Notations From the Grid (Special Edition): On #LifeIntheAgeofCorona ((Updates))

The Daily Outsider
3 min readMar 17, 2020


The War on Corona is continuing worldwide. Our Hometown, Laguna Niguel, declared a local emergency yesterday and activated the local Emergency Operations Center. Six Counties in Northern California declared a shelter-in-place order. Our team has joined the local Second Harvest Food Bank on the Status of their efforts to be operational to support all Food Pantries throughout Orange County as Orange County ordered a shelter in Place Order & as this occurred:

U.S. stocks soared Tuesday as top government officials and legislators sought a $1 trillion stimulus package to counter the economic effects of the coronavirus, rebounding after the second-worst day for equities in history.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin met with Republican senators Tuesday to discuss a trillion-dollar package that would include sending checks directly to households.

Here is a sampling of the updates on developments around the World courtesy the team at The Financial Times and Resources For the Future:

What is critical, also, is to start thinking about lessons learnt. We commend the team led by Peter Diamandis in pulling these lessons from China as it has begun to “Flatten the Curve”:

(1) Fill the Skies With Drones

On February 7, China’s Ministry of Education shared instructions on the deployment of online teaching for students to resume classes from the safety of their homes, providing 24,000 online courses from more than 20 online platforms for FREE.

Meanwhile, this spring semester, 3,923 courses at Tsinghua University (China’s top STEM university) and 4,437 courses at Peking University (China’s top liberal arts college equivalent) will be taught through MOOCs, recorded courses, live streaming, and teleconferencing.

On a recent earnings call, Alibaba CEO Daniel Zhang told investors that, while a tremendous challenge for society, Coronavirus also gives people a “chance to try a new way of living and new way of work.”

Released by TikTok’s parent company ByteDance, corporate messaging app Feishu (which offers file-sharing and document-editing capabilities) has now released a “health management” platform, allowing workers to log location and daily temperature.

Enter next-gen e-commerce and unmanned retail.

But post-outbreak in China, buying groceries online has also become the norm. China’s Sinopec petrol stations now sell no-contact groceries: buy online, and have groceries put directly into the trunk of your car. No need to leave the driver’s seat or even open the window.

While we have yet to see how 21st century smart cities serve as community defense mechanisms, their help in protecting against outbreak in China should spur capital investment and innovation across our own smart cities worldwide. (Already, the Chinese government predicts public and private investment of 500 billion RMB (US$74 billion) in the nation’s smart cities.)


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