"Sim City Without the Graphics" Describes Epidemic Modeling Software That Shut Down the World EconomyOpinion
OPINION — The news out of the Imperial College London, where the original sickness model was created that convinced Trump and most of the world leaders except for Sweden to shutdown the world economy, is the model was built on faulty software.
A computer programmer looked at Dr. Neil Ferguson’s codebase that was released to the public via GitHub and declared it:
“Sim City without the graphics.”
The code is highly flawed, argued Sue Denim, a former software engineer at Google. She was a senior software engineer working on Google Maps, Gmail, and account security for around 8 years. She claims to have over 30 years experience writing software.
Her conclusion on the Ferguson code as released by Imperial:
"All papers based on this code should be retracted immediately. Imperial’s modeling efforts should be reset with a new team that isn’t under Professor Ferguson, and which has a commitment to replicable results with published code from day one.
“On a personal level, I’d go further and suggest that all academic epidemiology be defunded. This sort of work is best done by the insurance sector. Insurers employ modelers and data scientists, but also employ managers whose job is to decide whether a model is accurate enough for real world usage and professional software engineers to ensure model software is properly tested, understandable and so on. Academic efforts don’t have these people, and the results speak for themselves,” she wrote as her conclusion of her review.
Trump shutdown the economy on the recommendation and scary forecast from a computer game less sophisticated than Sim City. Sim City!
Dr. Neil Ferguson was never right about much before. He had a poor track record, according to reports. The scientist, ironically, was part of a team that advised the UK government of certain calamity during the 2001 outbreak of foot and mouth disease. His flawed model fed with poor quality data led to the unnecessary slaughter of over 6 million pigs, sheep and cows. The articles are here.
Ferguson’s modeling was also the basis of the panic about the bird flu. This is an excerpt from a September 30, 2005 article in The Guardian predicting deaths of the Spanish Flu pandemic of 1918’s proportions. Does this sound familiar?
“Last month Neil Ferguson, a professor of mathematical biology at Imperial College London, told Guardian Unlimited that up to 200 million people could be killed.
“"Around 40 million people died in 1918 Spanish flu outbreak," said Prof Ferguson. "There are six times more people on the planet now so you could scale it up to around 200 million people probably.”
“A Department of Health contingency plan states anywhere that there could be between 21,500 and 709,000 deaths in Britain,” the article states.
Didn’t anyone check this guy's track record before we started destroying our country over his model?
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