Current month:

How to use: Use the dropdown menu to select a city, and press the buttons next to it to either play a sonification for the last 10 months of COVID cases along with the inverse search frequency, or the next 3 predicted months based on case values from the past 3 months. Refresh to hear another city.

For this project, I gathered data on the number of coronavirus cases by state, and the search frequency for "coronavirus" by metro area. This data was gathered at the monthly level from January to October, and the "predicted" case numbers are based off of a linear regression in Excel on the case numbers for the 3 previous months (August, September, October).

For the data representation, I decided to inverse the values of search frequency and map that to the sound of people talking in a restaurant. For this mapping, when search frequency went up (and people cared more about the virus), the volume of talking in a restaurant setting decreased. At the same time, an oscillator frequency maps to the number of cases in that state for each month. From these sounds, one can hear the sounds of the early lockdown as well as the gradual reopening up to October across the nation. Where things differ are in the regional cases. Across the country, searches (for the purposes of the mapping, volume of talking) followed a similar trajectory, but cases were different from place to place. New York began with a large peak in cases, but lowered and stayed low while volume began to increase. In contrast, Tampa increased in volume before their peak subsided, leaving a high frequency of cases with a higher volume of talking. At the beginning one can hear a relationship between cases and talking (in areas which had cases first, like NY), however, as time went on, there is a nationwide "coronavirus fatigue" sonified in the data since the end of summer that has little correlation with current case numbers.

I also added a button to hear the predicted next 3 months based on the trajectory of the previous 3. From this, some waves that are currently occuring in the Midwest (Wisconsin, Ohio, Illinois, etc.) can be heard.


Case numbers:

Search frequency:

People talking sound: