Covid19 Spread Is All About Mathematic

Aug 10, 2020 5:45 AM ET

Our world – as we know it – have come to a still. There is no more shopping, no movie night, no Meetup, and even no office. Thanks to Covid19 we all are stuck and don’t know what to do anymore. The condition seems dire and getting serious day by day. With the spread of Corona Virus – we came across with some extreme examples of stupidity. Just when we thought that the era of tide-pod-eating was over – we are faced with people who think that wearing a mask equals to oppression. Every other day, we watch videos of Americans ranting at poor salesperson that the constitution gave them a right to live as they want – they are free people in the free land – but is this land virus-free? Can you ban Corona Virus through building walls? Well, the answer is an absolute no! 

As our plant became a global village – the distances were minimized and getting into another country is way easier than it was previously. With this ease of travel comes the issue of the foreign virus but in case of Covid19 – it’s not about the origin, it’s all about math. Let’s get over the fact that when and where the virus was originated. We are way past that stage and the sad reality is – Covid19 is here and it is here to stay. We failed to design a vaccine and till we don’t – everyone is at risk. 

We call ourselves the smartest species inhabiting this planet and yet we fail to understand the logic behind simple things. One of such thing is precaution against virus. Wearing a mask and practice social distancing are the most sensible methods to prevent the spread of Covid19 and people are asking the rationale behind it. Let me make it clear for everyone – social distancing is based on a mathematical concept known as exponential growth. 

The Phenomenon Of Exponential Growth

Nature is full of wonders and one of the wonders is exponential growth. Have you ever witness how many puppies are there is a litter or how a tree can spread its seed and produce many more trees? The phenomenon of accelerated reproduction is known as exponential growth in mathematics. Viruses follow the same growth pattern when they spread. Exponential growth is one of the most amazing assets of nature. Let me demonstrate this announcement with an easy example. In 1859, there was an English Farmer Thomas Austin. He moved to Australia and carried 24 hares with him. The hares loved the earth and began to reproduce. By 1865, in under 6 years, the quantity of hare populace raised to 2 billion. Same formula is being followed in case of Covid19 spread!

Patient 1 was responsible for spreading the virus to 2.5 individuals, each of them infected 2.5 person respectively and the virus transmission rate exploded. Each infected person is expected to infect a certain number of people which is estimated to be around 2.5 right now, who each in turn go on to infect 2.5 more, and on and on, unless drastic measures are taken to reduce social contact and isolate the infected from others. To evaluate the scope of the infection, think about counting doubles – 1, 2, 4, 8, 16, 32, 64 and so on. How many times would you have to double to get to more than 1 million? 20. How many doubles to get to more than 16 million? 24. Human population also follow the exponential growth pattern thus we are short of natural resources as the population of the world is growing exponentially. Since past few decades, we are listening to the debates discussion alarming rate of population growth and now the debate switched to Covid19 but the issue remains the same. 

Does Social Distancing Really Work?

It’s time to utilize the most powerful tool – logic. What happen when you are accidently exposed to radiation? You have go through the procedure where fluid and tissue samples are taken to evaluate if the radiation was absorbed by your body or not. If the results are affirmative, you are isolated to a facility for a specific period of time. Safety always come first and this is the standard procedure – same is the case with Covid19. If social distancing is practiced religiously, it can bring fruitful results in terms of decrease the number of cases. Less physical contact can minimize the spread of the virus and hence negatively affect the exponential growth phenomenon. 

The smartest choice in these times is to be safe and be concerned about the safety of others. The only way out of this situation is precaution in the form of social distancing. 

If you are interested in learning more about exponential growth or want to experience some of the best online calculators, click here


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