Voters interested in what the November presidential election will mean for their own finances, and for those in their community and the nation as a whole, can get a clear visual picture from the latest update of the Politify website and app, created by UC Berkeley students and a big winner in last spring’s CITRIS Big Ideas contest.
Politify launched during primary season, and now has taken its concept live for the general election. Its data-fed algorithms allow people to upload their basic financial information, click a button and see how much a win by Barack Obama or Mitt Romney would help or hurt their bottom line. Enter a zip code, and you can see how the population in a town would feel the results. And national impacts — including deficit projections — are available, too.
Politify, which went live during primary season and has now been updated, was founded by two UC Berkeley students: Nikita Bier, who graduated in economics and business administration last spring, and Jeremy Blalock, the project’s lead engineer and a current student in the department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences. Also involved are four other Berkeley students: Brad Voracek, a data scientist currently studying applied mathematics in economics and computer science; Dat Duong, another data scientist who is working toward his master’s in statistics; Mihir Deo, a policy analyst and communications manager, who is studying business and public policy; and Jamin Wong, an engineer who is a senior studying computer science.
Among their advisers are UC Berkeley professors who are two of the top economists in the country, Emmanuel Saez and Robert Reich.