Time to rethink predicting pandemic infection rates? — ScienceDaily

During the first months of the COVID-19 pandemic, Joseph Lee McCauley, a physics professor at the University of Houston, was watching the daily data for six countries and wondered if infections were really growing exponentially. By extracting the doubling times from the data, he became convinced they were.

Doubling times and exponential growth go hand in hand, so it became clear to him that modeling based on past infections is impossible, because the rate changes unforeseeably from day to day due to social distancing and lockdown efforts. And the rate changes differ for each country based on the extent of their social distancing.

In AIP Advances, from AIP Publishing, McCauley explains how he combined math in the form of Tchebychev’s inequality with a statistical ensemble to understand how macroscopic exponential growth with different daily rates arise from person-to-person disease infection.

“Discretized ordinary chemical kinetic equations applied to infected, uninfected,

Read More

Predicting urban water needs — ScienceDaily

The gateway to more informed water use and better urban planning in your city could already be bookmarked on your computer. A new Stanford University study identifies residential water use and conservation trends by analyzing housing information available from the prominent real estate website Zillow.

The research, published Nov. 18 in Environmental Research Letters, is the first to demonstrate how new real estate data platforms can be used to provide valuable water use insights for city housing and infrastructure planning, drought management and sustainability.

“Evolving development patterns can hold the key to our success in becoming more water-wise and building long-term water security,” said study senior author Newsha Ajami, director of urban water policy at Stanford’s Water in the West program. “Creating water-resilient cities under a changing climate is closely tied to how we can become more efficient in the way we use water as our population grows.”


Read More

Past is key to predicting future climate, scientists say — ScienceDaily

An international team of climate scientists suggests that research centers around the world using numerical models to predict future climate change should include simulations of past climates in their evaluation and statement of their model performance.

“We urge the climate model developer community to pay attention to the past and actively involve it in predicting the future,” said Jessica Tierney, the paper’s lead author and an associate professor in the University of Arizona’s Department of Geosciences. “If your model can simulate past climates accurately, it likely will do a much better job at getting future scenarios right.”

As more and better information becomes available about climates in Earth’s distant history, reaching back many millions of years before humans existed, past climates become increasingly relevant for improving our understanding of how key elements of the climate system are affected by greenhouse gas levels, according to the study’s authors. Unlike historic climate

Read More

How Predicting The Future Has Changed For Automotive In 2020

There are no crystal balls. There are no Zoltar machines at arcades that will accurately tell the future. But for automotive marketing departments, they nevertheless must predict society’s needs five to ten years into the future. Connected? Autonomous? Electric? All of these transformative, step-function changes were already making 2020 a difficult year of soothsaying, and then POOF! Covid-19 hits, and all predictions based upon historical extrapolations seemingly become a metaphorical walk on an unsupported plank. Will ridesharing truly become non-existent? Will commuting miles be “a 20th century” thing? Will California’s 2035 edict and Tesla’s $25k vehicle make the electric vehicle real rather than an on-again, off-again governmental hope? And how will an explosive U.S. election affect the global marketplace? In the end, how

Read More

Predicting the Future Role of Telemedicine

As with any disruptive healthcare innovation, it takes time, validation, and the right catalyst before it becomes fully embraced across the medical community. With the coronavirus pandemic, one innovation is at the forefront of transforming the healthcare landscape – telemedicine.  
Since February 2020, telemedicine grew from less than 1% of primary care visits to nearly 43.5% in April 2020. With telemedicine’s current trajectory and rapid adoption rate, it has the potential to disrupt and redefine the way health systems operate, deliver care and manage costs, setting the stage for a vastly different healthcare experience in the future.
To illustrate the impact telemedicine will make in the future, we asked healthcare leaders and telemedicine providers from multiple specialties how they anticipate telemedicine reshaping the future healthcare landscape.

1. Telemedicine will become a standard service offered across all care settings
“With patients becoming accustomed to the level of access telemedicine provides, I

Read More