Virginia Tech student helps create website to track coronavirus

Student, friends created a website to track corronavirus data

BLACKSBURG, Va. – Tracking the coronavirus just got a whole lot easier.

“We have more sources compiled and more often, and we’ve done research into (the coronavirus). So we try to do both data and information,” Virginia Tech junior Austin Stout said.

When Virginia Tech junior Austin Stout and his friends at the University of Virginia and Stanford saw an e-mail from UVA warning people about the coronavirus, they created trackcorona.live to try to improve on other coronavirus tracking websites.

“There are a lot of sites out there that already do this, but they’re scrapped together kind of poorly or they don’t have enough information compiled often enough," Stout said.

Virginia Tech junior Nguyen Nguyen is thankful for the work of Stout and his friends, especially because the coronavirus is something that concerns him.

“My country of origin is near China, so I’m worried it’s going to spread to my family," Nguyen said.

The virus is something Mary Yeo is also paying close attention to.

She and her husband, who pastors a church just outside of Danville, have been taking care of a fellow church member in Danville since Sunday who voluntarily quarantined herself after coming back from China.

“I got food for her, left it outside her apartment. She will text me twice a day. Every time she does, she takes her temperature and then I forward it to the Danville Health Department," Yeo said.

The woman has shown no signs of being sick and, assuming she stays healthy, will be able to come out of quarantine Feb. 23.

Back at Virginia Tech, sophomore Jordan Morris isn’t overly concerned about the virus but the website still gives her some peace of mind.

“Sure, just having real-time data about what’s happening and how it’s affecting people,” said Morris.

Both she and Nguyen say knowing a fellow Hokie helped create the website makes them proud to be Hokies.

“Yeah, just knowing people are actually doing real things,” Morris said.

“I’m really proud of being a Virginia Tech student. Thank you," Nguyen said, looking at Stout who was sitting at a table in front of him in the lobby of Surge Hall.

Stout said the publicity the website has gotten is crazy.

“I’m glad to do (Virginia) Tech a favor like that, to return what I’ve been given," said Stout.

He and his friends haven’t decided what they’ll do with the website if and when the coronavirus goes away.