Computers and the Flu

I was reluctant to enter this media frenzy about H1N1 flu (or whatever we end up calling it…), but only 8% of telephone respondents are “not concerned at all” about these events, so I thought I’d say something more than nothing.

Information technology’s main contribution so far has been the rapid spread of misinformation: for example, eating pork is no less safe than usual, despite rumors to the contrary twittering around the globe.

But there is an opportunity for IT to shine a little bit, too. I’m optimistic about Ushihidi’s web2.0 approach to “crowdsourcing crisis information”. Definitely something I can spend too much time looking at.

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One response to “Computers and the Flu

  1. Names for this flu:

    swine flu
    H1N1 flu (championed by pork industry lobbying groups)
    North American flu (also supported by the pork industry)
    NAFTA flu (from Democracy Now guest Robert Wallace)
    Mexican flu (proposed by the Israeli health minister)
    Swine-origin Influenza A (H1N1) Virus Infection (approved by CDC)