Working from home because of the Covid-19 pandemic

This is the middle of my 4th week of working from home as part of the social distancing process that most of the world has put into place because of the Covid-19 (actually called SARS-CoV-2, I think) pandemic. This is a corona virus that has been taking the world by storm the last month or so. It seems to have started in China last year, and has progressed to the point of being a world wide pandemic in the last couple of months.

This isn’t something I ever actually thought would happen in my life time, thought it was obviously always a possibility, and one that I’d considered on at least a couple of occasions over the years. Because everyone is staying home and away from people as much as possible to avoid catching the virus, and to avoid spreading it, the economy of many countries has tanked. Certainly many industries are suffering: retail, tourism, and hospitality being the obvious ones. But this thing has impacted pretty much all aspects of life from most of the world.

We’re pretty lucky so far here in Australia, as we’ve only had roughly 6,500 confirmed cases of Covid-19 so far, and 63 deaths at this point in time. It looks like we managed to isolate quick enough to avoid large scale and rapid community spread, but it will no doubt be on ongoing thing for several months at least. Some countries have been hit pretty hard. Here are some numbers:

Countries and territories Cases Deaths Recovered
United States 614,180 26,061 9,857
Spain 177,633 18,579 70,853
Italy 162,488 21,067 37,130
Germany 132,210 3,495 62,027
France 103,573 15,729 28,805
United Kingdom 93,873 12,107
China (mainland) 82,295 3,342 77,816

As you can see, Australia has been pretty lucky. New York city has been hit pretty hard. Not surprising given how many people live in such close proximity there. I believe the world wide death toll is over 100,000 at this point.

Personally, things haven’t been too bad. We switch to working from home on the 24th of March, which has gone surprisingly smoothly. It has its inconveniences, but it’s very doable and we’re lucky to be be so minimally impacted compared to those who’ve lost there jobs. In the U.S. there were something like 6.6 million people out of work in the space of a couple of weeks, or something like that.

So for now we just continue to isolate out selves and keep our distance from others while we wait for this thing to allow a return to some level of normalcy. That is likely months away, however, and I suspect that in a number of ways, both obvious and not, this modern day global pandemic is going to cause some permanent changes in the world.

Craig Reynolds @wyldphyre