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The Flu (Health)
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Boreades


In: finity and beyond
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Glad to read that our Wiley Coyote has had a sniff of the Imperial model, and the reviews of the source code (such as it is). Does it smell like something the Road Runner "deposited"?

Lockdown Skeptics continued with a Round Two, and landed quite a few more heavyweight blows.

https://lockdownsceptics.org/second-analysis-of-fergusons-model/

One of the essential features with GitHub (and version control in general) is that it maintains a history of changes, or an audit trail. All seasoned and experienced software developers know this is a Good Thing. Sometimes a new version has new features that creates unintended, unstable or unforeseen results. So an honest and conscientious software developer(s) would roll back to a previous version, fix the issue(s), and save a new version, while maintaining the history. Why? So that in (say) a year's time people can still see what was changed, when, and why.

But as the discussion on GitHub reveals ( https://github.com/mrc-ide/covid-sim/issues/144 ), the Imperial Team decided to delete the history of changes, to make it appear to the general public that the published version was the only version. Sadly, they didn't know that "deleting" a version in GitHub just marks it as "not visible anymore". If anyone knows the previous version number, it can still be found.

It makes it even more clear that not only were the Imperial team low-grade software developers, they weren't even very good at removing the evidence.

The previous version has been found to contain even more bugs, that made the results even more random. How to explain how crap this makes the whole model? As a pseudo-random number generator, it could have been used for predicting lottery numbers. If you run it (say) 100 times, and then average the random numbers, do you magically have an "accurate" number? Good enough to "predict" next week's lottery numbers and spend money on a wodge of tickets?

Good to see that at least one inmate of the House of Commons has been following the sorry saga, but I'm not sure what influence he might have?

https://twitter.com/SteveBakerHW/status/1258165810629087232
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Mick Harper
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In: London
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But surely all this is irrelevant. Nobody elsewhere in the world has been listening to Imperial and they have been doing all the things we've been doing. I accept that pandemonia-ology is in that dangerous territory of believing it knows what's going on and has the clout to get the rest of us believing it too, but that is the case with the whole of academia and will not cease from causing us mortal strife until we close the lot of them down. They're nothing special.
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Ishmael


In: Toronto
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Grant wrote:
The real cause of this hysteria is that over the last thirty years we have funded various medical bodies and told them: here's money - now protect us. These bodies have been desperately bigging up pandemics ever since.


You've so perfectly nailed it.
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Alfred Wegener


In: Newcastle upon Tyne
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Reluctant as I am to wade in to this morass... Clearly not all models are equal and most are wrong but some are useful. However, throwing our collective arms in the air and declaring a pox on all their houses is simply not helpful. We need honesty and clarity when analysing their models and also the foundations and assumptions they are based on.

This virus is real however and a denialist approach is not going to assist in a collective response.
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Mick Harper
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In: London
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I can see why you were reluctant, Alf.
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Wile E. Coyote


In: Arizona
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Boreades wrote:
Glad to read that our Wiley Coyote has had a sniff of the Imperial model, and the reviews of the source code (such as it is). Does it smell like something the Road Runner "deposited"?



One of the flags of fake data analytics is if it is not properly coded.

“For me the code is not a mess, but it’s all in my head, completely undocumented. Nobody would be able to use it . . . and I don’t have the bandwidth to support individual users.”


Would you buy into that as the basis of marketing your Chateaux Boro brand?
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Mick Harper
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In: London
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But we must welcome the prodigal. What, Alfred, leads you to suppose that anyone here denies the coronavirus is a virus (the clue is in the name). And when are we to expect your honest and clear analysis, and the foundations and assumptions it is based on?
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Alfred Wegener


In: Newcastle upon Tyne
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Thanks for the opportunity Mick...

I could start with 'If true, this certainly finishes the germ theory of disease once and for all.' Which I think was the comment which provided me with some worrisome thoughts.

In terms of my analysis it is a big subject. A novel virus was always going to happen - it was not 'if' but 'when'. We were in places ill-prepared and the level of scientific knowledge in the general populace has not helped.

China's initial 'crush the rebellion' and deny everything approach was always a hindrance but no matter the source of the virus an outbreak of an airborne pathogen has been a concern among virologists for years.

We are now living with a pandemic illness with a mortality rate which could be 0.5-3% depending on your gender, race, BMI, co-morbidities and initial viral load acquired.

An additional complication is the prodrome phase of infectivity whilst being asymptomatic, which has lead to rapid transmission in densely populated areas.

In the absence of an effective and safe vaccine the world (with the exception of a few completely locked down jurisdictions) will lurch from phase to phase of pandemic outbreaks.
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Mick Harper
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You've been warned before, Mr Wegener. Hatty went to the trouble of laying out your previous post but either you conform to the very simple, and very sensible, layout demands we insist on i.e. short paras, line space between each, or I shall not read, nor shall I reply and I will not serve. © Lyndon Baines Johnson 1968.
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Alfred Wegener


In: Newcastle upon Tyne
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If formatting is more important from an epistemological viewpoint than intelligent debate then I concede.
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Mick Harper
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In: London
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A false dichotomy, Herr Wagonmaster. It requires a small effort to format but has a large effect on uptake. Everyone understands this, including you, Mme Bovary. The truth is, and it applies to others on this site, the inability to express oneself in paragraphs is a sure sign of an inability to think in paragraphs. I've enjoyed our time together but do not let me detain you. We have so many active posters we can't afford to be choosy but in your case I am not going to make an exception.
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Grant



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The fault in Alfred's reasoning is that it assumes that the modellers can develop a model which actually works. It also assumes that if you pay people to investigate anything you will definitely get an answer worth listening to. But epidemiology is like economics - a pretend science which can predict nothing beyond the bleeding obvious. So what should we rely on? The answer is what has been ignored so far - experimental science
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Grant



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We've done the experiment. It was the cruise ship, the Diamond Princess. We allowed 2,000 mostly elderly people to live with 2,000 mostly third worlders in a metal box. We made them breathe the same air and wander around a dirty ship sharing buffet food and sitting next to each other for weeks on end. We have the results: only 15% got Coronavirus, of those half had no symptoms whatsoever. And 7 died - 0.2% of the total.

This must represent an upper bound of the numbers who will be affected in Europe and the US. Interestingly, it's just been announced that 17% of Londoners may have been infected according to the antibody tests
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Mick Harper
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Damn you, Grant, I'm now forced to read the wretched thing. And have you stopped paragraphing deliberately? [Later: Oh, Hatty has stepped in again, damn her cotton and bri-nylon socks.]

I could start with 'If true, this certainly finishes the germ theory of disease once and for all.' Which I think was the comment which provided me with some worrisome thoughts.

Cheers, but it is my role in life so there's no charge.

In terms of my analysis it is a big subject. A novel virus was always going to happen - it was not 'if' but 'when'.

It seems to have been an extremely well-known virus. A new strain admittedly, but aren't they all?

We were in places ill-prepared and the level of scientific knowledge in the general populace has not helped.

Hilarious. I agree with Grant, it was the level of scientific knowledge in the specialist population that has not helped.

China's initial 'crush the rebellion' and deny everything approach was always a hindrance

We'll know soon enough. Meanwhile, please don't spread these kinds of ill-informed rumours.

but no matter the source of the virus an outbreak of an airborne pathogen has been a concern among virologists for years.

Like with all the other flu-like outbreaks? Good to hear you hang out with virologists though. Someone has to, they're very dull dogs.

We are now living with a pandemic illness with a mortality rate which could be 0.5-3% depending on your gender, race, BMI, co-morbidities and initial viral load acquired.

For a coupla months anyway.

An additional complication is the prodrome phase of infectivity whilst being asymptomatic, which has lead to rapid transmission in densely populated areas.

You took the words right out of ... somebody else's mouth.

In the absence of an effective and safe vaccine the world (with the exception of a few completely locked down jurisdictions) will lurch from phase to phase of pandemic outbreaks.

Not the end of life as we know it again? I dunno how we survive sometimes.
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Chad


In: Ramsbottom
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This [15%] must represent an upper bound of the numbers who will be affected in Europe and the US. Interestingly, it's just been announced that 17% of Londoners may have been infected according to the antibody tests

Interestingly, London has reached the point where few (if any) new cases are being recorded.

The lockdown was applied to all parts of the U.K. at the same time, so if it was the lockdown that was responsible for the decline in new cases, shouldn’t we be seeing the same thing happening nationwide?

But that isn’t the case. We are still seeing about three thousand new cases a day, outside of London.

It would appear London had reached a natural saturation point... and the lockdown there was superfluous.
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