Global pandemics aren’t new to the world, and the fact that we are experiencing one right now isn’t new to the human condition. But because pandemics aren’t common, either, many of them serve as punctuation marks between different eras. Most of us have heard the names of some of history’s larger pandemics: the Spanish Flu (1918-1920), the Third Plague (1855-1959) and the Black Death (1347-1351).
What is uniquely different about COVID-19 is the way in which we’re experiencing it. We can see and learn everything about this pandemic — its impact, its story and our collective stories around it — in real-time. This is something that could never have happened without the current state of technology in the world, powered by the cloud. From streaming news (and entertainment – especially for those sheltering in place) to data collection, analysis, and response coordination, the cloud and the underlying Internet have completely changed the way the world is experiencing the COVID-19 pandemic.