“What’d I miss?” – Week of December 20th

As usual there were a lot of things that happened during the week, and not all of it was pharmacy or technology related. Here’s a quick look at some of the stuff I found interesting.

Avatar was #1 at the box office last weekend. My family and I saw it on Saturday night (12/19) and it was great. If you plan on seeing it, make sure you do it on the big screen.

– John Poikonen posted a quick blog about PharmaSURVEYOR, which is an online drug side effect analyzer. It’s an interesting concept, but as John warns “It is a bit alarmist in nature, so I would be worried about over interpretation of the results.” For example, I entered Prilosec OTC and Tylenol and it gave me a life threatening risk of agranulocytosis. While theoretically possible, I suppose, I certainly wouldn’t lose any sleep over it.

HIT Consultant: “Ontario’s privacy commissioner has launched an investigation after a USB drive containing the personal health information of more than 80,000 people, who went to flu clinics in Durham Region — just north of Toronto — went missing.” – Ooops! This is why you don’t store confidential information on any type of “local” device; another good reason why cloud storage is appealing. I realize people worry about cloud breaches, but at least the cloud won’t fall out of your pocket.

KLAS has listed their best in software awards. The best software for pharmacy was identified as Epic Willow. Bummer, we don’t use Epic.

– I’m a big fan of RFID technology, which made this post at Engadget very interesting. Check out the “Rfiddler” gun that disables RFID tags. Looks like fun.

UMPC Portal: “There are huge physical and software issues for tablet PC designers to overcome and through our experience with UMPCs over the last 3 years it’s easy to see that the Archos 9 doesn’t really solve them. The problem for the Archos 9 however is that it neither hits the mark as a consumer tablet or as a niche ultra-mobile productivity device for UMPC fans. It’s too heavy and too slow, doesn’t shine as a media player due to lack of storage, software and online media support. It doesn’t shine as a productivity device due to the lack of keyboard and doesn’t shine as a mobility device due to weight and lack of 3G.” – This is an unfortunate development as I was very excited about the Archos 9 tablet. It was on my list of must-haves until I read the review. Hey look at the bright side that means I still have an open slot on my must-haves list.

– Based on the review of the Archos 9 tablet my next best hope may be the JooJoo. Engadget has photos and a video of the JooJoo. It’s a great concept, I only hope the application is as good.

ComputerWorld: “Mike Elgan: Hello, tablets. Good-bye, netbooks! Seven trends are conspiring to usher in a tsunami of tablets — and sink netbooks.” – While I like what Mike has to say about tablet PCs, I don’t see netbooks dying out any time soon. We just purchased a netbook for my youngest daughter and I love it. Err, I mean she loves it. They’re light, equipped to handle internet surfing and inexpensive. You can even get the best of both worlds with the Eee PC T91. Don’t count netbooks out just yet.

FierceMobileHealthcare: “Yes, PHR usage is minimal; approximately 3 percent of Americans actually use one, according to Forrester Research. But that hasn’t discouraged numerous companies from developing PHRs, particularly for mobile phones. The smart ones are targeting their products to patients with chronic conditions.” – The healthcare industry wants people to start using PHRs for various reasons, but healthcare has to develop a standardized EHR first. The development of PHRs is much more likely if you were to walk into your physicians office and handed a link, user name and password to your medical records. PHRs should be like a blood pressure cuff; there are many models, but they all basically work the same.

GottaBeMobile.com: “For touch users, I’d like to see Microsoft’s left hand quit foiling what its right hand wants to do by either getting rid of Windows 7 Starter Edition, or include the Touch and Pen bits relegated to Starter Edition.” – Amen. I never understood why you would build something so robust and then cripple it.

FT.com/techblog: “Apple is expected to use the venue to make a major product announcement on Tuesday, January 26th. Both YBCA and Apple declined to comment. Speculation that Apple is preparing to introduce a new tablet style computer has been building all year, and other reports now suggest the tablet will make its debut in January.” – I never thought I’d say this, but I’m getting a little sick and tired of Apple. They’re playing dirty little games that are quite frankly, beneath them. They leak rumors about their tablet all year long, wait until everyone has purchased their Apple Christmas gifts, and then announce their tablet; not very nice. I think I’m going to re-dedicate myself to other platforms. With Android finally taking shape that is a real possibility.

– Check out the concept tablet designs at Yanko Design. Would someone just make these things already!

The Palmdoc Chronicles: “Imagine if Palm had a WebOS tablet, this would mean that WebOS would be available to anyone who already has a phone and wanted to try out the new platform. They can keep their carrier and current plan. They can download apps from the Palm App Catalog as well as run their existing PalmOS Apps in Classic.” – Palmdoc hits the nail on the head with this post. I’ve wanted this for years; not the necessarily the WebOS of course, but the Palm OS in general. WebOS offers many of the features that are appealing to fans of Android tablets. Too bad it will probably never happen. Anyone interested in building one with me? It must be possible.

– I’ve mentioned this before, but the Microsoft Surface blog has an updated video showing gameplay with D&D on Surface. Incredible, simply incredible.

The top ten searchphrases that brought people to my site this week:

1. meditech 6.0 emr
2. jerry fahrni
3. new lcd technology
4. lexi comp droid
5. jaansun capsule machine
6. lexicomp droid
7. micromedex for droid
8. cloud computing in pharmacy
9. free pharmacy apps for ipod touch
10. medboard medication tracking
[tied with] lexi droid

It is interesting to see that five of the top ten searches have to do with smartphones and/or mobile devices, which begs the question, “Are smartphones a viable platform for pharmacy?” I smell a blog post coming on.

Have a great weekend everyone.

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