Saturday morning coffee [September 13 2014]

“The illiterate of the 21st Century will not be those who cannot read or write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn, and relearn.” –Toffler

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….


Guardians of the Galaxy was #1 at the box office last weekend. As it approaches the $600 million dollar mark worldwide –  with almost $300 million of that coming in the U.S – it’s clear that Guardians was the winner at the box office for Summer 2014. Get ready for the movie lull between now and the holiday season.

What’s the best time to consume coffee? Well, I think 24/7 is the best time to drink coffee, but according to Gizmodo “In the morning then, your coffee will probably be the most effective if you enjoy it between 9:30 AM and 11:30 AM, when your cortisol levels are dropping before the next spike” Personally, I like my first couple cups of java between 6:00 AM and 7:00 AM. Works for me. There’s no way I could wait until 9:30 AM. Just sayin’.

My Moto 360 arrived yesterday. Really nice device. Love the design. It was quite simply to setup. I had it paired with my Galaxy S5 in a matter of minutes. Looking forward to using it next week when I’m in New Orleans at the unSUMMIT annual conference for barcoding in healthcare. I will be presenting some of the information that I’ve collected over the past year on technology-assisted sterile compounding systems.

Everyone has wondered this at one time or another: Why do we pass gas?

Engadget: “…engineers at Carnegie Mellon and NC State have developed a football tracking system that could one day replace the old “stick-and-chain” measurement system for calling a first down. It’s called the Magneto-Track system, and it uses low-frequency magnetic fields to follow a tracker embedded in the game ball. The result? A real-time measurement of the ball’s position and orientation on the field.” – I’m all in favor of something like this because determining the exact spot for a ball appears to be quite variable at times. I always thought a volleyball system like this would be great. Calls near the end line in volleyball are wildly inconsistent. Technology, got to love it.

There’s an article in Applied Clinical Informatics (Appl Clin Inform. 2013; 4(2): 201–211) about medical students using mobile technology to educate patients at the bedside. “Six medical students rotating on various clerkships evaluated a total of six mobile applications. Strengths, limitations, and suggested uses in clinical care were identified.” The results were pretty positive. “Bedside teaching was enhanced by professional illustrations and animations depicting anatomy and pathophysiology. Impromptu teaching was facilitated, as resources were conveniently available on a student’s smartphone or tablet. The ability to annotate and modify images and subsequently email to patients was an extraordinary improvement in provider-patient communication.” What’s really interesting is that they compared the mobile applications against “pen and paper”. “Individual variations in artistic talent are an obvious limiting factor, as no student felt they consistently had the ability to draw anatomy with adequate detail and clarity.” That’s funny. Overall I think this type of thing should be used by pharmacist to handle medication consultation and education at the bedside. Makes sense to me. Go read the entire article, it’s free.

I have been using a Yoga 2 Pro as my primary machine for the past several months, but every once in a while I find myself missing my Lenovo x201t. So this week I switched up machines and went back to the x201t. It’s not a permanent switch, I just needed a change of pace. I really love the ThinkPad line of computers. They’re just made so well, and the keyboards are some of the best in the business. But what makes the x201t so great is it’s mechanism for converting from a laptop to a tablet. It was one of the last pen-based convertible tablet PCs to hit the market. No one makes this style any more, and that’s a real shame. I wish Lenovo would take some time and update this line of ThinkPads.


TechCrunch: “Earlier this week the California Public Utilities Commission issued warnings to all three companies [Uber, Lyft, and SideCar], stating that their implementation of shared rides isn’t allowable under the legal framework it established to regulate the nascent industry….The warning letter states that “charter party carriers cannot charge an individual fare when carrying multiple persons in a vehicle” and whoever books the car must have individual use of it.” – Apparently California doesn’t believe in reducing the cost of transportation, or reducing carbon emissions from shared rides. The whole thing seems rather silly.

The NFL has taken it on the chin this week. Ray Rice was suspended indefinitely following TMZ’s leak of a video showing him knocking his wife unconscious in an elevator. The real news here is that this isn’t news. People have known about the issue for several months, but the NFL has been slow to respond. Interesting how powerful public outcry can be. No doubt that Rice has some problems. I was taught that you never, ever raise your hand to a woman. That kind of thing simply can’t be tolerated. The entire ordeal creates some very interesting topics for conversation. Do I think the incident will have any significant impact on the NFL? No. The NFL is a billion dollar a year jargonaut. People will still tune in Sunday, and Monday, and Thursday, and so on. This is the era of football dominance, but nothing lasts for ever. Just ask Major League Baseball.

As if the Ray Rice saga wasn’t enough for the NFL, several news outlets are reporting that Adrian Peterson, running back for the Minnesota Vikings, has been indicted on felony charges for injuring a child. According to CNN, “Authorities didn’t divulge details Friday about what led to the charge. But Peterson’s lawyer said the “charged conduct involves using a switch to spank his son” — explaining that his client did so while doling out discipline “much like “he experienced as a child growing up in east Texas.” It will be interesting to see how this plays out as more details become available. I remember getting spanked as a child. I got the belt a few times. Not cool.

Anyone ever doubt the potential for information overload in healthcare? I used to read about 10 articles a week when I was still a practicing pharmacist. I typically skimmed another 10-20 abstracts every week. I was always behind. Here’s a great image to give it some perspective.

Interesting little tidbit in the European Journal of Hospital Pharmacy (Eur J Hosp Pharm doi:10.1136/ejhpharm-2014-000532) about Pharmacist intervention in pain management following heart surgery. It turns out that intervention by pharmacists led to lower mean pain score and improved compliance with analgesia. No surprise here. Pharmacists are good with pain management. After all, pain management is often times based heavily on medication selection, use, and management. Makes perfect sense to me.

CNet: “The clamshell has proved as hard to push aside in the PC world as it’s been hard to bring back in the mobile world. In the late ’90s, operating systems such as Windows CE and Symbian powered palmtops such as the Philips Velo and the Psion Series 5; the latter showed that you could create a usable keyboard in a pocket-size clamshell device. Like all PDAs, clamshells, or palmtops, were rendered obsolete by smartphones, and those with capacitive touchscreens largely wiped out those with physical keyboards.” – I miss this category of devices. My favorites were the HP Jornada 720 series. Amazing devices. I wanted one in the worst way when I was in pharmacy school, but simply couldn’t afford it. Nothing on the market today is a reasonable replacement. And before you say it, no, a tablet with BlueTooth keyboard is no comparison.

TechCrunch: “Only half of those who signed up watched even one lecture, and only 4 percent stayed long enough to complete a course. Further, the audience for MOOCs already had college degrees so the promise of disrupting higher education failed to materialize.” – I was never really a fan of the whole MOOC revolution. I always felt that it was designed to make education quick and easy, which really doesn’t fit with higher education. MOOCs may have a niche in this day and age, but I do not believe they are ready to take over for a traditional University education.

Last weekend I was down at the Rose Bowl watching the Bruins defeat the Memphis Tigers 42-35. The Tigers came to play, and it turned out to be a great game. I had a blast. Afterward I got lost in the parking lot and couldn’t find my car, but I had fun anyway. This week the Bruins travel to Texas to play the Longhorns at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Tx. a.k.a. “Jerry World”. Good luck gentleman, I’ll be watching.

Josslyn at Rose Bowl

In honor of the return of football season I think it’s time for a little “Triple T”. These videos are getting harder and harder to find, which is a real shame because they are awesome.

Have a great weekend everyone.

3 thoughts on “Saturday morning coffee [September 13 2014]”

  1. Jerry,

    Two comments:

    – I love the video that you used to close your post, and
    – You said you got lost and couldn’t find your car at the UCLA game. Really, don’t you know that there’s “…an app for that”!!! You, of all people without a technology solution… :razz:

  2. Yeah, I love Terrible Terry Tate. The videos have been around for ages. I always chuckle when I watch them. Great Job by Reebok. I only wish I could find all of them in HD.

    An app? Huh, never thought of that ;-) …Google Now usually takes care of this for me, but it didn’t have a clue at the Rose Bowl. Ever been there? It’s a bit weird. They use the golf course for general parking, and sometimes you’re a long way from the stadium. I’ve been there several times and never had an issue, but this time was different. I nearly had a nervous breakdown trying to find our car. My wife thought it was hilarious.

  3. Jerry,

    For some reason, Google Now does not always note the location where I parked my car. Prior to Google Now, I had started using a simple, free, app called Find My Car. It’s not perfect, but it works. I’ve tried others that promised more, but delivered less.

    Yes, I remember parking at the Rose Bowl. The Rose Bowl game on January 1, 1970 was my first trip to California; first ride in an airplane for that matter. That was back in the day when Michigan actually played in the Rose Bowl. That doesn’t happen often enough now. I doubt if it will be happening this year, the way they are playing.

    I wish I could have attended the unSummit to hear your presentation, but it’ wasn’t in my ORG (old retired guy) budget. Hopefully, I’ll catch up with you at either CSHP or ASHP this year…


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