Google in the service of medicine. An experimental model is developed by the team of the National Academy of Science , seems to be able to take advantage of online information sought by users in order to make accurate predictions about the occurrence of outbreaks in advance.This could allow in the future to develop and distribute vaccines in time to nip in the bud the spread of viruses.
In summary, the approach to the problem adopted by Jeffrey Shaman (Columbia University) and Alicia Karspeck (National Center for Atmospheric Research) has more than one point in common with what is happening in meteorology . If the weather report analyzes the data collected from stations located around the globe, it can be done just peeking through the queries that users submit to Google, to see in real time where you are multiplying cases of infection.
Google Flu Trends is the name of the project and have a relationship between the volume of searches for specific keywords such as “cold”, “flu”, “fever” or “drug influence” to the geographic location of the conduct, so as to play an alarm bell once exceeded a specified threshold. A system that, for the same admission of its creators, it still requires a long period of experimentation and refinement, but certainly the great potential.
At the time the study is concentrated on the area of New York, taken as a sample to determine its effectiveness. Analysis of the data covering the period between 2003 and 2008. Shaman and Karspeck said that in the future it will be possible to intervene early to prevent the development of outbreaks with at least seven weeks in advance. The time required to attend a practical application of the method are currently unknown: For the coming winter better be relying once again on warm clothes and vitamin C as a prevention system against the ‘ flu .