Epidemiology 2.0 – Google Flu Trends

Google is using localized search activity statistics to track flu activity across the US:

And in an interesting departure from the Web 2.0 world, they also provide a raw CSV data download for building your own spreadmarts.

Of course, people are raising privacy concerns – but who should be surprised?  Assuming Google follows it’s own policies on anonymization and aggregation this is nothing new, and nothing that hasn’t been around on Google Trends for awhile now.

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2 Responses to “Epidemiology 2.0 – Google Flu Trends”


  1. 1 Kevin 6 February 2009 at 9:04 am

    Hi Scott – I found out about Google trends on a website called Science Based Medicine – Check out the article called: Google Trends and the Interest in Alternative Medicine. The author talks about the fact that actual flu cases match the Google trend graph for searches on “flu.” The article is interesting and the website is one that I highly recommend if you have any medical questions. -Kevin

  2. 2 scott 9 February 2009 at 9:19 am

    Thanks Kev, will check that out!


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