In order to accurately predict the spread of Covid-19 infections or other Covid-like virus in the future, researchers have created a virus that transfers from one smartphone to another via Bluetooth to mimic the spread of the Covid-19 infection. The technology is called ‘Safe Blues and claims to offer an accurate tracking of Covid-19. Note that this “virtual virus” is harmless and doesn’t affect the way your smartphone works.
As per the Cell Press Patterns Paper, “Safe Blues uses Bluetooth signals to transmit tokens between mobile devices that mimic virus spread in a real-time privacy-preserving manner.”
The technology is said to be similar to contact-tracing frameworks such as Proximity, Blue Trace and the Privacy-Preserving Contact Tracing framework developed by Apple and Google. The creators of this technology claim that it does not record and store information about individuals and their interactions with the intention of mapping specific contacts.
“Instead, various Safe Blues virus strands are periodically created and their spread through the (mobile device) population is tracked. Aggregated counts for each strand are reported to a server without recording private information,” it explained.
This technology can accurately predict if steps like social distancing are being implemented or followed. “The effects of other mass contact events, such as public demonstrations and large gatherings, are also automatically measured,” it said.
For getting the exact picture of how the infection can spread in future, “real time counts of multiple forms of the tokens are combined with delayed measurements of the actual epidemic.” Then using machine-learning techniques, the technology creates more accurate projections about the current and near-future state of the epidemic to provide helpful information to government officials.