Google Search Records Can Track the Spread of MRSA
Google tracks more than just your cellphone location, it can track the spread of MRSA, and it's actually very interesting as to how it's done.
Check out the image to the right, that has a representation of Google Searches and the infected MRSA people in hospitals, if you look at the trend in red, you can see that as the trend goes up and down, the searches for Google also go up and down. This is because the people infected by the MRSA - methicillin resistant staphylococcus aureus, always resort to online searches to figure out how to cure something... How many times have you found a small wound in your body and instantly go to WebMD? it's actually a very common practice, only to figure out that even a small mosquito bite comes back as skin cancer.
Currently there is no Surveillance mechanism for the tracking of MRSA so this is actually very cool to have, hospitals and scientist have no way of figuring out how the infection rate of MRSA is changing over time, but thanks to Google we can now see the trend. I wouldn't recommend basing anything like this on Google searches alone - specially because if you look in between 2007 and 2008 there was a huge spike, if I was a doctor and saw that spike I'd think it's an epidemic, when in reality it was just 5 thousand people trying to figure out why they have a minor bump on their skin on WebMD and it came back as "you have MRSA"
This Google Search timeline has actually been on the news before, is similar to that used by Google Flu Trends, when it caught researchers’ attention after flu symptom-related searches in Mexico preceded the 2009 swine flu outbreak.Continued on the next page