The Coronavirus and Covid-19
I guess The Coronavirus and Covid-19 do not need an introduction anymore. The virus and the illness it brings are literally the enemies at the gates right now.
We need to muster all resources to defeat this enemy and return to our normal lives. But normal should mean better lives for us all. A life where our systems work for all of us and not just to enrich the happy few. What that leads to is very clear, and it saddens me to see that happen. Now many hope this will happen after we have dealt with all this, but I am not that optimistic. I see some of our so-called top politicians slinging mud like the perfect narcissistic egos they are instead of focusing on the mission. Sad people, but if they act like this now, it holds little promise for the post-Corona crisis era.
The good news is that scientists, medical professionals, and the first line responders, as well as distribution, utility and sanitary services, are holding the line. Not only do they show more statesmanship than some politicians, but they also come into work and get at it. Many of them in low paying so-called essential or much needed but unimportant and undervalued jobs. But right now the focus is on fighting the Coronavirus and Covid-19. At least it is with all people who have common sense.
So what needs to be done?
Listen to the experts. Do your part. Act locally, think globally. I see people helping each other, self-isolating, practicing social distancing, taking care of the children and elderly while telecommuting from home. A friend of mine is working on protein folding and trying to predict the future mutations in order to see how that affects antibodies already found. Doctors and nurses taking care of my elderly mother keep coming to the house when needed. Despite the fact they had to remove their medical marking from their car to prevent theft of their medical masks and gloves. But the good so far is way more prevalent than the bad.
What do I do?
Personally, I heed all warnings and follow the advice of the quiet professionals in our medical and scientific community. I do not know any better just because I’m an IT architect who accidentally once in his life graduated as a Master in Biology (Zoology, Biochemistry, and Physiology) and did a sting as a research assistant. You might be smart and good, but this is not our area of expertise. And given the issue at hand, you should listen to those that master this field right now. That’s the WHO, the medical and the scientific community.
I am the caretaker of my elderly mother. It’s evident that I keep doing that. That means I self isolate strictly and work from home 100% to minimize risks to her and my loved ones.
I have increased monitoring and alertness for any kind of IT or security problem. My colleagues are doing that as well and handling the calls from many people less knowledgeable in IT matters that are struggling a bit to work from home. We are used to telecommuting and our operations have not missed a beat. We can deploy extra resources and having everything built redundantly gives a bit more peace of mind nowadays. The least we can do is not to make matters worse. We are at work spread out over the day so we have each other’s back and can help out. If all is going well we just keep working on other projects or tasks.
What did we lose?
Material stuff and experience. Conferences and travels got canceled. Money got lost. Spirits got a punch in the nose (for me missing the MVP Summit and quite possibly my vacation). However, that also means businesses and jobs in danger or already lost. But in comparison to the sick and deceased, nothing that we can’t cope with or fix. If you have your health and can work. Be happy about that and carry on.
A small helping hand
I also started helping my protein folding friends out with Folding@Home. We stand together alone in our houses and places of work. But while in social isolation we collaborate on many fronts. Do your part where you can, but please leave the cloud resources alone. They are short in supply as we speak. For us, this is a time where our CAPEX model proves to be cheaper and more resilient than our OPEX model (yes we have both).
Last but not least I put a bear in front of our window for the kids who take a walk to spot and get happy about.
Do your part. No matter how small it might seem. Your kindness, your extra effort, that one extra thing you do might make the difference for someone or for many. Remember, no matter how bad it looks or how depressed you feel, you can always quit later. Just not now, keep going. Together we can beat the Coronavirus and Covid-19.