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Studying epidemics in virtual worlds

Business Week, May 12, 2009
After news reports about an outbreak of swine flu in Mexico, health officials in Allegheny County, PA, tested 15 different courses of action in a virtual model of the country. A team at the University of Pittsburgh had built a virtual world, similar to Second Life or SimCity, with the county's 1.3 million residents represented by digital characters. It ran through 15 scenarios, with a variety of government reactions.