Dr. Google is only a few keystrokes and clicks away. Someone who is sick can 'diagnose' their sickness by checking their symptoms online. Of course, this is not the recommended way to treat oneself, as a certified physician is the best way to go. However, the innovative company Google has taken the search data and found an interesting correlation with the actual spread of the flu in the United States. A spike in searches of flu symptoms and related health information occurs shortly before the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issues data on the flu. Called "Google Flu Trends," the project aims to give an early warning to "accelerate the response of doctors, hospitals, and public health officials." (NYT) The project is managed by Google's philanthropic arm, Google.org.
>>>The New York Times-Google Uses Searches to Track Flu’s Spread