Weeknotes WK43: Covid-19 data, iOS Widgets, Guides

This week was mostly covered by researching Covid-19 data, creating iOS widgets and starting a new section on this blog.

Photo by Greg Bakker on Unsplash

Covid-19 data and iOS Widgets

Earlier this week, I stumbled across the fantastic iOS Widget to display the COVID-19 incidence created by Kevin. I immediately decided to create a fork of it, because I wanted to see the new cases in Germany and the incidence at my current location. Kevin used the app Scriptable, which is a handy tool to create automation and widgets for iOS using JavaScript.

This is what my fork looks like:

  • You can find the code on Github.
  • I also wrote a short guide on how to install this widget on iOS.

Right beside my own widget, I use the fantastic Corona-Tagebuch created by Herbert Hertramph. He built this using the iOS Shortcuts app. It allows you to track your contacts inside of the Notes.app. For every contact, it creates a new note with date, time, a link to the iOS Maps app and your notes. Just perfect.

A neat side effect of writing and collaborating on this widget. I got some new followers on Twitter. Hopefully, they stay and enjoy the ride.

A side-note on COVID-19 data

At the moment we have a lot of discussion in Germany about the COVID-19 data collected by our Robert-Koch-Institut. They seem to be rather out-dated depending where you live. In some cities, it is always updated, and in others, it is always a bit behind the current situation.

Here is an interesting article in the German newsmagazine Der Spiegel covering this topic. Summary: Due to early closing time and long reporting chain, the RKI data are usually 2 days old at publication.

For example, at the moment I have the following incidence values for my hometown Koblenz:

Die Zeit76.3

Depending on the source of the data we are either below the threshold to be a hotspot, or just crossed this threshold or boldly moving towards the next threshold at 100. This is a confusing situation for us residents.

Sadly, I haven’t found a proper solution for my widget yet. The data from coronavis.dbvis.de and Die Zeit are not accessible via API. Only the RKI offers API-level access to there data.

Guides, Guides, Guides

I tend to research the same topics over and over again. Mostly, because I am jumping between various technologies my teams use at alfa Media Partner and what I use for my personal projects. And if I don’t see things daily, my brain starts to forget about certain bits and pieces. So I decided to start a section on this blog where I publish installation and configuration guides. Mostly, to help myself, but maybe you find them helpful too.

Here are the first two guides I setup: