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SARS-CoV-2/COVID-19 Links

March 20, 2020 by Steven Ng

Why Is This Article Even Here?

I normally stick to business and tech topics, but the pandemic is an extraordinary event, perhaps the biggest global event of my lifetime. This pandemic affects everything and everyone. Business and tech aren't free of its impact, and it's going to be at the forefront of our consciousness for some time.

General Information

The most important piece that I've read so far has been Dr. Michael Lin's presentation on SARS-CoV-2/COVID-19. Dr. Lin is a PhD/MD who teaches at Stanford. His presentation covers many aspects of the virus and resulting disease, and is incredibly information dense. While there are a lot of scientific terms in it, I tend to think most people should be able to read and understand what he's trying to communicate.

Link to PDF Presentation

Original Source Tweet

Just a note, this is an American article, so "CA" is referring to California, not Canada.

Another note, Dr. Lin updates the document periodically, but that Google Drive link above should always have the latest version.

While there are other excellent long form pieces to read, this will be the only one I am linking at this moment, only because I know that many people don't want to read long form articles, and it's easy to get overwhelmed and stressed out by a deluge of information.

If, however, you are looking for a good list of curated long form articles, Jason Kottke has been posting and summarizing many of the ones he's been finding on his blog.

Mask Information

Information for Canadians

Important: The Government is not contacting people by phone, email, text or door-to-door offering free tests. These are scams, so please do not fall for them.

Informative Videos

I have found that YouTube channels have been much better at creating informative, educational content related to the virus and pandemic than the traditional TV news media. I'm biased, but I think clear explanations, with easy to understand visuals are a critical tool to get everyone on board with all of the measures being taken to prevent the rapid spread of the coronavirus.

The communication problem as outlined by a UX researcher..

Micro Droplets Suspending in Air

This is an interesting, if not gross, explanation of droplets being suspended in air after sneezing and loud talking, etc.

Micro droplets suspending in air from MixonK on Vimeo.

Should People Wear Masks?

CBC interviews a couple of doctors on this issue, including Dr. Michael Lin, whose PDF documented I linked at the top of this page.

Pandemic Preparedness in the Next Administration: Keynote Address by Anthony S. Fauci

A speech by Dr. Fauci made in early 2017 seems quite prescient today.

The Coronavirus Explained & What You Should Do

A very well researched and sourced video.

Why Fighting the Coronavirus Depends On You

This is the best explanation I've seen so far on "flattening the curve". Right now, I don't get the perception that most people realize that they will likely get the virus at some point, and are somewhat dismissive of social distancing efforts. Social distancing efforts in the west right now are all about managing load on the health care system.

As it relates to health care capacity in Canada:

If, for argument's sake, only 1% of Canada's population gets severe symptoms from a SARS-CoV-2 infection at around the same time, that's 370,000 people. Our entire health care system would collapse under the weight. That's why we need to flatten the curve. Everything we're doing is about managing load and slowing the spread. Vaccines are over a year away, SARS-CoV-2 is not going to disappear in that time period.

How Soap Kills The Coronavirus

Vox has a nice little video explaining how simple soap is a critical tool during this pandemic.

How Germs Spread

Mark Rober has an excellent video that will help you visualize the spread of germs.

TED Interview With BIll Gates

Bill Gates on how we must respond to the pandemic.gu

Why New Diseases Keep Appearing In China

Vox has an explainer on why zoonotic viruses keep appearing in China.

A couple of important notes:

  1. Not all wet markets are wildlife wet markets.
  2. If you are looking to allocate responsibility, focus on the policies that allow wildlife markets to exist, and the small number of individuals/entities responsible for those policies. Please don't go around blaming an entire ethnicity or country's population for an outbreak, because a) that blame is misplaced, and b) it's racist and/or xenophobic. I debated as to whether to include this video, and I did so with the good faith belief that everyone is capable of critical thinking. Please don't prove me wrong.

Supplementary viewing/reading for this particular video:

Web Tools

Impact

Let's all remember that the impact to society isn't just medical. There's a huge economic cost as well. People who can't afford to miss work will be impacted severely. Businesses will close, many permanently.