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On the Wisdom of the Crowd

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A Belated Edison’s Birthday Marks National Inventors’ Day

[By Staff Reporters]

Steve Wozniak, who built the first Apple computer, has this advice for inventors: “You are going to be best able to design revolutionary products if you are working on your own,” he writes in his memoir iWoz. “Not on a committee. Not on a team.”

GE engineer Peter de Bock begs to differ. “Innovation is about talking to people, connecting with people,” de Bock says. “It’s about knowing what’s out there, what’s needed.”

Recently, De Bock applied his method to build an ingenious cooling device that could launch a new generation of thinner, quieter, and more powerful laptops and tablets like Apple’s iPad.

***

crowds

LINK

http://www.gereports.com/post/74545117561/the-wisdom-of-the-crowd-edisons-birthday-marks

***

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Forget FITBIT – Meet FEARBIT

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New Sweat Sensors Will Sniff Out Fatigue, Stress and Even Fear

[By staff reporters]

Wearables TNTC ?

Bits

***

Sweat can be a smelly messenger, but one that also carries a trove of valuable information about how our bodies are feeling.

Scientists at several labs are now trying to pick its lock with nano-technology, including know-how transferred from GE’s jet engine research, to develop flexible, Band-Aid-like wireless sensors sensitive enough to detect a drop of biomolecules found in sweat in 2.5 million gallons of water.

***

Polygraph_Test_-_Limestone_Technologies_Inc

Meet the Fearbit: New Sweat Sensors Will Sniff Out Fatigue, Stress and Even Fear

***

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Arnold Spielberg and the Birth of Personal Computing

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It’s BASIC*

[By staff reporters]

From Thomas Edison to former President Ronald Reagan and novelist Kurt Vonnegut, GE has employed a number of luminaries over the course of its 123-year history.

But, one famous last name that’s been missing from this list is Spielberg.

***

Insurance Company Tower

***

Enter Arnold Spielberg

In the late 1950s, Arnold Spielberg, the father of Hollywood director Steven Spielberg, helped revolutionize computing when he designed the GE-225 mainframe computer. The machine allowed a team of Dartmouth University students and researchers to develop the BASIC programing language, an easy-to-use coding tool that quickly spread and ushered in the era of personal computers.

(Young Bill Gates, Paul Allen, Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs all used the language when they started building their digital empires.)

LINK: http://www.gereports.com/post/117791167040/its-basic-arnold-spielberg-and-the-birth-of

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More on BASIC*

BASIC (an acronym for Beginner’s All-purpose Symbolic Instruction Code) is a family of general-purpose, high-level programming languages whose design philosophy emphasizes ease of use.

In 1964, John G. Kemeny and Thomas E. Kurtz designed the original BASIC language at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire. They wanted to enable students in fields other than science and mathematics to use computers. At the time, nearly all use of computers required writing custom software, which was something only scientists and mathematicians tended to learn.

Versions of BASIC became widespread on microcomputers in the mid-1970s and 1980s. Microcomputers usually shipped with BASIC, often in the machine’s firmware. Having an easy-to-learn language on these early personal computers allowed small business owners, professionals, hobbyists, and consultants to develop custom software on computers they could afford.

BASIC remains popular in many dialects and in new languages influenced by BASIC, such as Microsoft’s Visual Basic. In 2006, 59% of developers for the .NET Framework used Visual Basic .NET as their only programming language.

Conclusion

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The RAND Corporation’s Health IT Legacy‏

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Understanding ObamaCare and HIT Data Breaches

[By Darrell K. Pruitt DDS]

1-darrellpruittTwo current topics in the HIT industry: (1) A dishonest 2005 RAND study set up lawmakers for disappointment in electronic health records, which are essential to Obamacare, and (2) I told you so.

The Reports

Just the other day, there were reports of two data breaches of EHRs involving over 734,000 patients in Texas and California.

http://www.ihealthbeat.org/articles/2013/10/23/health-facilities-in-california-texas-report-health-data-breaches

For reasons like this, the wisdom of an ambitious mandate for paperless healthcare by 2014 is beginning to be questioned by the same lawmakers who were sucked in years ago by RAND’s tainted 2005 study.

According to the vendor-friendly results gleaned from vendor-friendly data supplied by vendors, EHRs should have started saving 100,000 lives and $77 billion a year, years ago. Predictably, that has not happened. Far from it!

The Findings 

The happy findings – discredited even by RAND in January of this year – were paid for by Cerner and GE, who profited immensely from their RAND investment. Since nationwide adoption of EHRs became a bi-partisan goal with bubbly beginnings and millions of campaign dollars, the costs and danger of healthcare IT didn’t appear to bother conservatives until three months after RAND admitted the study was garbage.

In April, six GOP senators, led by Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), released a detailed report criticizing HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius’ execution of a $35 billion initiative to promote EHRs as part of the ARRA stimulus package. (See: “GOP senators raise concerns with push for electronic medical records,” by Sam Baker, April 16, 2013, The Hill).

http://thehill.com/blogs/healthwatch/medicare/294273-gop-senators-raise-concerns-with-push-for-electronic-medical-records

Wither ARRA?

Have you ever wondered why ARRA was passed as a jobs bill rather than as part of healthcare reform? Any ideas?

More recently, with the conservatives’ failure to stop Obamacare even by shutting down government, EHRs have become recognized as the ACA’s next best weakness. Yesterday, Greg Scandlen, writing for RightSideNews.com, posted “The Tyranny of Electronic Systems.” It goes downhill from there.

http://www.rightsidenews.com/2013102333379/life-and-science/health-and-education/the-tyranny-of-electronic-systems.html

Even More

Also yesterday, Michelle Mailkin writing for Townhall.com, an ultra-conservative website similar to RightSideNews, posted, “Don’t Forget Obamacare’s Electronic Medical Records Wreck.

http://townhall.com/columnists/michellemalkin/2013/10/23/dont-forget-obamacares-electronic-medical-records-wreck-n1730172?utm_source=TopBreakingNewsCarousel&utm_medium=story&utm_campaign=BreakingNewsCarousel

Assessment 

Conservatives found traction: Without the anticipated healthcare savings from EHRs, Obamacare will not survive. These times are not as happy for EHR stake-holders as RAND led them to expect.

Conclusion

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HealthyMagination and Direct to Consumer [D2C] eMRs?

About HealthyMagination.com from GE

By Staff Reporters

Just imagine … the broadcast TV or radio commercial fades in, as the announcer says:

“Almost everyone wants to make healthier choices, but they don’t always know how. The amount of information available on wellness, nutrition and exercise is overwhelming, to say the least. Even when we do know how to improve our health, we often try to make sweeping changes or set goals that seem too daunting to reach.”

What it is

Healthymagination, from General Electric, is a consumer directed internet site, with new D2C TV commercial about becoming healthier, through the sharing of imaginative ideas and proven solutions. It goes beyond innovations in the fields of technology and medicine, celebrating the people behind these advancements.

Seeking to build stronger relationships between patients and doctors, GE created healthymagination to gather, share and discuss healthy ideas and illustrative stories.

Story link: http://www.healthymagination.com/stories/

Participatory Projects for Patients

Because healthymagination is about becoming healthier together, it takes the form of multiple projects that patients can participate in, whether they are looking to change a lifestyle or fine-tune an approach to health.

According to GE, making healthy decisions should be easy … and fun.

Link: http://www.healthymagination.com/projects/

Info and Video for Doctors

There is also a portal for medical professionals, promoting GE eMRs, of course.

Link: http://www.ge.com/innovation/emr/index.html

Due Diligence RFP

And, good preliminary questions for all physicians to ask any eMR vendor are:

  • What is the cost per physician license?
  • Do you have any existing clients in our specialty?
  • Does your system come pre-loaded with templates for my specialty?
  • Is your company the developers of the software or is it re-branded from another vendor?
  • Is your system client/server based or ASP based?
  • Does your system include practice management software?
  • How many clients does your company have?
  • Is your system HL7 compliant?
  • How long has your company been in business?
  • Is your development done overseas?
  • Is support done overseas?
  • Is your software CCHIT certified? If not, why?
  • How often is the software updated?

Assessment

Let us hope that the health 2.0 participatory patient of the future doesn’t select a physician based on the proprietary eMRs s/he uses, as seen on a television commercial, much like the D2C [direct-to-consumer] pharmaceutical industry of today.

IOW: Will that be Allscripts, Cerner or GE, etc? Or, listen to narrator and actor Morgan Freeman intone on a TV spot: “Ask your doctor if XYZ electronic medical records are right for you.” 

Conclusion

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ADA Opens a Facebook

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Perhaps too Early?

[By Darrell K. Pruitt; DDS]pruitt

Something strange has happened to www.DentalBlogs.com I think they have partially shut down their Facebook account. They no longer feature original articles such as those by Dr. Rhonda Savage and Ms. Linda Miles, and in the last couple of weeks, they eliminated their collection of photos. Now the site only features ads and press releases. Does anyone else wonder what happened? Sure you do! This is exciting.

Perhaps Re-Tooling 

Unless they are just re-tooling this weekend, I suspect that since their previous format was biased heavily in favor of advertising dollars in a tough economy, their funding simply dried up. Like so many other advertising-related careers, the dinosaur found it couldn’t compete in a 2.0 market.  Nevertheless, today I did learn something important from the DentalBlogs Wall: The ADA has opened a Facebook account.

http://www.facebook.com/home.php#/pages/American-Dental-Association/32252997166?ref=mf

Such transparency is inspirational

When I announced this news on Twitter a few hours ago (“Proots”), neither the ADA nor the TDA had yet told membership. Yea, I scooped them on their in-house news. It happens all the time.  Naturally, I became a fan of the ADA Facebook. When I joined, there were already 1205 fans, even though the site is yet operational. I found that intriguing because it usually takes a long time for most FBs to attain 1200 fans – especially when all one can gather is the mission statement of the ADA’s newest Internet site.

My View 

Here’s what I see: About the time DentalBlogs laid off employees from their fully active Facebook, the ADA opened theirs (Gasp)! The ADA was well known to DentalBlogs because the ADA once advertised with them regularly. That is where I found an article about the ADA-approved CareCredit/GE that ended up causing problems for some people and entertainment for others. Let’s face it, friends. I just know that I’m not the only dentist in the nation with at least two burning questions. I bet at least 4 others are wondering who were the first seven fans to sign up for the ADA Facebook and Has Kim Volk, CEO of DDPA signed up yet?

Because the number of fans is rapidly piling up, such information from a few weeks (?) ago could soon be just too difficult to uncover from the fans list on the ADA site. It took a long time for me to scroll down through 1200 names – looking for those I recognize (Gasp)!

Scrolling Quickly, but Carelessly

I could have easily missed several easily recognizable names in contemporary dentistry, but as far as I can tell, not only was Delta Dental Plans Association CEO Kim E. Volk’s name not present in the list of 1200 fans, but there were very few names I recognized … and I’m sorry if I insulted anyone. I also did not see “Ron Tankersley” and other ADA officials’ names on the fans list. Didn’t the ADA try partial transparency like this once before? I may be wrong, but I think I played a role in shutting it down a few years ago with my persistent and still unanswered questions about the NPI number.

More Semi-Reliable Information

Here’s another bolus of semi-reliable information: I also quickly scrolled through DentalBlog’s list of 400 fans and did not notice an unusual amount of matches with the ADA Facebook fans list.

Those who dare to do so, might just ask, “So if the ADA fans didn’t come from dentalblogs, where did they come from?” I think one possibility is that the ADA effort has been in Beta and limited to a select group of people up until now. Doesn’t it seem strange that nobody is able to post anything? Did someone open the doors a few hours early? So who were the first 7 fans? No, you don’t have to scroll down to find out for yourself. I’ll tell you.

Who is John Hergert?

The first person to become a fan of the ADA Facebook account is named John Hergert from Chicago, Illinois.

2nd – Laurie Rich

3rd – Amy Lund

4th – Kelsey Majors

5th – Jessica Stevens

6th – Samantha Campbell

7th – Lina Kulkormi

I don’t recognize any of the seven, and I have not searched anyone’s name other than John Hergert’s – the first person to become a fan of the ADA Facebook. I found someone named John Hergert in Chicago, Illinois who is Associate Vice President at Lipman Hearne Inc. – an advertising agency.

http://www.spoke.com/info/p6JVgPy/JohnHERGERT.

Here is the bio of the person I only suspect is the first to become a fan of the ADA Facebook.

John Hergert’s Biography

John Hergert Associate Vice President John Hergert has a keen understanding of what it takes to capture and hold the attention of marketing audiences via innovative marketing techniques. Formerly Associate Director of Marketing Communications at DePaul University in Chicago, John works with both traditional and interactive media to design and implement marketing strategies that build a client’s image, increase support, and grow enrollment or attendance. John’s experience includes developing ROI-based marketing strategies for a variety of nonprofit and for-profit clients. Prior to DePaul, John was an account executive overseeing marketing and advertising strategy, web development, direct mail, print production, and promotional development for clients including Disney, Marconi, Owens Corning, and Reynolds. John began his marketing career while at the University of Wisconsin, where he was hired by a Los Angeles firm to implement cutting-edge marketing programs for Saturn and Trek Bicycle Corporation. John received his B.A. in Journalism from the University of Wisconsin and his Master of Science in Information Systems from DePaul University.”

Assessment 

What do you want to bet that the ADA Facebook is Mr. Hergert’s baby?

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On Financial Sector Failings

Understanding the Debacle

[By Staff Reporters]56371606

Did you know that Michael Lewis and David Einhorn recently gave a nice review of the financial system catastrophe, and its devastating flaws, causes and effects, in the January 3rd 2009 New York Times?

Exposing the Flaws

In review of How to Repair a Broken Financial World, they said:

1. Wall Street CEOs won’t self-incriminate or blow the whistle on their own companies [Think: thin-blue line]. And, they receive bonuses and are on peer-compensation committees. Perhaps they might even be fired if they self-accuse of irresponsibility.

2. The credit-rating agencies, which are supposed to carefully measure the amount of risk that companies take, dropped the ball.

For example Fannie, Freddie, GE and AIG all had triple-A ratings; remember Enron? But, they disguised the risk, rather than expose it. Why? Because they would have to re-rate tens of thousands of credits tied to them, as well as increase their own cost-of-capital; integrity and reputations be damned! And, did the big financial firms contribute to those very same credit-rating agencies [pay-2-play]?

3. Was Chris Cox and the Securities and Exchange Commission [SEC] competent enough, or motivated enough, to do its job and investigate the Madoff scheme even after being warned about it?

Assessment

Can you cite some other, even more pernicious, flaws? For example; how did the mortgage industry’s engorgement of commission-driven sales, and the consumer sentiment to “own a home – at all costs” factor into the fault-line?   

Link: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/04/opinion/04lewiseinhornb.html?_r=1

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