Coronavirus in Context is a weekly publication the place we convey you information that matter about the COVID-19 pandemic and the know-how attempting to cease its unfold. You’ll be able to subscribe here.

As I discussed throughout final week’s Large Spam takeover, I’m Tristan. I write for TNW and I’m the editor of Neural, however currently my job’s been all about COVID-19. I don’t know the way you’re feeling, however my psychological well being isn’t precisely peak proper now.

I’m wired, a bit of anxious, and fairly anxious. And I’m not alone. The National Institute of Health says we’re all more likely to really feel some further pressure throughout these attempting occasions.

Why’s this a giant deal? As a result of stress and isolation are a horrible cocktail. Keep in mind Castaway starring Tom Hanks — who, satirically is quarantining after testing constructive for coronavirus — and his co-star Wilson the volleyball? It seems that isolation can cause hallucinations and inspire a tendency to talk to inanimate objects. Now, many people are fortunate sufficient to have entry to smartphones and the web, so we’re a methods off from that, nevertheless it undoubtedly brings me consolation to grasp the science behind it.

Fortunately for everybody, there are some easy issues we are able to do to mitigate this stress. Here’s a really good article on dealing with stress through the COVID-19 outbreak from the Middle for Illness Management. And here’s some advice on coping with isolation and stress from somebody who spent almost a yr by themselves inside a tiny spaceship. And right here’s some science-based suggestions for good measure. 

Me? I’ve been taking part in my guitar. Final yr I wrote about how stressed-out STEM employees ought to study to play an instrument and now I’d like to increase that recommendation to your entire planet. Right here’s an image of me with my guitar as proof:

It’s inconceivable for me to dwell on mortality charges or an infection vectors whereas I’m head-banging my face off taking part in some Jack Johnson (choose me all you need, however my rendition of “Banana Pancakes” appears like one thing from a Deftones b-side – totally on accident). Enjoying music lets me create and management one thing in the midst of all of the chaos.

Most of us aren’t ready to create a vaccine, make enormous authorities selections, or remedy world points associated to the pandemic. However all of us can do one thing to make a distinction: We could be extra affected person and sort with one another.

And for those who’re the boss – somebody who can authorize further time without work – make your individuals take psychological well being days and go away work early to “de-stress.” Most of all, usually simply don’t be a company goon. Your income can wait, your individuals’s psychological and bodily well being gained’t.

By the numbers

Final week we seemed on the reported COVID-19 instances and deaths juxtaposed towards the H1N1 “swine flu” pandemic from 2009. 

This week we’re how lengthy the swine flu and SARS outbreaks lasted versus how lengthy consultants predict the COVID-19 pandemic will final. 

  • eight months  The SARS epidemic lasted from November 2002 till July 2003. (World Health Organization
  • 12 Months — The H1N1 swine flu outbreak lasted from April 2009 to April 2010. (Live Science)
  • 12 – 18 months — Consultants at the moment challenge COVID-19 will final 12-18 months from November 2019. (Imperial College London)

Tweet threads of the week


What to learn

Amazon Prime, digital dinners, and “social distancing” vs. “self-quarantine”…

  • Trump’s giving everybody within the US some stimulus cash, however the dastardly Democrats maintain blocking the invoice… as a result of it comprises a $500 billion slush-fund for companies with little or no safety for employees. (CNN)
  • “Amazon is hiring aggressively to fulfill buyer demand. Site visitors has soared on Fb and YouTube. And cloud computing has grow to be important to dwelling employees.” Right here’s how Large Tech is definitely benefiting from the pandemic. (The New York Times)
  • The machines are searching the virus: Israel’s utilizing AI to foretell the place coronavirus will unfold subsequent.
  • This pandemic isn’t happening like the flicks. Right here’s why you shouldn’t anticipate any mass panic. (Wired)
  • From knowledge journalist Mona Chalabi:

Credit score: Nowness

  • Don’t let social distancing spoil Sunday dinner. When you can’t get collectively on the desk, break bread on-line. Right here’s how
  • Futurist Yuval Noah Harari wrote an extended learn dissecting the morals and ethics of biometric surveillance, and why how we act now will change our lives. (Financial Times $)
  • P.S. When you can’t afford an FT subscription, the audio model is offered on Curio, on which you’ll be able to hearken to a restricted variety of tales totally free — however we advocate supporting both!
  • This handy website tells you protected locations close by you possibly can go to through the COVID-19 pandemic.


We all know, we all know… there are 1,000,000 articles on the market on find out how to keep sane at dwelling: What yoga strikes to do, what sourdough bread to bake, find out how to decide up a telephone and truly name somebody… so we’re including to the noise!

On this part, one among our writers will share one bizarre web factor they’ve been obsessing over whereas in lockdown. Subsequent is from Callum Sales space:

A couple of weeks in the past, somebody mentioning psytrance would’ve elicited solely a pithy remark. You understand, one thing like “oh, the music for white boys with dreads?” However these are unusual occasions…

After being proven a video of a stay psytrance efficiency by somebody I’m not going to publicly disgrace, I started to tumble down a rabbit hole.

Is the music good? After all not. But it surely was by some margin the very best psytrance I’d ever listened to. Which, I suppose, is like saying the very best toxic mushroom that makes you shit your self to loss of life.

Anyway, this monitor led to a dialogue about psytrance dance kinds. And this, in flip, compelled me on an journey to observe some individuals doing psytrance dances. Here’s an example.

Then, throughout this search, I got here throughout the promised video. The ultimate a part of the psytrance puzzle. You’ll be able to watch it in order for you, however that’s not why it’s so good:  “Sorry about not shufflin all through, four Years of this shit has taken its toll on my left knee and I additionally smoke like a chimney and must breath, So sweaty, Yum.”

I may write 1000’s of phrases on why that’s probably the best sentence in human historical past, however that may be lacking the purpose. Can’t we, in these horrible occasions, simply take pleasure in one thing for what it’s?

That’s it from Callum! Again to Tristan:

We’ll be again subsequent Tuesday. Till then, be type to your fellow people. Take into account that we’re all going via loads. And please don’t take recommendation from strangers on the web.

As a substitute, right here’s some official assets for individuals who are experiencing poor psychological well being or know somebody who’s:

Keep wholesome and handle one another,



Corona protection

Learn our day by day protection on how the tech business is responding to the coronavirus and subscribe to our weekly publication Coronavirus in Context.

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