Data science and new technology - especially artificial intelligence - are playing a major role in the fight against the coronavirus, and even a possible cure, as the pandemic continues to spread across the world.
One AI company, Infervision, has launched a coronavirus AI solution designed to help front-line healthcare workers detect and monitor the disease efficiently.
With imaging departments in healthcare facilities being overwhelmed by the increased workload created by the virus, the Infervision solution is claimed to improve CT diagnosis speed. Meanwhile, Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba has also built an AI-powered diagnosis system, which it claims is 96% accurate at diagnosing the virus in seconds.
Google’s DeepMind division is also working on the disease. It has used its latest AI algorithms and its computing power to understand the proteins that might make up the virus, and published the findings to help others develop treatments.
BenevolentAI uses AI systems to build drugs that can fight the world’s toughest diseases and is now helping support the efforts to treat coronavirus, the first time the company has focused its product on infectious diseases. Within weeks of the outbreak, it used its predictive capabilities to propose existing drugs that might be useful.
Cloud computing and supercomputers are also being deployed. Several major tech companies such as Tencent, DiDi, and Huawei are also using a data-driven approach to fast-track the development of a cure or vaccine for the virus. The speed these systems can run calculations and model solutions is much faster than standard computer processing.
Futurologist Bernard Marr said: "In a global pandemic such as Covid-19, technology, artificial intelligence, and data science have become critical to helping societies effectively deal with the outbreak."