Different cough coverings, varying air spread

From researchers at Bauhaus-University Weimar, this video shows how various methods of covering a cough change the spread of air from your mouth.

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Social distancing isn’t available for everyone

For Reuters, Chris Canipe looks at social distancing from the perspective of household income:

Anonymized smartphone data in the United States shows some interesting trends. People in larger cities and urban corridors were more likely to change their travel habits, especially in early March. By the end of the month, most U.S. residents were traveling dramatically less than they did in February, but social and demographic differences were strong predictors of how much that changed.

The above shows median change in distance traveled against median household income by county. Note the downwards trend showing counties with lower median incomes with less change in travel.

For many, it’s not possible to work from home or it isn’t safe to stay at home. Don’t be too quick to judge.

An aside: There are bigger things to concentrate on right now, but after this is all done, I feel like we need to think more about who has access to our location via cellphone. Clearly the data has its uses, but that’s not always going to be the case.

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✚ Useful Distractions for Chartmakers – The Process 083

Here are some useful distractions for you as you stay-at-home and wait for an unknown amount of time. Read More

County stay-at-home orders and change in distance traveled

Based on cellphone data from Cuebiq, The New York Times looked at how different parts of the country reduced their travel between the end of February and the end of March. Some counties really stayed at home. Some not so much:

In areas where public officials have resisted or delayed stay-at-home orders, people changed their habits far less. Though travel distances in those places have fallen drastically, last week they were still typically more than three times those in areas that had imposed lockdown orders, the analysis shows.

The streets are quiet here in northern California, so this is pretty shocking for me. If you can, stay at home, folks. It’s inconvenient, but it’s a small sacrifice for something much bigger.

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Maps of grounded flights after Covid-19

As you would expect, not many people are flying these days. The Washington Post mapped the halts around the world:

On Tuesday, the TSA screened just over 146,000 passengers at U.S. airports, a 94 percent plunge from 2.4 million on the same day last year. By the end of March, the TSA screened just over 35 million passengers at U.S. airports during the month, a 50 percent decrease from more than 70 million at the end of March last year.

At this point, I would gladly wait a couple of hours in a security line for just a taste of normalcy.

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Challenges of making a reliable Covid-19 model

Fatalities from Covid-19 range from the hundreds of thousands to the millions. Nobody knows for sure. These predictions are based on statistical models, which are based on data, which aren’t consistent and reliable yet. FiveThirtyEight, whose bread and butter is models and forecasts, breaks down the challenges of making a model and why they haven’t provided any.

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Evolution of Census questions

On the surface, the decennial census seems straightforward. Count everyone in the country and you’re done. But the way we’ve done that has changed over the decades. The Pudding and Alec Barrett of TWO-N looked at the changes through the lens of questions asked:

We looked at every question on every census from 1790 to 2020. The questions—over 600 in total—tell us a lot about the country’s priorities, norms, and biases in each decade. They depict an evolving country: a modernizing economy, a diversifying population, an imperfect but expanding set of civil and human rights, and a growing list of armed conflicts in its memory. What themes and trends will you notice?

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Simulating an epidemic

3Blue1Brown goes into more of the math of SIR models — which drive many of the simulations you’ve seen so far — that assume people are susceptible, infectious, or recovered.

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Toilet Paper Calculator

Maybe you're starting to run low. Here's how much you'll need when you go to restock. Read More

Coronavirus data at the state and county level, from The New York Times

Comprehensive national data on Covid-19 has been hard to come by through government agencies. The New York Times released their own dataset and will be updating regularly:

The tracking effort grew from a handful of Times correspondents to a large team of journalists that includes experts in data and graphics, staff news assistants and freelance reporters, as well as journalism students from Northwestern University, the University of Missouri and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. The reporting continues nearly all day and night, seven days a week, across U.S. time zones, to record as many details as possible about every case in real time. The Times is committed to collecting as much data as possible in connection with the outbreak and is collaborating with the University of California, Berkeley, on an effort in that state.

You can download the state- and county-level aggregates on GitHub.

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