They did the math: this is how you survive a zombie outbreak

When Zombies Attack!: Mathematical Modelling of an Outbreak of a Zombie Infection” is a paper published in the journal Infectious Disease Modelling Research Progress by mathematicians from University of Ottawa and Carleton University.

The paper sets up mathematical models for the outbreak of Romero-style zombies (lumbering, flesh-eating, undead) and discusses how best to deal with an epidemic of infectious zombies. Here’s an excerpt from the paper:

The key difference between the models presented here and other models of infectious disease is that the dead can come back to life. Clearly, this is an unlikely scenario if taken literally, but possible real-life applications may include allegiance to political parties or, diseases with a dormant infection.

This is, perhaps unsurprisingly, the first mathematical analysis of an outbreak of zombie infection. While the scenarios considered are obviously not realistic, it is nevertheless instructive to develop mathematical models for an unusual outbreak.

The conclusion of the paper is that a zombie outbreak is likely to destroy civilization unless swift and decisive action is taken to violently eradicate the zombie threat. An epidemic could be contained with an aggressive implementation of quarantines, and if a cure were to be developed that would be another possible solution, but it would be unpractical.

Aim for the head. No mercy.

Via io9.

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