The COVID pandemic will end up changing the nature of work by accelerating the adoption of AI.

In fact, job searches in AI have risen 106% in the past year (June 2019 to June 2020) as revealed by data from job site Indeed.

Job searches around AI-related jobs have seen a 20% increase in the last 6 months alone (March 2020 to July 2020), in line with the onset of COVID-19.

As an aftermath of the global pandemic, industries all over are witnessing an accelerated adoption of AI-led technologies in order to ensure business continuity during the changed circumstances. Because of the increased number of functions being automated, creating a need for more skilled tech talent.

Covid-19 is a reminder of how interconnected humanity is globally.

How can technology create safer working conditions during the pandemic?

Technology plays a significant role in our interconnected world to elevate human security for all, across countries and cultures. In the world of the Internet of Things, we have ability to transform analog and digital feeds, reason over data and respond immediately. As the world progresses along the path of the immediate response, the recovery and rebuilding our customers today are implementing safer environments.

In this video, will learn about solutions developed by Microsoft’s partners.

Learn more:

Insight has developed a Detection & Prevention solution to improve health and safety in businesses and public spaces. Utilizing video, IoT Edge and Azure, this solution enables organizations to detect conditions indicative of contagious disease and help to assure social distancing practices are in place.

Learn more at https://aka.ms/iotshow/InsightConnectedPlatform

And if you want to dive into Ben’s guidance for IoT Edge development, check out his blog post:
https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/azure-iot-edge-development-strategies-ben-kotvis .

A colleague of mine, Ayman El-Ghazali, worked through data from the state of Maryland.

Code is available on GitHub.

I chose not source my data directly from Maryland’s State Government site because the format was not easy to use. The official Maryland Government provided data basically has each day as a column and had the rows as Zip Codes — not as easy as the data provided from the site above. So there may be few discrepancies between the data on a day to day basis, but the totals are identical. You can read about their methodologies of retrieving data from various official State Government websites and the quality of each.

In a post that I never thought I would ever write in the post Y2K world, here’s a great tutorial by Derek Banas on how to learn COBOL with a free cheat sheet.

Firstly, if it’s a start in programming that you’re looking for in our current environment, then COBOL may be a decent choice.

Why? Read on and watch.

COBOL runs the US Financial System, Social Security Administration, Department of Defense, Internal Revenue Service, the Majority of State Financial / Unemployment Systems and Numerous other Critical Systems. Currently there is a critical need to create more COBOL Programmers.

Time Index:

  • 0:00 – Intro
  • 00:25 – Why is it Important
  • 01:35 – File Format
  • 02:26 – Main Divisions
  • 02:58 – Identification Division
  • 03:20 – Environment Division
  • 03:34 – Data Division
  • 04:22 – Variables / Picture / Data
  • 05:57 – Group Item / Hierarchal
  • 07:33 – Constants
  • 07:47 – Figurative Constants
  • 07:55 – Comment
  • 08:54 – Procedure Division
  • 09:00 – Print to Screen
  • 09:25 – Accept Input
  • 09:56 – Stop Run
  • 10:13 – Compile / Run
  • 10:50 – Assign Values
  • 11:20 – Math / Compute
  • 13:42 – Variables / Datatypes
  • 15:45 – Group Item
  • 20:17 – Figurative Constants
  • 21:34 – Math Functions
  • 23:46 – Compute
  • 25:14 – Data Classification
  • 25:45 – Thru / Ranges
  • 26:40 – Boolean
  • 27:20 – Multiple Values
  • 28:52 – If / Else
  • 30:30 – Logical / Conditional Operators
  • 33:19 – Classification
  • 34:10 – Built In Classification
  • 34:55 – Toggle Values
  • 36:20 – Evaluate
  • 39:27 – Paragraphs
  • 42:57 – Subroutines / Linkage
  • 44:25 – Call
  • 45:43 – While
  • 47:08 – For / Varying
  • 48:37 – Edited Pictures
  • 52:55 – Decimal Arithmetic
  • 55:39 – String Functions
  • 57:35 – Join Strings
  • 1:02:15 – Split String
  • 1:03:17 – Define Write to File
  • 1:07:54 – Open File
  • 1:09:01 – Write to File
  • 1:09:45 – Append to File
  • 1:11:40 – Read File
  • 1:13:45 – Create Reports
  • 1:16:25 – Filler
  • 1:28:44 – Indexed Files
  • 1:31:12 – Access Data Randomly
  • 1:35:03 – Save Record
  • 1:36:40 – Delete Record
  • 1:37:45 – Update Record
  • 1:40:30 – Get Record
  • 1:44:03 – Tables
  • 1:46:00 – Multidimensional Tables
  • 1:47:46 – Index Tables
  • 1:51:33 – Search Tables
  • 1:53:05 – Prefill Tables
  • 1:54:10 – Redefine
  • 1:56:34 – String to Float
  • 1:59:38 – Sort Records
  • 2:03:55 – Merge Files
  • 2:07:38 – Install Windows
  • 2:12:13 – Install MacOS

While the world may have been thrown for a loop with the COVID-19, AI startups have a decent chance to weather the economic storm.

Here are some factoids via Forbes.

  • There are 9,216 startups and companies listed in Crunchbase today who are relying on machine learning for their main and ancillary applications, products, and services, a 6% increase from 2019’s 8,705 startups & companies.
  • Artificial Intelligence-related companies raised $16.5B in 2019, driven by 695 deals according to PwC/CB Insights MoneyTree Report, Q1 2020.
  • Artificial intelligence deals decreased in Q1, 2020, down to 148 deals from 164 in Q4, 2019, according to PwC/CB Insights MoneyTree Report, Q1 2020.