Saturday morning coffee [October 4, 2014]

“Keep true, never be ashamed of doing right, decide on what you think is right and stick to it.” ~George Eliot

So much happens each and every week that it’s hard to keep up sometimes. Here are some of the tabs that are open in my browser this morning along with some random thoughts….

The mug below comes straight from a little shop in the French Quarter in New Orleans. My wife and I were recently there for a few days while I attended a conference. We had a great time. The food, the people, the atmosphere, all good. We ate a lot of good food, include beignets and my first ever muffaletta.

MUG_NOLA2

The Equalizer was #1 at the box office last weekend. My wife and I saw it. Good movie. It’s done well enough that there is already talk of a sequel. The next few weeks should bring some good movies. My would-like-to-see movie list for October includes: The Judge, Dracula Untold, Fury, and John Wick. Of those three, John Wick seems the most interesting to me.

The Huffington Post has the right idea – 11 Reasons You Should Drink Coffee Every Day. A couple of my favorite reasons on the list include just smelling coffee could make you less stressed and coffee can make you feel happier. Seriously, don’t you love the smell of coffee in the morning? It’s enough to put a smile on my face.

I am greatly saddened to report that Saturday mornings as we know them are gone. According to GizmodoSaturday morning American broadcast TV was once animation’s home field. Filling a cereal bowl with artificially colored sugar pebbles and staring at the tube was every kid’s weekend plan. Not any more: For the first time in 50-plus years, you won’t find any animation on broadcast this morning. It’s the end of an era.” Saturday morning cartoons were an American institution. Who doesn’t remember forcing themselves to crawl out of bed to plop down in front of the TV to watch a few hours of cartoons on Saturday morning? Bummer.

Forbes: “JPMorgan said in an SEC filing Thursday afternoon that information from 76 million households — the equivalent of 65% of all U.S. households — and 7 million small businesses was compromised in the August cyber-security attack against the firm.” – Makes me want to de-digitize my life. Know what I’m sayin’?

Ebola has been in the news a lot recently, and not in a good way. Ebola is a nasty disease. The U.S. has basically been untouched by the disease until now. According to the CDC, “confirmed on September 30, 2014, through laboratory tests, the first case of Ebola to be diagnosed in the United States in a person who had traveled to Dallas, Texas from West Africa. The patient did not have symptoms when leaving West Africa, but developed symptoms approximately five days after arriving in the United States.” That’s some scary stuff.

If you’re interested in learning more about the Ebola virus I highly recommend that you use credible sources like the CDC and the WHO. There’s also a great visual guide in the September 30, 2014 online edition of The Pharmaceutical Journal. Pretty interesting stuff.

I returned my Moto 360 yesterday. Great device, but it just doesn’t play well with my phone. I got a lot of compliments, and a lot of oohs and aahs while wearing it. A couple of people were dumb enough to ask me if it was an “iWatch”. First and foremost Apple’s new device isn’t available until 2015. Secondly, for reasons that can’t be explained, Apple’s device is not called an “iWatch”, it’s simply called the “Apple Watch”. I sometimes wonder how the human race has survived this long. It’s clear to me that people grow dumber year over year.

This looks like fun. Where can I get one, and how soon?

Telehealth has been growing in popularity lately. My own experience tells me that it’s worthwhile. This week “Philips received FDA 510(k) clearance for two of its telehealth applications, eCareCoordinator and eCareCompanion. Both apps are part of a Philips program called Philips Transition to Ambulatory Care (eTrAC), which aims to reduce hospital readmissions by providing patients with the tools to make their transition to the home.” The use of telemedicine to reduce readmissions makes sense to me. (mobihealthnews)

And just to make my point, there’s a new study published in Population Health Management showing that remote monitoring of patients with congestive heart failure can reduce readmissions by 38 to 44 percent and produce a return on investment of $3.30 on the dollar. The study looked at 541 patients between 2008 and 2012. Patients used a Bluetooth-connected weight scale from AMC Health that also included interactive voice surveys about shortness of breath, swelling, appetite and prescription medication management, designed to detect acute events before they happen. Weight data and survey answers were transmitted to the patients’ care team. Pretty cool use of technology.

The face of healthcare is changing, and it’s not going to make everyone happy. Things like telemedicine and alternative clinic locations are going to become a more integral part of our care. Don’t believe me? Take a look at what big drugstore chains are doing. Chains like Rite Aid, CVS, and Walgreens have started partnering with healthcare systems to not only provide services directly to hospitals, but to provide disease education, smoking cessation programs, medication-adherence programs, and so on. Soon you’ll poke your head into a drugstore chain instead of heading off to a traditional clinic for care. While I loathe the idea of drugstore chain stores, how can you fault them for disrupting the current healthcare model? There’s an interesting article at the Managed Care website if you’re interested.

Gizmodo has a nice little list of “Essential Apps for Google Drive”. The list includes things to help you edit images, video, and audio, as well as an application to help you create diagrams or build a database. Google Drive is great, but I still don’t think it replaces Microsoft Office. I mostly use it for the cloud storage. When I want to create a document, spreadsheet, or presentation I almost always click on the Office icon.

While walking around the French Quarter in New Orleans I came across a little boutique store called the Papier Plume. The store specializes in different types of fine paper and writing instruments, including a dizzying array of fountain pens. If you would have asked me about fountain pens a year ago and I would have told you that they were silly. For reasons beyond explanation I’ve been gaining interest in fountain pens slowly, but surely over the past several months. I find them quite fascinating. I’m no enthusiast, but I can see how people can become addicted to them. It all starts with a single cheap fountain pen and ink carriage, and before you know it you’re buying more and more expensive pens and experimenting with ink converters and ink colors. According to the pen blogs that I read, this is how it starts. If you’ve never written with a fountain pen I would encourage you to give it a try. It’s an addicting experience.

If you ever have the need to create a bibliography I would encourage you to take a look at citethisforme.com. Great site and application. I’ve found it very handy this past week.

I always wondered what it would look like if some dude missed his grab when performing a “superman seat grab”. Now I know.

What a great week of football. On Monday night the Chiefs absolutely dismantled the Patriots. It brought tears of joy to my eyes. And then to top it off Arizona beat Oregon on Thursday night. I hate Oregon. With Oregon’s loss UCLA is in the driver’s seat in the Pac-12. All UCLA has to do now is win out. That’s easier said than done with Oregon, Arizona, USC and Stanford remaining on the schedule. I’m really looking forward to the rest of the Pac-12 season. It should be great.

My Cardinals are 3-0, including wins against San Diego and the 49ers. Impressive. This week they’ll be put to the test against the Denver Broncos. Current line is Denver -8. That’s a big number. Obviously no one respects the Cardinals. Should be a great game.

College games worth watching today include #3 Alabama vs. #11 Ole Miss, #15 LSU vs. #5 Auburn, #8 UCLA vs. Utah, and #14 Stanford vs. #9 Notre Dame. Great day for college football.

The NFL lineup isn’t nearly as good as the college lineup, but there are still a few games worth watching like the aforementioned Cardinals vs. Broncos, or Ravens vs Colts, or Chiefs vs 49ers. Still enough football to keep me entertained.

Have a great weekend everyone.

Posted in | | 1 Response

One response to “Saturday morning coffee [October 4, 2014]”

  1. Sonia
    December 28, 2014 at 3:13 pm |

    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has actually suggested a rule
    to modify e-cigarettes because it regulates tobacco.

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