Taking a break…

I started this blog more than two years ago at the behest of my brother, Robert. He and I used to spend a lot of time talking about technology and he encouraged me to put my ideas in writing in the form of a blog. It took quite a while before I finally took his advice, but eventually I got around to it.

It’s been quite a lot of fun, but my desire to keep up this blog has finally run its course. I find little interest in pharmacy technology these days as everything has turned into rehashed content presented under the guise of something new. The technology world has become one of followers with few true leaders and I find myself becoming more and more disgusted with “revolutionary” products and ideas. There are few real thinkers left in the world.

I watched Iron Man 2 last night with my girls. At one point in the movie Tony Stark tears his house apart to build the equipment necessary to synthesize a new element. Funny I know, but that image isn’t much different than one of the founding father’s of this country. Men like Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson and the like weren’t beyond punching a hole in the floor of their home to build a clock for example.  Those men were truly revolutionary thinkers. My brother and I have discussed the loss of such minds over time, and it’s disheartening.

I told myself when this blog was no longer fun that I would stop. Well, I’ve reached that point. I find myself generating more rants than informative posts these days. In fact this post went off in the direction of a rant for just a moment. I had to reel myself back in just to finish it up. But I’m not ready to completely give up on the idea of having a blog just yet. After some thought I’ve decided to just ignore it for a while and see if my interest returns. I’m skeptical that my interest will be jump started, but I think it’s worth a shot. Most of the time when I tire of something it’s usually for good. We shall see.

For now I’m taking a break.


Is the HP Touchpad too little too late?

Daring Fireball:

To me, easily the most appealing iPad competitor. But I think the Pre is the most appealing iPhone competitor, and it hasn’t fared well. HP has matched the iPad’s pricing: $499/599 for 16/32 GB Wi-Fi models.

I think the problem facing HP is summed up in the sub-head on this promotional page:

The ultimate in entertainment with Beats Audio and Adobe Flash.

That’s not a compelling answer to “Why should I buy this instead of an iPad?” I mean, who has even heard of “Beats Audio”?

Update: Lots of feedback arguing that Dr. Dre’s Beats brand has good consumer recognition. I remain skeptical that this is a flagship selling point for a tablet, though, no matter how popular their headphones are.

And Glenn Fleishman had a good quip:

Whenever a hardware maker has to put the name of another company
in its ads as a selling point, it may already have lost.

via daringfireball.net

I don’t typically agree with anything this guy says, but I can’t ignore this post. Unfortunately he’s spot on. The HP ecosystem is incredibly well designed and for all intents and purposes is probably the best tablet/smartphone UI on the market.

While Dr. Dre’s Beats brand does in fact have a solid consumer following it won’t be enough to make the device compelling. And as I mention here, HP needs to expand their line of smartphones to compel consumers to make the transition; or at least design a device that people can’t ignore, i.e. like Apple and the iPhone.

Father’s Day gift becomes FrankenNook

I don’t consider myself a technology geek, but I do consider myself a power user. I like technology, but I’m not typically the guy who goes rooting around in the assembly of an operating system.

Recently I’ve been thinking, out loud, about getting an Android tablet. I’ve also been bemoaning the fact that I’ve never rooted an Android device. I’ve thought about rooting my Droid, but haven’t done it. I’ve also toyed with the idea of purchasing a Barnes & Noble Nook Color just so I could root it.

Continue reading Father’s Day gift becomes FrankenNook

The weakest link in building a safer medication use model

I’ve just spent four days at the ASHP Summer Meeting in Denver, CO. The meeting offered a nice variety of topics, but seemed to focus on medication safety and informatics more this year than in the past. In fact, this is the first year that ASHP has offered a medication safety tract at one of their meetings.

I avoided the more traditional sessions on therapeutics, choosing instead to focus on the informatics and medication safety sessions. Based on the information presented it was obvious to me that these two disciplines are intimately linked. After all, the idea behind much of the technology we use in healthcare today is to improve patient safety.
Continue reading The weakest link in building a safer medication use model

Physician mobile choice driving IT development

imageamednews.com: “With an estimated 81% of physicians using smartphones (up from 72% in 2010), according to a survey of 2,041 physicians released May 4 by Manhattan Research, Albany Medical Center was not alone in feeling pressure from physicians to allow them mobile access. Hospitals and health information technology vendors are realizing that the way to sell physicians on health information technology is to make it mobile. Instead of hospitals and vendors telling physicians to adapt to their preferred ways of using technology, physicians are gaining the power to sway hospitals and vendors to their preferred way of using it.”

There are a couple of take home messages from this article. First, the increased use of mobile technology is finally forcing healthcare systems to make changes to their approach to technology. It’s something that’s been needed for a long time. Second, the article clearly demonstrates that our healthcare system remains physician centric. It isn’t until physicians cry foul that changes are made. I first asked for “mobile support” in a hospital setting nearly a decade ago, and continued to ask for it until I left the industry about six months ago. Unfortunately I’m a lowly pharmacist. Even at the last facility I worked in, which considered themselves quite technologically advanced, it wasn’t until physicians began demanding iPad support that we got it.

The more things change, the more they stay the same. Just sayin’.

Conclusion of the ASHP Summer Meeting 2011 (#ashpsm)

I attended one final session at the Summer Meeting today before heading back to the hotel to pack up my stuff, have some lunch and head for the airport; which is where I’m sitting now.

The session was titled Mobile Devices and Social Media: Enabling Your Professional and Personal Lives, and was delivered by Bill Felkey and Brent Fox. It was great. I thought I was pretty technology savvy, but I quickly found out that I still have a lot to learn. As with many sessions at this year’s Summer Meeting, this one was recorded and should be available at http://ce.ashp.org shortly. Do yourself a favor and go watch the audio-synched presentation. You won’t regret it.

Continue reading Conclusion of the ASHP Summer Meeting 2011 (#ashpsm)

An open letter to HP

Dear HP,

As I read about the release of the HP TouchPad on July 1st, I can’t help feel both excited and disappointed. The operating system on the new TouchPad appears second to none. The “card-view” multi-tasking offers a simple, yet powerful user interface. In fact, the user interface is so nice that RIM blatantly copied it for use on their PlayBook.

In addition the TouchPad offers a dual-core Snapdragon processor, HP Synergy to provide a single interface for email, social media, calendars, contacts and more, just type, support for both Flash and HTML5, video calling on a beautiful 1024×768 multitouch screen, and so on. You’ve designed a tablet truly worthy of consideration even when compared to all other tablets currently on the market. 

Continue reading An open letter to HP

The ASHP Summer Meeting 2011 continues … (#ashpsm)

ASHP 2011 Summer Meeting and Exhibition

I had planned on blogging daily during the Summer Meeting, but obviously that didn’t happen. Perhaps it was the big dinner I had yesterday evening followed by the insanely good gelato that put me into a food comma, or then again maybe it was just laziness. Regardless, I skipped a day.

The Summer Meeting continues to roll on with some great sessions and lots of interesting conversation. All-in-all between yesterday and today I’ve attended the following:

Continue reading The ASHP Summer Meeting 2011 continues … (#ashpsm)

And so it begins, the ASHP Summer Meeting 2011 (#ashpsm)

As you read this the ASHP Summer Meeting is taking place in Denver, Colorado. While the ceremonial start isn’t until after the Opening Session and Keynote tomorrow (Monday, June 13) things have been in full swing since Saturday.

Continue reading And so it begins, the ASHP Summer Meeting 2011 (#ashpsm)

Smart Pump integration with EHR and auto-programming [Video]

The integration of smart pumps with an EHRs, and the use of auto-programming isn’t common place in healthcare, but it should be. I’ve only come across a couple of facilities that have done it “successfully”. In addition I’ve heard a couple of presentations on the subject matter; one at ASHP a couple of years ago and one at the unSUMMIT last year.

The video below talks about the integration of smart pumps with Cerner at WellSpan Health in New Jersey. Interesting stuff.