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Comment Re:oh goody! (Score 1) 478

24 months? I'm currently writing this on a mid-2009 13" Macbook Pro. Upgraded the RAM to 8 gigs 4 years ago. New battery and SSD 2 years ago. Performance is still great. Currently looking for a replacement though because hardware is starting to die. Odd video glitches and wireless hardware will randomly disappear (sometimes causing a full system freeze if in use when the hardware randomly vanishes). I want another machine that can last like this one has. These new ones don't sound like they will fit the bill though.

Comment Re:Quite exaggerated (Score 1) 232

It's not quite as simple. There are actually different code lists for different countries. To my knowledge, it's based on the same structure, but the US version may possibly have more codes. Also, there are many "unknown" and "unspecified" codes. But take something like S68.119 - complete amputation of unspecified finger. There's a very good chance that will be rejected by an insurance company because if you are the physician and you actually saw the patient, then YOU KNOW which finger it was, so it needs to be coded. So that turns into a separate code for each individual finger (and then even a code for "other" finger.

Comment Multiple devices (Score 1) 384

Is there any reason you couldn't buy multiple single-board computers capable of running a minimal XP install? You could set each device up so that it could boot, and directly initiate the software update. You could then just plug it up to a pump, start it up, and then move on to opening up the next pump and starting the next units. I'd be that with only 5 or so units, by the time you get to the 6th pump, the first unit would be finished with an update. And I think this would probably take less time than it would take to open up and wire up all of the pumps to do it at once.

Comment I'm glad SOMEBODY finally said this (Score 5, Informative) 227

I graduated in 2001 with a CS degree. There was ONE female student in the program when I was there that I can remember (and maybe 5 female faculty members). And there were NO African American students or faculty. The lack of diversity in tech workforces is no surprise to anyone who has a degree in a technology field.

Comment EMR / EPIC is just one big cluster (Score 2) 240

Every time I see some of the stuff with EMRs, it just makes me smack my head. I'm not sure if it's ignorance or laziness that is the cause of some of this. Here's some great examples that I personally dealt with THIS WEEK:
  • I had to get some blood work done today, and the facility uses EPIC. They're using a machine for check-in.
    Problem # 1 - Whomever thought that a self-service machine for check-in with a bunch of old people trying to use it needs to be shot. They had a paid employee babysitting the machine because most of the people trying to use it were clueless.
    Problem 2 - Even when you're knowledgeable about technology, it's still not easy. You type your first and last name, and then click the button. Fine, seems easy enough. Except once you click the button, the screen refreshes, and it gives you no indication whatsoever that you successfully checked in. The only reason I knew was because the babysitter told me that it went through.
  • I decided to download my medical record from the online interface out of curiosity, to see what it looks like. In the file, there was a "human readable" PDF, which used an insane bitmap font that was anything but readable. And looking through the XML file, there was a crazy amount of bogus data (such as fake names and addresses) in addition to my real data.

It all really scares me. Human error is limited in scope, but human error with a technology multiplier (and probably will) wipe all of us out.

Comment Auto-save is NOT your friend (Score 5, Insightful) 521

Sometimes, I don't want to save. I will open a document with the explicit purpose of making changes that I don't want saved. Even Gmail's autosave has burned me pretty badly. I spent an hour typing out a very long email. Toward the end of it, something happened, and the whole body of text was gone. I'm still not really sure if it was a keyboard shortcut I inadvertently triggered, browser bug, or what. But I just thought "no biggie... I'll just go back to the auto-saved version". So I open up the autosaved version, and the latest auto-save happened AFTER the email body was deleted. So much for autosave @#$!#$@!!!!

Comment How does this compare to other AP exams (Score 1) 325

In high school ('93-'97), I took every AP class I could (CS, English, Chemistry, History, etc). Each class had about 20 to 30 people in it, and I don't think a single one of us took the AP exam. AP wasn't so much about being able to take an exam to get college credit, but was more about being challenged. For me, I specifically did it to better prepare me for college. And honestly, it made college easier, and I did better overall than I would have otherwise.

Submission + - Novel windows block out noise but let in fresh air (

cylonlover writes: There are few things better than lazing around the house on a warm summer day, whose fragrant zephyrs speak of spicy isles and heaven-breathing groves. At least, until the neighbors start their leaf-blowers and the city needs to tear up the sidewalks. Noise pollution is one of the scourges of urban and suburban life, which can drown out nature's melodies to cause annoyance, stress, and hearing loss. Now, however, a team of South Korean engineers has invented a remarkable window that lets air in while keeping a great deal of noise out.

Submission + - Video Streaming For The Elderly

ChrisC1234 writes: My grandparents are getting older and don't get out much anymore, and with the demise of video stores (and not even understanding what a RedBox is), they don't see movies anymore. They've got internet access, so I'm thinking of getting them a streaming appliance and a Netflix account. So I'm wondering what device is the easiest for elderly people to use. I'm thinking either a Roku or Apple TV, but open to other options. It just needs to be easy to navigate and support closed captioning. Has anyone else done this successfully?

Submission + - Microsoft Uses CS Education Crisis to Sell Azure

theodp writes: 'The lack of education in computer science is an example of an area of particularly acute concern,' Microsoft General Counsel Brad Smith told Congress as he sold lawmakers on the need for legislation to improve 'America’s access to high skilled foreign talent'. So, should Microsoft also be using the nation's CS education crisis to sell Windows Azure? At the end of October, Microsoft will award $100,000 worth of donations to the five highest vote-getting technology education nonprofits 'who teach programming and provide technical resources to those who might not otherwise get the chance.' To vote for your favorite nonprofit, Microsoft explains, there's one little catch: You must first join the AzureDev Community. Currently in the lead for the top prize of $50,000 is Black Girls Code. But moving up the ranks into second place is, the sometimes dual-missioned organization advised by Microsoft's Smith that launched a few months ago to great fanfare with a slick viral promotional video featuring supporters Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg. has put out a call for votes to their 140,000 Facebook fans, and 17,000 Twitter followers to help them lay claim to Microsoft's $50,000 first prize. So, are you rooting for the billionaire-backed underdog?

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