3 Good Reads

One of Internet’s pioneers, Leonard Kleinrock, now a distinguished computer science professor at the UCLA Samueli School of Engineering, in an opinion piece for The Los Angeles Times wonders: What went wrong with the Internet?

The Walrus takes a look at how amateur inventors and app developers are working around the clock to fight the pandemic in this well researched and in-depth piece: “Hacking Covid

Are you ready for some kindness? On a social network? I am, and that is why I am excited about the emergence of Telepath. Technology Review explains why you should be excited.

Is Las Vegas a Super Spreader?

Analysis of cellphone data by X-Mode and Tectonix during four days (Friday to Monday) in mid-July shows that many of the roughly 26,000 devices identified on the Las Vegas Strip showed up in every state on the mainland except Maine in those same four days. This spread reminds me of how people traveled from New York City to different parts of the country and helped spread the virus. Will Las Vegas casinos become the hotspots, and the city itself will become a super spreader?

Read: Las Vegas gambling with lives/ProPublica.

Covid-19 vs Past Pandemics

COVID-19 pandemic is the second deadliest pandemic in America, based on the numbers collated by Marshall Auerback. As of today, the US facility rate stands at 0.051 percent.

  • 1918 influenza pandemic: 50 million deaths globally. World population: 1.8 billion, or 2.7 percent. US fatalities: 675,000 or 0.65 percent on a per capita basis out of a population of 103 million.
  • 1957 H2N2 flu virus 1.1 million deaths globally. World population: 2.9 billion, or 0.038 percent on a per capita basis. US fatalities: 116,000 out of a U.S. population of 178 million, or 0.065 percent on a per capita basis.
  • 1968 H3N2 virus 1 million fatalities globally. World population: 3.6 billion, or 0.028 percent on a per capita basis. US fatalities: 100,000 out of a population of 203 million, or 0.049 percent on a per capita basis.
  • 2009 H1N1 virus 284,000 fatalities globally and 12,469 fatalities in the U.S. Per capita fatality rates were the same (.004 percent on a per capita basis).
  • CIOVID-19 as of August 14: 20.97 million cases. World population: 7.8 billion. Confirmed global fatalities were 760,371, or 0.009 percent on a per capita basis. US fatalities 169,488 out of an existing population of 331 million, or 0.051 percent on a per capita basis.

Source: Marshall Auerback via The Naked Capitalism.

An elephant’s 1700-mile pandemic trip

What an uplifting story about an elephant who spent most of her life in captivity, alone and finally found a friend and a place to roam free. If anything, just think of our past few months, and then imagine who hard past 25 years must have been for this animal. As an invasive species, it might be time for us to really rethink our planet in context with its other inhabitants. #nontech

How to move an elephant 1700-miles in the middle of a pandemic? / The New York Times