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Researchers Use World of Warcraft to Study Real-World Response to Disease

Testing Disease Response From Corrupted Blood WoW EventThe New York Times has a story about a group of researchers who examined the outbreak of the in-game disease ‘corrupted blood,’ originally designed to affect only high-level characters, for clues about what the social response might be to an actual pandemic. The game provided the authors of a research paper set to be published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases journal a unique set of conditions for this research that had typically been difficult to simulate: A wide population, an emotional response (because WoW players get really attached to their characters) and the ability to disseminate information among the population.

The corrupted blood outbreak was a glitch in WoW that took place in September 2005 and provided a unique look at the responses both by the population and the “bug:”

As the virus spread, very real challenges emerged, such as the failure of quarantine measures, further transmission by character’s pets and the existence of “immune” characters, who act as carriers, passing the virus to others while failing to succumb to symptoms.

It’s a fascinating use of the social construct that WoW has become.

Read More | Times Online via Slashdot


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10 Reasons Why I Don’t Embrace Technology

Posted by Monica Edwards Categories: Business, Personal,

techI have a need to plead my case because a soon to be released video review of my thoughts of the paints a picture of me as someone who "hates" technology. This is not a true depiction of my feelings as I believe that "hate" is a strong word, and I try not to use it loosely. There are not many things I hate, but there are things I can do without. I also wanted to make it clear that since my husband's world revolves around the tech world, I support him in all that he does, and if not for technology, he would not have a job and we would not be so greatly blessed. But, it does not mean that I have to embrace all that comes with his choice of career. So, here are 10 reasons why I don't embrace technology wholeheartedly.

Click to continue reading 10 Reasons Why I Don’t Embrace Technology


A Question for the Presidential Candidates

Posted by Monica Edwards Categories: Family, Personal, political,

SickoI am not, in the least, a person one would describe as politically active or knowledgeable in any way. I try not to be naive about what is going on in our government or our world for that matter but I don't take pride in the fact that I am not as versed in the world of politics as it pertains to me, as I should or would like to be. That is why I am surprised to find myself so impassioned to write about a subject I never questioned or realized was so defunct. My husband and I were able to view the documentary by Michael Moore entitled Sicko before it was released in theaters, via the internet. So I have had a few weeks to let the movie's message brew and I have been able to ascertain how this low-budget documentary could transform our failing healthcare system now that the average American has access to the facts. It is up to each one of us to elect the man or woman who can focus their attention on a system of healthcare that is in such dire straits that even receiving basic care is a joke. It is a poor representation of a nation that calls itself a Superpower.

Click to continue reading A Question for the Presidential Candidates


Bleeding Edge 061: A Look At Vizrea

We took a trip down to Vizrea headquarters to get a first-hand look at the Vizrea service and the people that make the magic happen behind the scenes. We sat down with Vizrea CEO Mike Toutonghi to get a look at how the social network and sharing service works on both mobile phones, within the Vizrea service, as well as locally on your own client PC.

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Read More | Vizrea

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