Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Tracking swine flu with Google Maps

FluTracker is a website that tracks the progress of swine flu using data from official sources, news reports and user-contributions*. The site was built using technology provided by Rhiza Labs and Google. This post on Mashable also has great information about tracking swine flu online.

Tracking epidemics was one of the first applications of geospatial information. In 1854, John Snow depicted a cholera outbreak in London using points to represent the locations of some individual cases, as mentioned on Wikipedia.

It also looks like someone is trying to make business out of this site. Check the bold section just above the map. Seems like everything can be exploited to make money.

I hope we don't see more circles, at least in our region. But I can't just stop here. I think that people, we, are very worried about pandemics and death. I mean, what if we track every sin all around the world?

(*) The main sources of information [on the web] today. Watch this great video of Eric Schmidt, Chairman and CEO of Google Inc., at the Newspaper Association of America on April 7, 2009.

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