21 May AI and the Corona Virus
Artificial Intelligence and Medicine
While we wait for Corona Virus vaccine, we might be wondering if AI might be able to help find a cure for the deadly disease.
DeepMind, OpenAI, and Facebook AI, and AWS Machine Learning have been pretty quiet during the pandemic. Of course, they were designed for marketing. There are a growing number of software applications solving challenging problems in digital marketing. Medicine might be next.
This post talks about human failings that could be corrected by AI and the surprising behavioral anomalies that could predict outbreaks.
NYU just reported that their AI system predicted with 70 to 80% accuracy which Corona Virus patients would get sickest. This is helpful since the Corona Virus is mutating and is very difficult for medical experts to predict. This is increasing interest in AI predictive analytics.
Another AI model being developed in the UK uses data from the COVID Symptom Study app, which in just six weeks has grown to over 3 million people reporting their symptom. The AI model is able to predict COVID-19 infection without patients having to be tested, by comparing them with people who have used the app to share their symptoms and the results of traditional COVID tests.
AI could predict and warn all of us about disease threats and perhaps diagnosis diseases quickly and more accurately than people. It appears they’re already doing so. We just didn’t know about them. We’re learning more about Covid 19 and how it’s transmitted. For instance, it appears most of the spread is from a small number of super-spreaders.
We’re learning, and perhaps AI can help us learn faster.
Stock Prediction with AI
For the most part, everyone has forgotten about AI, except stock investors. Stock prediction companies are using AI to analyze historic data to forecast stock prices. Yes, AI stock prediction is a pretty handy thing in the stock markets, but what about medicine, vaccines, and pandemics? Learn more about stock prediction.
What Can AI Systems Tell You?
AI’s current capability is overhyped, but it doesn’t take too much imagination to see that it could detect anomalies in human behavior (doctor visits, test results hospital admissions, water treatment disease reports, ) to identify the spread of various diseases. The AI system could put out a warning to all.
AI Beats Human Researchers in Diagnosing Disease
A research project from University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust in the United Kingdom (graphic above) found that an AI system slightly outperformed health care professionals in diagnosing diseases.
If this is accurate, then medical experts can train the AI system to do even better. If we eliminate political bias from the data collection and diagnostics, which skew human judgement, the AI system has no limits.
The WHO Should be Disbanded
The old school concept of the WHO by government agencies isn’t good enough, perhaps even dishonest. Slow bureaucratic responses are a problem and WHO officials failed to earn their million dollar pay checks.
In fact, a Canadian top medical expert wasn’t big on the use of protective face masks. Yet, the US CDC department has adjusted its statement about Covid 19 transmission. The CDC now says aerosol transmission is more likely than surface transmission to cause infection.
We might have guessed that from sources such as New York subways, meat packing plants, office buildings, and retirement homes where air circulation provides ideal transport for the Covid 19. AI systems could have diagnosed that internal room air was the primary danger.
AI Can Compensate For Non-Transparency
Without AI, you have countries such as China (communist leaders) not being transparent, being untruthful, misleading with propaganda, and not providing their knowledge to the world about something so contagious.
Right now, we have an opportunity to look at solutions that don’t depend on any government’s transparency. It’s doubtful the communists will ever be open and forthright. But if AI can detect anomalies in Italy, New York, Spain, France, Taiwan, Hong Kong, we could curtail it fast.
Playing in the China P4 Lab
And any country that plays with deadly viruses in local laboratories has to be monitored closely. Corona Virus is no student learning specimen. It’s deadly. Artificial intelligence could give us all, in every country on the planet, advance warning about behavioral anomalies that something very bad has arrived. I’ll mention a good example below.
With Artificial Intelligence systems in place, all diseases could be tracked over time. It could be, if we had access to China’s data, we might be able to ascertain where the Covid 19 virus first appeared.
China was researching the Covid 19 virus and word is, it escaped the P4 lab accidentally and they allowed the virus to be distributed by jet all around the globe. It could be the disease had escaped earlier than they were aware and was adapting to its human lab worker victim.
The Covid 19 variant may not have been genetically altered by China’s lab scientists, but it could still have mutated. AI systems could detect and warn the world about mutation and possible disease routes.
Speed of Detection is the Solution
Let’s not forget how deadly these viruses are. The 1919 flu killed 30 million people. With genetic modification, such a virus could wipe out half of the population of the planet. The only defense is high level, fast responding, detection systems along with testing.
With international travel and food production systems, centralized drinking water, and mass transit, societies are very vulnerable to pandemics. Evil people know it well. These disease research labs are doing things that experts and protesters in the past were totally against. Their warnings were rejected by governments.
AI wouldn’t have blind trust in bad agents
If governments such as China and Russia’s communists along with North Korea and Iran’s totalitarian regimes won’t give direct access to data. But AI could be better at collecting data that humans can’t put together and analyze. Even if hidden, AI might be able to pick up “signals” in rare and infrequent events. And processing data is one of AI’s strengths.
Events That Warn of Dangers: Cell Phone Black Outs
One of those precursor events could be cell phone usage at the P4 lab in Wuhan, China, in early September 2019, where the virus breakout was said to start later in November (the first case). Apparently, cell phone usage at the P4 lab site went silent for one week, as though it had been locked down for about 7 days and no one was present at that property and in the building.
This kind of data tells you something significant happened there. Rarely is a building or city block shut down like that for one full week. Although China won’t cooperate with the world and divulge what happened, there may be ways to access this type of data.
AI systems are good at detecting these types of anomalies to warn AI scientists. They can be trained to ignore bad data too. We need them to be involved in detection of future virus outbreaks.
Detecting Evil and Careless Biolabs?
There are evil people working on genetically modifying these horrible threats so they can penetrate human cells (biological warfare). The next virus could be horrific, perhaps killing most of your community and family.
AI in Medicine: Mayo Clinic Radio
AI for Good
So far, AI has been improving product design and manufacturing, weather forecasts, and online marketing. The sphere of medicine and epidemic forecasting is cloaked in medical babble. If it’s left only to the medical community, we might not like the progress or the outcome.
It’s probably time to spread the word about artificial intelligence for the value it has, and overcome the media’s resistance to making use of it.
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