The Software Behind All The Coronavirus Dashboards

The Software Behind All The Coronavirus Dashboards

Chances are, every one of us has looked at one of the coronavirus dashboards sometime in the last couple months. Images, like the one above, show the density of infection around the globe. It makes it easy to see the hot spots like Central Europe or the US, and also easy to see the lack of infection in areas like Australia or Greenland. While we all see the value in this sort of visual representation, few people realize nearly all these dashboards are powered by a 20 year old software program called ArcGIS.

ArcGISt was created by a firm called Esri in 1999. Esri’s current market value is around $1.1 Billion. The ‘GIS’ in ArcGIS stands for Global Information System and that’s basically what the software does. It aggregates statistics and maps them over an area. It’s pretty crazy to think about how much we rely on technology like this and yet few people know the name Esri.

About the Author

avatar KALE: A geek who works in the IT field and lives in Dallas, TX. He is also a music geek who has played in several local bands. Previous to his IT career, Kale worked as a photojournalist. He brings technical advice and artistic counterpoint to the podcast.