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Showing posts from April, 2005

The Doctor Is In » EMR Blues

The Doctor Is In » EMR Blues : "This is a subject with which I have a more than a passing familiarity, having designed and developed an EMR software application for my practice over the past 12 years. Using an obscure but wonderful database application platform called 4th Dimension, I began in the early 1990’s to seek a solution for the repetitive mindlessness of dictating or hand-writing charts. Needless to say, a small project to create a database of chart notes and templates got wildly out of hand, and has now grown to well over 100,000 lines of code. Don’t try this at home, folks — at least if you want a life. I became so engrossed in this project that I even considered abandoning medicine and doing it full-time — a delusion which by God’s grace has since passed. But the logical-sequential perfectionistic obsessive-compulsive in me found a natural home in software development. Now, apart from the huge black hole of time and effort in its development, my EMR is about as go

Tularemia Associated with a Hamster Bite

Brief Report: Tularemia Associated with a Hamster Bite --- Colorado, 2004 : "In April 2004, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) was notified about a boy aged 3 years with diagnosed tularemia associated with a hamster bite. Tularemia has not been associated previously with pet hamsters. CDPHE conducted an investigation to determine whether other owners of hamsters were at risk. Clinicians and public health officials should be aware that pet hamsters are a potential source of tularemia. During January 2--February 8, the boy was exposed to six hamsters that his family had purchased from a pet store in the Denver metropolitan area. Each hamster reportedly died from 'wet tail disease' (i.e., diarrhea) within 1 week of purchase. One hamster bit the child on the left ring finger shortly before it died. Seven days later, the child had fever, malaise, painful left axillary lymphadenopathy, and skin sloughing at the bite site. After treatment with amox

Good Morning America and Simon & Schuster screw over amputee teenager

GMA and Simon & Schuster Present The Story of My Life - A Powerful Platform with Paltry Compensation : " Last fall, Good Morning America and Simon & Schuster recruited America’s aspiring solipsists for a contest called “The Story of My Life.” Some 6,000 people submitted everything from UFO-abduction accounts to recipes. A panel of “celebrity authors”—including Mary Karr and James McBride—selected three finalists, who worked with ghostwriters on their entries. Then last Friday, Charles Gibson announced the grand-prize winner: Farah Ahmedi, a teenager from Afghanistan who—having lost a leg and most of her family there—fled with her mother and is now an Illinois high-school student. Viewers voted for her online, and she’ll get a fairly massive 175,000-copy first printing. .... Because, unlike the winner of, say, America’s Next Top Model, Ahmedi doesn’t get a contract. The rules state that she holds no rights to the book and will not receive any royalties. She gets a flat $

'I wasn't teaching - my role was just one of crowd control. I felt useless'

The Observer : "Sylvia Thomas taught in many rough schools throughout the Seventies without ever needing to raise her voice to keep control. ....But then, last autumn, she returned to education as a supply teacher. She was so shocked by what she saw that she joined forces with the award-winning veteran documentary maker, Roger Graef, to expose it. 'Most people are talking about low-level disruption in schools but very few get to see it,' she said. 'In only two schools out of the 18 at which I taught was there anything even resembling the acceptable level of disruption a supply teacher would expect. Every other school I taught at reduced me to tears,' she added. 'I would be hoarse with shouting and desperate not to go back the next day.' Thomas spent six months recording the chaos of classrooms in state schools across the country using hidden cameras without the knowledge of the schools, parents or students involved. The result, Classroom Chaos, will b

SWAT Monkey

My Way News : "MESA, Ariz. (AP) - The Mesa Police Department is looking to add some primal instinct to its SWAT team. And to do that, it's looking to a monkey. 'Everybody laughs about it until they really start thinking about it,' said Mesa Officer Sean Truelove, who builds and operates tactical robots for the suburban Phoenix SWAT team. 'It would change the way we do business.' Truelove is spearheading the department's request to purchase and train a capuchin monkey, considered the second smartest primate to the chimpanzee. The department is seeking about $100,000 in federal grant money to put the idea to use in Mesa SWAT operations. The monkey, which costs $15,000, is what Truelove envisions as the ultimate SWAT reconnaissance tool. Since 1979, capuchin monkeys have been trained to be companions for people who are quadriplegics by performing daily tasks, such as serving food, opening and closing doors, turning lights on and off, retrieving obj

Mad Max fans' convoy ends with arrests : "Mad Max SAN ANTONIO  — Eleven 'Mad Max' fans were arrested after alarming motorists as they made their way to a movie marathon in a theatrical convoy in which they surrounded a tanker truck armed with fake machine guns. As the group was headed to San Antonio from nearby Boerne Saturday morning, police received several calls from motorists who reported a 'militia' surrounding a tanker truck, a police report states. Police charged nine people with obstruction of a highway and two others with possession of prohibited knives in addition to obstruction of a highway. One of the organizers of the convoy, Chris Fenner, said the arrests were unfair. He said he didn't know why anyone would have confused the costumed crew recreating a scene from 'Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior' — set in a post-apocalyptic wasteland — with a real threat. 'I honestly don't know how that could be, because 'Road Warrior' was so over the

Combine Solicitation

76 -- Comic Book : General Information Document Type: Combine Solicitation Solicitation Number: H92239-05-T-0026 Posted Date: Mar 28, 2005 Original Response Date: Apr 08, 2005 Current Response Date: Apr 12, 2005 Original Archive Date: Apr 23, 2005 Current Archive Date: Apr 23, 2005 Classification Code: 76 -- Books, maps & other publications Set Aside: Total Small Business Naics Code: 511120 -- Periodical Publishers Contracting Office Address Other Defense Agencies, U.S. Special Operations Command, USASOC, ATTN:E-2929, Fort Bragg, NC, 28310 1.1. BACKGROUND.     In order to achieve long-term peace and stability in the Middle East, the youth need to be reached.     One effective means of influencing youth is through the use of comic books.     A series of comic books provides the opportunity for youth to learn lessons, develop role models and improve their education.     2.     Qualifications, Experience and Requirements.     2.1.     Contractor must demons

Local Politician Unknowingly Funky, Freaky : "Rick James (search) is the name of both a Hattiesburg City Council candidate and the flamboyant singer of the 1981 hit 'Super Freak,' who died last August just as he was poised to make a comeback. The self-described 'king of punk funk,' jailed later in his career for drug abuse and violence against women, is the subject of a recurring skit on the Comedy Central cable-TV hit 'Chappelle's Show,' in which host Dave Chappelle (search), dressed as the singer, acts bizarrely and randomly shouts out 'I'm Rick James, b*tch!' According to the New York Post, people in Hattiesburg have been stealing 'Vote Rick James' signs at such a rate that the aspiring city councilman's wife has asked Comedy Central for compensation. 'We would appreciate a small campaign donation for more signs, as we are working-class people and financing this campaign out of our own pockets,' wrote Diane James to the cable channel. '

What are Statistically Improbable Phrases? : "'s Statistically Improbable Phrases, or 'SIPs', show you the interesting, distinctive, or unlikely phrases that occur in the text of books in Search Inside the Book. Our computers scan the text of all books in the Search Inside program. If they find a phrase that occurs a large number of times in a particular book relative to how many times it occurs across all Search Inside books, that phrase is a SIP in that book."

Nearly half of teachers have suffered from mental illness

Education : "By Richard Garner, Education Editor 23 March 2005 Nearly half of the country's secondary school teachers have suffered mental health problems due to worsening pupil behaviour, a survey has revealed. The research, by the Association of Teachers and Lecturers, on 300 secondary school teachers, showed that abuse at the hands of pupils had left 46 per cent taking antidepressants or facing long lay-offs from school through stress. One teacher told researchers he had been assaulted 10 times during 18 years in the profession and had suffered two breakdowns. He said he had been on antidepressants for more than three years as a result. The survey also revealed that 72 per cent of teachers had considered quitting their jobs because they were worn out by some pupils' persistent disruptive behaviour, such as threats, swearing, locking teachers out of classrooms, vandalising school property, letting down car tyres, stealing keys, throwing eggs at staff and spi

SUV vs Tree

Philip Greenspun's Weblog: : Note: The traffic accident was an interesting example of Mutually Assured Destruction via SUV.  The driver of a GMC SUV had lost control of his vehicle and spun it around, ending up by smashing into a tree. Because his vehicle was so ponderously bulky the impact had knocked the tree out of the ground.  Sadly, in a Coyote v. Road Runner-esque turn of events, the tree proceeded to fall on the SUV's roof.  In an effort to keep SUVs from rolling over there apparently isn't much structure up there.  So the entire roof of the SUV had been flattened by the tree.

Foreclosure suit moves forward : "A Copperopolis couple who lost their house in 2003 after failing to pay homeowners association dues will be in court tomorrow afternoon to face the Alameda man who bought it at a foreclosure sale. If the parties involved and their attorneys do not settle their dispute at the Calaveras County Superior Court-mandated conference, they will head to trial May 12. Retirees Thomas and Anita Radcliff made national news when the $289,000 home they'd built in Copper Cove subdivision was sold for $70,000 to an Alameda man because the Radcliffs failed to pay their $120 annual homeowner's assessment."

Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?

CodeBlueBlog :...I've watched a steady stream of neurologists, bioethicists, and neurologist/bioethicists from Columbia, Cornell, and NYU interviewed all week on Fox and CNN and MSNBC. They all said about the same thing, that Terri's CT scan was "the worst they'd ever seen"or "as bad as they've ever seen." Here's the problem with these experts: THEY DON'T INTERPRET CT SCANS OF THE BRAIN. RADIOLOGISTS DO. ....I have seen several neurologists -- in the printed media and on television -- put up a Representative CT of the brain of a normal 25 year old female and contrast this with Terri Schiavo's CT. This is a totally spurious comparison. ........What I'm saying is that Terri Schiavo's CT could be the brain of an eighty or ninety year old person who is not in a vegetative state. THOSE are the CT scans we should be showing next to Schiavo's, because in THAT case you would see similar atrophy and a brain much closer to Schia

Ultracolour Software : "The concept of UltraColour is the pairing of the physics of colour with the psychology of colour to produce a consistently reproducible psychological response in the vast majority of people. The UltraColour software integrates two new factors: first the most recent work in colour physics by the Colour & Imaging Institute at the University of Derby, notably in the mathematical correlation between colours, which demonstrates that objective colour harmony is a reality; second a theory of colour psychology that identifies links between patterns of colour and patterns of human behaviour, developed by colour psychologist Angela Wright and tested empirically since 1985. With UltraColour, it becomes possible for anyone to put colours together with confidence, without necessarily having any training or experience in colour theory or the physics of light. The software will enable them to achieve objective and consistent colour harmony and the desired ps

Singleton uses freedom of information laws to find a man in uniform

DeHavilland : 19/03/2005 A Hampshire woman has used new freedom of information laws to try and find herself an unattached man in uniform, the Guardian reports. Angela Wright e-mailed her local police headquarters in Winchester, asking for details of 'eligible bachelors within the Hampshire constabulary between the ages of 35 and 49 and details of their email addresses, salary details and pension values'. Ms Wright even made her request for information under the pseudonym 'ilikemeninuniform', in accordance with laws that permit people to preserve their anonymity when making freedom of information requests. The singleton says she made the request because she wanted to 'amuse' the police (freedom of information) team and was curious to see what response she would get. Sadly, Ms Wright's bizarre hunt for a man in uniform ended in failure. Police were happy to confirm that there are 266 eligible bachelors within the Hampshire constabulary, of wh

List of Schiavo Donors Will Be Sold by Direct-Marketing Firm

The New York Times : "The parents of Terri Schiavo have authorized a conservative direct-mailing firm to sell a list of their financial supporters, making it likely that thousands of strangers moved by her plight will receive a steady stream of solicitations from anti-abortion and conservative groups. 'These compassionate pro-lifers donated toward Bob Schindler's legal battle to keep Terri's estranged husband from removing the feeding tube from Terri,' says a description of the list on the Web site of the firm, Response Unlimited, which is asking $150 a month for 6,000 names and $500 a month for 4,000 e-mail addresses of people who responded last month to an e-mail plea from Ms. Schiavo's father. "