Coronavirus in Context is a weekly e-newsletter the place we deliver you information that matter about the COVID-19 pandemic and the know-how making an attempt to cease its unfold. You may subscribe here.

As I discussed throughout final week’s Massive 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 stressed, a little bit anxious, and fairly anxious. And I’m not alone. The National Institute of Health says we’re all prone to really feel some additional pressure throughout these making an attempt occasions.

Why’s this a giant deal? As a result of stress and isolation are a horrible cocktail. Bear in mind Castaway starring Tom Hanks — who, satirically is quarantining after testing optimistic 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, however it positively brings me consolation to know the science behind it.

Fortunately for everybody, there are some easy issues we will do to mitigate this stress. Here’s a really good article on dealing with stress in the course of 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 practically a 12 months 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 12 months I wrote about how stressed-out STEM employees ought to be taught to play an instrument and now I’d like to increase that recommendation to all the planet. Right here’s an image of me with my guitar as proof:

It’s unimaginable 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 (decide me all you need, however my rendition of “Banana Pancakes” seems like one thing from a Deftones b-side – totally on accident). Enjoying music lets me create and management one thing in the course of all of the chaos.

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

And when you’re the boss – somebody who can authorize additional day without work – make your folks take psychological well being days and depart work early to “de-stress.” Most of all, typically simply don’t be a company goon. Your income can wait, your folks’s psychological and bodily well being received’t.

By the numbers

Final week we regarded on the reported COVID-19 circumstances 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 present mission 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 hold blocking the invoice… as a result of it incorporates 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 Massive Tech is definitely benefiting from the pandemic. (The New York Times)
  • The machines are looking the virus: Israel’s utilizing AI to foretell the place coronavirus will unfold subsequent.
  • This pandemic isn’t taking place like the flicks. Right here’s why you shouldn’t anticipate any mass panic. (Wired)
  • From information journalist Mona Chalabi:

Credit score: Nowness

  • Don’t let social distancing wreck Sunday dinner. For those who 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. For those who can’t afford an FT subscription, the audio model is out there on Curio, on which you’ll be able to take heed to a restricted variety of tales free of charge — however we advocate supporting both!
  • This handy website tells you secure locations close by you may go to in the course of the COVID-19 pandemic.


We all know, we all know… there are one million 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 choose up a telephone and really name somebody… so we’re including to the noise!

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

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

After being proven a video of a dwell 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 most effective psytrance I’d ever listened to. Which, I assume, is like saying the most effective toxic mushroom that makes you shit your self to demise.

Anyway, this monitor led to a dialogue about psytrance dance types. And this, in flip, compelled me on an journey to observe some folks 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 may watch it if you’d like, however that’s not why it’s so good:  “Sorry about not shufflin all over, four Years of this shit has taken its toll on my left knee and I additionally smoke like a chimney and have to breath, So sweaty, Yum.”

I might write hundreds of phrases on why that’s presumably the best sentence in human historical past, however that will be lacking the purpose. Can’t we, in these horrible occasions, simply get pleasure from one thing for what it’s?

That’s it from Callum! Again to Tristan:

We’ll be again subsequent Tuesday. Till then, be form to your fellow people. Needless to say we’re all going by means of lots. And please don’t take recommendation from strangers on the web.

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

Keep wholesome and deal with one another,



Learn subsequent:

AI snitches on naughty Brits who won’t stay home during coronavirus pandemic

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