The coronavirus outbreak sparked an unprecedented health crisis met by the deployment of important resources. One of these is the use of technology. From hospitals to work-from-home setups, technology changed the way the world tries to survive and thrive during these uncertain times. Technology is trying to hold things together while the virus continues to break families apart, take lives, and threaten economies. It is the glue that’s keeping the world intact.
Big Data for the Virus’ Genetic Tree
The scientific community uses an open-source platform to share information about SARS-CoV-2’s genetic tree. The data, sequencing, and visualizations provided in the project help scientists around the world track the mutations of the virus. This information will help epidemiologists and scientists find a vaccine and a cure. It will also help them understand how it transmits from one carrier to another. As the world waits for a vaccine, this project becomes responsible for the conclusion that the virus does not change its severity as it spreads from person to person.
The coronavirus is putting a strain on the country’s health care sector. Hospital beds are filled to capacity. Emergency rooms have to turn away patients. People who suffer from non-Covid-19 symptoms are so afraid to go to the doctor that they end up being more severe than Covid-19 patients. Thankfully, technology can come to the rescue.
Telemedicine platforms and apps allow patients and doctors to consult virtually. A patient can log on to the app and find a doctor. The consultation will happen online without a need for face-to-face interaction. The doctors can prescribe medicine and send the information to the pharmacy nearest the patient. Everything happens online, reducing the need for personal meetings.
The government turned to digital transactions to put less pressure on workers who have to process documents, claims, and other such things. You can transact online with banks, government agencies, and insurance companies. These agencies and companies are using artificial intelligence to answer inquiries. They are also helping solve problems. The technology is available across many platforms such as apps, text messaging, social media, and websites.
In the real estate sector, borrowers can log on to a platform to check mortgage rates. They can also apply for mortgages through the lenders’ websites and apps. But not only that. If you are a potential homebuyer, you can attend an open house virtually. A virtual tour takes you around the property. It’s almost the same as checking out the property’s amenities in person.
When the government announced strict restrictions on movements in March, a lot of businesses have to shut their physical operations. The coronavirus forced these companies to consider a permanent work-from-home setup. Now that the restrictions have eased, quite a huge number of businesses decided to continue their work-from-home setups. It’s a cost-efficient system that allows workers to stay at home and practice physical distancing while also completing their tasks at work.
Some of the most popular applications for teleconferencing are Zoom, Skype, Google Hangouts, WhatsApp, and Facebook Messenger. Software developers have to work double-time to increase the capabilities of their platforms. Zoom, for example, can accommodate up to 100 participants in a single call. That can increase to 1000 with the Large Meeting add-on.
These tools are also essential to keeping families and friends together. They use video calls to communicate and spend time “together.” These tools are especially helpful for people who live alone and want to connect with family and friends. One of the drawbacks of the enforced physical and social distancing is the anxiety and depression that comes from the loss of human touch and interaction. These video-call platforms help keep people stay connected even if they have to do it virtually.
In fact, users of these platforms have become so resourceful and creative. Parents hold birthday parties for their children with the rest of the family attending it online. Church leaders conduct mass online. Couples got married virtually, too. Even artists use these video-call tools to hold virtual concerts.
Look around you. Technology has touched everything you see—from the system that cools your home right down to that smartphone you hold in your hands. The world has seen how technology altered the landscapes of business, health, government, and society. But during these unprecedented and uncertain times, technology proved again that with proper use, it can make things better and easier. In its true fashion and with the right human intervention, technology brought the world to the new norm.