Research Topic

Compelling COVID-19 Graphical Simulations

About this Research Topic

The recent COVID-19 pandemic has led to various new ways of perceiving and understanding important public health data. Several exciting new methods for relaying complex information to the public have emerged using a variety of tools and platforms including visualizations (called sims), interactive augmented ...

The recent COVID-19 pandemic has led to various new ways of perceiving and understanding important public health data. Several exciting new methods for relaying complex information to the public have emerged using a variety of tools and platforms including visualizations (called sims), interactive augmented reality (AR) overlays, and interactive data platforms, among others.

This Research Topic will be a collection of short articles (1000-3000 words - e.g., Perspectives, Methods, etc.) that highlight creative, new tools and their contributions to our understanding of the COVID-19 pandemic. The editorial team is flexible about the format and content in these articles, but we encourage the inclusion of multimedia elements and links showcasing the sims or platforms. We are looking for content beyond traditional epidemiological curve modeling.

Such platforms, hopefully interactive, offer unique opportunities to help people comprehend the virus, how it spreads, and perhaps how modeling/sims can affect change in behaviors.
One example, from a lab at Arizona State University, is an interactive public service announcement that is aimed at those with low science literacy; it focuses on two simple behavioral changes (distance and masking) and will be both Web-based and on mobile Augmented Reality (see trailer).

There are multiple open research questions related to this research topic.
Because this field is moving quickly, we are interested more in the design aspects of these simulations or platforms, and less in efficacy studies. The goal is to learn from each other as we create these sims and interactive data platforms.

Topics include, but are not limited to:
• Using sims and interactive data platforms visualization as teaching tools in education
• Visualization techniques, e.g., leveraging GPS mobile data
• Theoretical models of what is most effective in a sim
• Design descriptions of how your team came to final decisions – what worked, what didn’t
• The use of mobile or augmented, mixed, or virtual reality (XR) in COVID sims and interactive data platforms
• Theories of cognitive processing supporting your sim
• Optimizing visualizations/sims for different types of stakeholders (e.g., businesses versus health care facilities)
• Concepts about sims and interactive data platforms as they relate to individual differences in viewers (e.g., those with low science literacy, or certain susceptibilities like diabetes, etc.)

Again, while all article types can be submitted, we encourage submission of short papers (authors may see the article types and the authors guidelines for all the details; we propose 1000-3000 words). Along with the short manuscript, we ask for an accompanying URL so that readers can access and experience the sim and interactive data platforms. Links will reside with you, but you also have the ability to host your WebGL content in a repository at Arizona State University for up to two years. Additionally, Frontiers hosts any figures, data, and code as supplementary material in figshare. At the submission stage authors will be asked where the sim or interactive data platform should be hosted, and may decide to upload in figshare without any additional cost.

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Instructions for authors:
Please consider that abstract acceptance does not guarantees that the paper will be finally accepted.
We encourage a range of 1,000 to 3,000 words.

Please minimally cover these topics and consider these additional criteria:
• How does your work relate to COVID-19
• Describe some of the process of design and/or creation
• Who is your target audience
• How does your sim/platform work
• If you have user study data, that is appropriate to include – but not necessary
• Describe how your tool contributes to the understanding of COVID-19
• The editors reserve the right to define “compelling” – definitely uniqueness and creativity are part of that
• IMPORTANT: Insert a link to a sample of your sim/platform (can be interactive, or a video). Note - you can continue to update that as you wish on your end.

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Note: plase contact the Editorial Office at computerscience@frontiersin.org for any questions.

Disclosure: Topic Editor Dr. Johnson-Glenberg is also lead designer and founder of the Embodied Games lab.


Keywords: Simulations, Visualizations, Augmented Reality, XR, COVID-19, Interactive Data Platforms


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

15 December 2020 Manuscript
31 January 2021 Manuscript Extension

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

15 December 2020 Manuscript
31 January 2021 Manuscript Extension

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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