning as a second-year major in computer science and engineering to construct a free online map of Ohio that tracks daily the number of COVID-19 cases in each of the state’s 88 counties.

Rehman launched his website and its map on March 19. Within two days, a couple of Ohio State computer science and engineering alums — his brother Afnan Rehman and their friend Faisal Baig — and third-year student Lia Ferguson volunteered to join as a virtual team to improve the map each day.

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