R routines that manipulate and display publicly available data about the Novel Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) and COVID-19. Most of the data are derived from Our World In Data, but publicly available death data from several countries are also used.

Other illustrative programs and data are used to contextualise the coronavirus. I’ve also written a book (as yet unpublished) called Rona: the autobiography of a virus that explores the data in more depth and provides a rich social context.

Once installed (see below), from the R console say:


You can similarly look up each function. Important examples are:

Several other functions are available for exploring the context of the coronavirus. Some of these may at first glance seem irrelevant, but the book Rona ties them together in a rich social context. Topics covered include exponential growth (corona_rabbits), Bayesian decision making and the Monty Hall problem (corona_monty), the use of run charts to explore hand sanitisation and Semmelweis’ death data (corona_vienna), power laws (corona_metabolism) and how statistical distributions arise (corona_converge), with some notes on Benford’s law.


# Install the development version from GitHub