Monday, February 3, 2020

World Celebrates Palindrome Day on 02/02/2020

It’s the date the world has been waiting for, for more than 900 years.

Yesterday was 02/02/2020 – and this is the first “global” palindrome since 11/11/1111.

Unlike other palindromic dates, such as 10/02/2001, 02 February, 2020 is considered a global palindrome because it is exactly the same written both in the DD/MM/YYYY format as well as the US standard of MM/DD/YYYY.

And for nations like China, where the year comes first, 2020/02/02 also works.

According to, total infections have risen to 17,393 and deaths total 362. 

China’s death toll from 2019-nCoV stands at 361 – all from hardest-hit Hubei province except one from the southwestern megalopolis of Chongqing (a provincial-level municipality under the direct administration of the central government, the fourth one after Beijing, Shanghai, and Tianjin). 

The other fatality was a 44-year-old man in the Philippines who died on Saturday after developing what officials called “severe pneumonia”. Philippine health officials said the man had arrived in the country on January 21 with a 38-year-old woman. She remains under observation. 

A modelling study by Gabriel Leung and fellow team members at the University of Hong Kong published in The Lancet Friday had estimated that there could have been as many as 75,815 people infected by 2019-nCoV as of January 25 and that the outbreak may only peak between late April and early May. 

But they already got it wrong on the first count! 

Still, the explanation given for the apparent discrepancy to the official numbers reported as being due to a time lag between infection and symptom onset, delays in infected persons getting medical treatment, and the time needed to confirm cases with lab tests “could all affect overall recording and reporting”. Wrong is wrong lah!

Truth be told, it is difficult to predict – and we will just have to wait and see. 

The other point to note is that as at January 29, in spite of the 6,078 total cases globally of the novel Wuhan coronavirus and the 132 deaths – 110 people have also recovered. 

So, it’s not all doom and gloom.

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