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Comment: Agree: doctors fall into EMR vendor lock-in trap (Score 1) 240

by KWTm (#48044919) Attached to: Back To Faxes: Doctors Can't Exchange Digital Medical Records

As a physician who was dragged screaming and kicking into having to use EPIC, I have to agree.

I never knew I could hate a company more than Microsoft. Their client is a bloated horror that nevertheless acts like the thinnest client in the world: "Oh, look, the doctor pressed the Shift key ... I guess I'll send that over the network, and wait for a response ... oh look, s/he released the Shift key now -- I guess I'll send that over the network, too..." Apparently it's based on the Internet Explorer library, so there is no Mac version (at least not when I was using it)...

The interface was so bad that I learned how to program in AutoHotkey and probably spent in excess of 200 hours over a year to automate things. AutoHotkey was a lifesaver: open source and powerful. (In fact, the pitiful xdotool we have for Linux doesn't even come close to AutoHotkey for windows, and even if I weren't forced to use Windows for my work, I might have ended up choosing it over Linux just because of AutoHotkey and its ecosystem of experienced developers.)

At the time I was with a large clinic chain that had about 40% of the market in our large sprawling metropolitan supercluster location. They surveyed the doctors, who said that on average they were spending an extra hour per day using Epic. And in the end, it was a lot of *data*-generation and not a lot of *information*. Our specialists complained that everything was being crammed into a template form, and they really couldn't tell what we were thinking, just checklists of what the patient did/did not have.

Having vendor lock-in, they have no incentive to improve. They can do whatever they want... if the clinic/hospital is already stuck using Epic, why would they spend money on fixing their problems instead of recruiting more clients?

Having said all that, even Epic is better than what I'm stuck using right now ... eClinicalWorks. That's even worse than Epic. All the problems of Epic, plus even worse interface. Right now I type my notes in a plain text editor and then use AutoHotkey to cut-n-paste it into eClinicalWorks. What a nightmare.

OpenEMR all the way!

Comment: CookieController deletes cookies with 1click (Score 1) 219

by KWTm (#46944493) Attached to: Help EFF Test a New Tool To Stop Creepy Online Tracking

I use Cookie Controller. Among other things, it has a handy button to click on. On the first click, it will wipe out temporary (session) cookies for the site you're on right now. On the second click, it will wipe persistent cookies, too. The third click wipes out session cookies for all sites. A fourth click will wipe all cookies. The button appearance changes to let you know what it's going to do, and in case you forget, hovering over the button brings up a tooltip that tells you what sorts of cookies and how many are about to get wiped.

Very handy now that Google is tracking everything. I don't particularly want all my casual searches to be linked to my Google maps requests and my Google translates.

The plugin doesn't sound as automated as Self-Destructing Cookies, so maybe I will check it out.

Comment: Palo Alto is Spanish for "perpetual traffic jam" (Score 1) 250

by KWTm (#46488803) Attached to: Why San Francisco Is the New Renaissance Florence

A benefit with Palo Alto and surrounding communities is that you can actually find parking.

Yes, traffic flows so slowly through Palo Alto (including Highway 101 on weeknights where drivers slow to a crawl as soon as you enter Palo Alto) that you can always find parking. You see, the entire city of Palo Alto is one big parking lot!

Comment: Agree: So, can computer RAM literally fill up? (Score 1) 206

by KWTm (#46123365) Attached to: It's Not Memory Loss - Older Minds May Just Be Fuller of Information

Agree. Unless "fill up" is interpreted this way, you might similarly say of the claim that "my computer RAM has literally filled up and there are zero bytes free" that there has been no physical cavity within the RAM chips which have decreased in volume due to contents physically occupying volume.

Comment: also: resistive screen is okay if it's multi-touch (Score 1) 303

by KWTm (#46089037) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Life After N900?

I hear a lot of people disparaging the resistive touch-screen of the N900, compared to the Technically Awe-Inspiring And Can't-Be-Topped (or "Apple" for short) capacitive touchscreen.

For the record, I think people just prefer the multi-touch capability of the capacitive screen. If the resistive screen could be multi-touch, then it would be okay (and much more high-res, apparently).

Well, Neo900 hardware is going to support dual-touch gestures like rotating and pinching, without replacing the original, resistive screen from N900! So you can have dual-touch on resistive. I think that addresses the complaint about resistive. Otherwise, what exactly is the advantage of a capacitive touchscreen?

Comment: Scripting on the Android? Don't make me laugh (Score 1) 303

by KWTm (#46089003) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Life After N900?

important that I run Vim.

Looking at the N900 keyboard I don't think Vim would be very usable...

Not sure what you mean. I actually and currently *do* use vim on my N900. With the keyboard.
It's what I use to take notes.
And also make phone calls (a keystroke mapping makes vim read the current line, identify the phone number on it, and call that number).
And also send text messages (a keystroke mapping makes vim identify the phone number at the start of the line, and send the rest of the line to that number as a SMS).
And also read incoming text messages -- handy when I'm driving and can't squint at the screen (a keystroke mapping makes vim call a bash script that pulls the latest text message via SQLite3, and then read it aloud using espeak).
And a similar keystroke automatically sends a reply to whoever sent the SMS, telling him/her that I got the message, but I'm driving and can't respond right now.
And so on, for "silence the N900 for (specified time, default 1 hour) then re-enable sound" because I'm in a meeting, etc. etc.
In fact, I mostly control my N900 from the vim screen, and sometimes from the bash screen; much more fine-grained control than the GUI interface. The hardware keyboard is what makes it usable when driving; with an onscreen keyboard, you couldn't keep your eyes on the road. (Cue the snarky comments about "You should never use your phone when driving, because I don't, and everyone else should be like me.")

Oh, part of the reason Vim works well on my N900 keyboard is because I've redefined it. By defaut each key has a meaning when pressed by itself, or with the Shift key, or with the Fn key. But there's a fourth combination of Shift+Fn key, which by default is the same as the Fn key -- which is completely wasted potential. So, by using the Shift+Fn key combo, I've got 30 extra characters to use, including []{}`|^~% which by default you'd have to call up the virtual keyboard to type. Maybe that's why you think the keyboard is not usable with Vim.

*I* want to be the one in control of the phone

There are lots of automation/scripting apps for Android, or with root you can get a real shell and install the scripting language of your choice.

I'd be interested in a "real" shell/scripting language. Right now I have a bash script for synchronizing various text files (such as my ToDo list) between various laptops/desktops, and I just use the same script for my N900. The script also synchronizes itself, so when I improve the script on my work laptop, for example, the versions on the other laptop and the desktop and, yes, my N900 will update themselves.

I see some really simple tools on Android -- a brief web search produces results like Tasker and AutomateIt, which are great when you want simple things like, say, changing the ringtones every Wednesday afternoon unless your phone is face-down.

I'm looking for things more like, if a SMS comes in, then make a different "SMS arrived" sound depending on who it's from; and if it's from the wife or my parents, then read the SMS out loud unless I'm at my workplace; otherwise forward the SMS contents to my email account. Here's a N900 script for "while I'm at the office, adjust my Google Voice virtual phone settings to not forward phone calls to home". Right now I'm working on something that sends a SMS to my wife telling what freeway exit I'm closest too, and my driving speed, so I don't have to manually text her while driving to let her know when I'll be home.

Tasker falls short in these abilities, to put it mildly; never mind that you can't reuse the scripts for the desktop/laptop. I don't mean to belittle your helpful info; it's just that smartphones like Android devices just aren't in the same league as computers-that-happen-to-have-phones-built-in like the N900. At the same time, I recognize that currently there's nothing quite like the N900 on the market.

So, the other choice that you mention is "with root you can get a real shell". I guess by rooting you mean jailbreaking. CyanogenMod seems to offer a lot of freedom compared to the as-is Android device, although it's a lot easier to achieve on the N900, and without jailbreaking.

How good is the hardware control in CyanogenMod-based scripting? Can you write a bash (or python) script for, say, connecting to a certain wifi? Turning phone off/on? Turning GPS on at pre-programmed intervals, getting a location fix, and then turning off again? If it's capable of that, then I'm going to keep CyanogenMod as my backup plan if nothing feasible comes out by the time my N900's fail.

Thanks for any info you (or anyone else) can provide about CyanogenMod scripting.

Comment: Brother MFC-665cw keeps ink from clogging (Score 1) 155

by KWTm (#46086739) Attached to: $499 3-D Printer Drew Plenty of Attention at CES (Video)

If unusued for a week or two, my Brother printer will exercise the ink cartridge briefly to prevent it from blocking. Yes, this does involve using up a bit of the ink. I had our brother printer sit unusued for a year, plugged in, turned on (just in case we needed it -- but we happened to be in a phase of our lives where we didn't for a long time). I noticed that the ink level would go down slowly even when unused.

Compare that to my old HP inkjet. Sat unusued for a season or so, and then the ink cartridges were unusable. Had to be replaced.

Don't know if exercising the cartridge was the only factor, but I am impressed by how the Brother printer maintains itself. Now 7 years old, and still going strong.

As for cheap ... one HP inkjet cartridge (black ink only; order colour separately) is about $25.

For the Brother printer, 4 black cartridges, two cyan, two magenta and two yellow cartridges (individually wrapped) is $6.25 on Amazon for the ten cartridges.

Yeah, I think I'll stick with the inkjet for a bit longer.

Comment: the important thing is scriptability and control (Score 3, Interesting) 303

by KWTm (#46077239) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Life After N900?

I think it's important to establish what makes the N900 great. Can't speak for the OP, but this is what I'm hoping for in a phone once my N900 finally gives up the ghost. "Hoping," notice I said, but I'm not holding my breath.

1. Scriptability. First and foremost. *I* want to be the one in control of the phone, not some app developer vetted by The Place That Decides What You Can Do With Our --I Mean Your-- Phone (or "AppStore" for short). I want to write a bash script, or a python script, and tell me when my beloved has sent me a SMS containing the word "URGENT".

2. Freedom. Yes, I mean openness as in open source. Yes, I do know not everything in the N900 was open-sourced, but a heck of a lot of it was. That let a lot of people hack it, for the benefit of the community. And it didn't void the warranty. There's something to be said for a phone that does not need you to join the Apple club with a credit card, or sign up with Big Brother Google before using the phone -- you really are independent.

3. Portability of software. It's awesome that I can run Gnumeric on this thing, but even more important that I run Vim.

4. Three things you can change: the cell phone provider, the battery, and the memory storage card. Mainly a criticism compared to the early iPhones; not sure if they still apply. I understand that there are unlocked iPhones now (which still cost more than the N900 did) but you can't change the battery. Android phones will take microSD now, I think?

In fact, to lower my chances of being forced to make do without a good alternative, I bought a second N900, and regularly synchronize the spare so I can have it up and running in case it's needed quickly. I wasn't seeing anything on the horizon, and figured I'd probably have to hang on to my pair of N900's for at least another 3 years. This Slashdot discussion is very useful.

There are, of course, lots to hate about the N900. Most of it deals with the slow swapping caused by the relatively small RAM, versus the large RAM that would be needed by a truly multitasking computer/smartphone. (Compare this with the iPhone that was out at the time, which did not multitask. Do iPhones multitask yet?) The user interface is also unintuitive and poorly thought out. Wish it had been given a chance, but once Elop came on board, there was zero chance of that.

As I've said before, the N900 is a piece of crap --but it's the BEST piece of crap in the world!

Comment: agree: as bad as "Anti-Fragile" (Score 2) 312

by KWTm (#45971843) Attached to: Why Standard Deviation Should Be Retired From Scientific Use

So you want to retire a statistical term......because people use it incorrectly in economics? Get bent. The standard deviation is a useful tool for statistical analysis of large populations.

Agreed that this is a ridiculous proposal. He probably just wants more publicity.

This was the guy who wrote the book "Anti-Fragile", which I had hoped would educate and broaden my way of thinking, in the same way that the Malcolm Gladwell books ("Tipping Point", "Blink", "Outliers") did. He ended up droning on and on without really making a worthwhile point, and I gave up after a while.

Comment: You still have to show me how to get my keys (Score 1) 290

by KWTm (#44548811) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best/Newest Hardware Without "Trusted Computing"?

I guess I'm trying to cut to the essence of the question: can I get my keys? How can I get my keys?

To clarify: The aspect on which BIOS4breakfast and Alsee disgree is that the former feels that there is not a restriction on obtaining keys as long as they are not obtained from the TPM module, whereas the latter feels that the restriction covers non-TPM aspects as well. Alsee says: "The moment they ... give owners the option to buy chips that come with a printed copy of they keys, then I will [proclaim] that Trusted Computing is wonderful ..." This is the point of contention, and the aspect on which I am focusing.

I guess I should have been more explicit: "Alsee says I can't have the keys to the TPM which comes with the computer I buy, EVEN THROUGH NON-ELECTRONIC MEANS. You disagree with Alsee. We all agree that if I can have the keys, all would be fine."

In the end, it doesn't really matter who agrees with whom where. I want my keys. How do I get them?

Comment: Prove you're right: Show me how to get my keys (Score 1) 290

by KWTm (#44539479) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best/Newest Hardware Without "Trusted Computing"?

Help me judge which of you is right.

Alsee says I can't have the keys to the TPM which comes with the computer I buy. You disagree with Alsee. We all agree that if I can have the keys, all would be fine.

So, if I buy a computer with TPM, how would I go about getting the keys?

Not a troll. I really want to know, and I'm sure other Slashdotters would thank you, too.

Comment: oblig: N900, of course (Score 1) 189

by KWTm (#44539443) Attached to: Londoners Tracked By Advertising Firm's Trash Cans

Just use a N900. It won't unnecessarily broadcast its MAC address.

Of course, then you have to deal with it being so slow and swapping all the time, and the interface that's clunkier than a museum jalopy. As I like to say, the N900 is a piece of crap. But it's the best piece of crap in the world!

Comment: that's rubbish that "mathematicians don't get it" (Score 2) 385

by KWTm (#44441353) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Should More Math and Equations Be Used In the Popular Press?

I doubt most mathematicians really understand the Pythagorean Theorem. You get so used to theories and their application that you fool yourself into thinking you know them. Take manual long division or multiplication for example. We understand how to line up the numbers and perform the operations but prove to me that it works or *why* it works!

I disagree. Some math concepts are deep, but not Pythagoras. Probably the top 5% of high school graduates understand it, and the only reason the majority of the other 95% don't is that they haven't really tried enough. You really can't understand this animated GIF?

You're talking about mathematicians, who have decided that they will be devoted working with math more than any other field, and you think they don't understand? I can't imagine a single mathematician who can't understand Pythagoras.

And long division -- you don't understand why the numbers line up? How it works? I certainly look down on you for not understanding at this moment, but even then I bet if you thought about it for a bit, you'd understand. It's the decimal system -- meaning that the four digits ABCD represent Ax1000 + Bx100 + Cx10 + D -- and the distributive property of multiplication/division over addition/subtraction.

I can't imagine anyone STARTING to learn to become a mathematician without understanding long division (yes, I mean really grasping it, not just how to write the numbers), much less having become a mathematician.

Comment: can't you still say "I'm the one who did that"? (Score 2) 480

Do you know what copyright even means?!?! Clearly you don't. Copyright is how you secure credit for something you created. You boys are DENSE.

As far as I can tell, one major difference between (what I mean by) "credit" and "copyright" is that copyright can be bought or otherwise transacted for money. For example, after you create a work (let's say a book), you can sell the copyright so that someone else (say the publisher) holds the right to receive remuneration for reproducing the work. But that does not take away your ability to say, "You know, I'm the one who did that." See also the comment from the sibling poster amaurea.

If by "credit" you mean "remuneration", then I would agree with your statement that "Copyright is how you secure credit for something you created". But that's not what I'm talking about, nor the OP. Of course there may be circumstances where, due to other contractual obligations, you are not allowed to take credit (undercover ops, ghost writing, etc.), but that's not related to the current situation.

If by "DENSE" you mean "solid; robustly built; able to withstand attacks" then I thank you for the compliment.

Comment: agree: this is about credit, not copyright (Score 5, Insightful) 480

Agree: this is more about credit than about copyright.

If you had built a bridge for your city, you should be able to list that as one of your accomplishments. It does not mean that you can walk off with the bridge. At the same time, you'd be perfectly justified in getting pissed off if someone else said that it was they, not you, who had built it.

Facts are stubborn, but statistics are more pliable.

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