Monthly Archives: January 2013

Doctor in a Box

Description: Imagine a quick, inexpensive trip to the doctor at all hours of the night.

Source: www.cnn.com

Date: Jan 15, 2013

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click on link to watch video      http://cnn.com/video/?/video/tech/2013/01/15/dnt-oh-portable-doctors-office.wjw

 Questions for discussion:

1.  Do you feel that this type of health care has a bright future? Why or Why not?

2.  What situations would this type of medical care be most appropriate or advantageous?

How a ‘model’ employee got away with outsourcing his software job to China

Description: Bob was his company’s best software developer, got glowing performance reviews and earned more than $250,000 a year.

Source: www.theglobeandmail.com

Date: Jan 17, 2013

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Bob was paying a Chinese firm about $50,000 a year to do his work, then spent the day surfing the web, watching cat videos and updating his Facebook page.

“This particular case was pretty unique,” computer security investigator Andrew Valentine, who helped uncover Bob’s scheme, said in an e-mail to The Globe and Mail. “We thought it was actually pretty clever.”

Mr. Valentine made Bob’s tale public in a blog post on Monday and it has since been the talk of tech websites.    Read Rest of Story 

 Questions for discussion:

1. Is there an ethical dilemma in what Bob was doing at his place of work?  Why or Why Not??

2.  What benefits can you see with outsourcing as a company?

3.  What pitfalls can you see a company risking by outsourcing?

Could Online Education Be the End of the Typical College Experience?

Description: While faculty worry about the quality of online courses, the truth is that our education system, primarily designed to test rote memorization, is built to scale and be independent of teacher interaction.

Source: techcrunch.com

Date: Jan 15, 2013

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Today, the largest university system in the world, the California State University system, announced a pilot for $150 lower-division online courses at one of its campuses — a move that spells the end of higher education as we know it. Lower-division courses are the financial backbone of many part-time faculty and departments (especially the humanities). As someone who has taught large courses at a University of California, I can assure readers that my job could have easily been automated. Most of college–the expansive campuses and large lecture halls–will crumble into ghost towns as budget-strapped schools herd students online.    Read Rest of Story 

 Questions for discussion:

1. What is the premise of the article in regards to the future of on-line education?

2.  What are the drivers pushing on-line education forward?

3.  Is this on-line method one that you personally would benefit from?

Mining Electronic Records for Revealing Health Data

Description: Over the past decade, nudged by new federal regulations, hospitals and medical offices around the country have been converting scribbled doctors’ notes to electronic records. Although the chief goal has been to improve efficiency and cut costs, a disappointing report published last week by the RAND Corp. found that electronic health records actually may be raising the nation’s medical bills.

Source: www.nytimes.com

Date: Jan 14, 2013

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“Medical discoveries have always been based on hunches,” said Dr. Russ B. Altman, a physician and professor of bioengineering and genetics at Stanford. “Unfortunately, we have been missing discoveries all along because we didn’t have the ability to see if a hunch has statistical merit. This infrastructure makes it possible to follow up those hunches.”

The use of electronic records also may help scientists avoid sidestep the rising costs of medical research. “In the past, you had to set up incredibly expensive and time-consuming clinical trials to test a hypothesis,” said Nicholas Tatonetti, assistant professor of biomedical informatics at Columbia. “Now we can look at data already collected in electronic medical records and begin to tease out information.”

Read Rest of Story 

 Questions for discussion:

1. What are the benefits of digitizing medical records as a country?

2.  Who should own the data and have access to the data contained in these records?

3.  This medical information has a value, who should get the monetary value that this data contains?

Fortunes of Facebook May Hinge on Searches

Description: “If Facebook would decide to become serious about search, it would be in a position to give Google a run for its money,” said Karsten Weide, an analyst with IDC, a financial research company.

Source: www.nytimes.com

Date: Jan 14, 2013

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Nearly a year after it announced its bid to go public, Facebook is confronting the ultimate burden of the information age: how to help its users find what they are looking for amid the billions of pictures, “likes” and status updates they post every day.

The next frontier that Facebook needs to conquer, analysts say, is search. That would help it significantly expand revenues and, in turn, its market value. “Search, I would say, is a very high priority for Facebook,” Colin Sebastian, an analyst for Robert W. Baird & Company said. “Facebook has this incredible treasure trove of unstructured data on the site.”

Read Rest of Story 

 Questions for discussion:

1. The article talks about noisy data, what is it and what is the opportunity for Facebook?

2.  Do you feel Facebook will be successful in search advertising model, that will create a stream of revenue comparable to Google? Why or why not?