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openECGproject

open ECG project
I am proud to present to you the openECGproject. Something I helped to start up and the thing that kept me away from my blog for almost two weeks.

The openECGproject is essentially an online community conceived around a simple, but challenging and worthy goal – to develop an open source hardware and software solution for electrocardiography. More precisely, to develop an open source, low cost, and clinically functional 12-lead PC-based ECG with interpretive software.

The idea was conceived to help those hospitals and doctors, mainly from the Third World, who cannot afford similar currently available and expensive commercial products. Development of a free alternative could, I believe, have a profound impact on health care not just in poor countries, but in others too.

The whole project is philanthropic and depends on the efforts of volunteers who want to make a difference. Anyone can help, so be sure to visit the site, promote it and recommend it to others.

Thank you for your support.

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im bored colgate

Google updated their iPhone app to include voice recognition. You simply tap a button, speak up keywords you want to use to search the web, the software recognizes what you said and gives you back your search results.

When I tried pronouncing my name, Ivor Kovic, Google app recognized it as “im bored colgate”. This made me laugh hysterically and realize two thing, I need to improve my accent and Google needs to improve its software. On the other hand, the app works flawlessly most of the times and it offers the best voice recognition that I encountered so far on the iPhone.

Take a look at the video demonstration from Google.

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It’s Carnival Time!

bell ringers

My hometown of Rijeka, Croatia is famous for its carnival. Our carnival is one of the biggest in Europe. During the one held in 2001, there were 72 children carnival groups with 4.200 participants and 144 carnival groups of adults with 10.000 participants from 12 countries, watched by about 110.000 spectators.

A special attraction are definitely “the bell-ringers”, shown in the picture above. The bell ringers, with a heritage dating probably back as far as pagan times, arise special interest with their specific masks, dances and bell ringing, and symbolize the upcoming spring and fertility.

From all of this it should not come as a surprise that I will be hosting the 33rd edition of Medicine 2.0 Blog Carnival on Oct 19th. Be sure to visit the site and please submit interesting articles to me. Send your submissions by Oct 17th using my contact form.

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A.D.A.M. Symptom Navigator for iPhone

Recently I wrote about native medical applications soon to be available for iPhone. Until you wait for them to come out, why not try some already available medical web applications for iPhone.

A.D.A.M. Symptoms Navigator is one such application.

With this tool, you can easily find out what to do about any symptoms — wherever you are! Learn self care, when to go to the doctor, and when it is an emergency. Whether you are traveling on vacation with your family, or on a business trip and feeling ill, an extensive library of symptom guidance is at your fingers – all within just a couple of taps.

Take a look at the video demonstration I made.

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Internet Addiction

From Wired Magazine: WTF!? Internet Addiction Nominated for Entry in the Manual of Mental Disorders.

First, we all had mild Asperger’s. Now, Internet addiction disorder? Give a geek a break. In the March issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry, Jerald Block proposed that Web abuse be added to his field’s bible, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Block cites research from South Korea, where, he says, the affliction is considered a serious public health problem, and the government estimates that 168,000 children may require psychotropic medications. In China, the Beijing Military Region Central Hospital puts the number of teenage pathological computer users at 10 million.

Like other addicts, users reportedly experience cravings (for better software, faster machines), withdrawal (logging off may cause irritability), a loss of sense of time (wee-hour fixes), and negative social repercussions (it’s so much easier to date an avatar). Sound familiar? Your friend the World Wide Web may be a monkey on your back. Or not. Just ask yourself this: If Google were a drug, would I smoke it?

My name is Ivor, and I am an addict. Where do I sign up?

Read the article mentioned by Wired: Issues for DSM-V: Internet Addiction.

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Twitter homepage parody

I am sure you know about Twitter, but let me shortly describe it for those who never heard about it. Twitter is basically a micro-blogging service that allows users to send “tweets” (text-based posts, up to 140 characters long) to Twitter website, via SMS, instant messaging, or a third-party application such as Twitterrific or Facebook. Updates are displayed on the user’s profile page and instantly delivered to other users who have signed up to receive them via the Twitter website, instant messaging, SMS, RSS, email or through an application.

This is all great, but there is a tendency for Twitter to become overwhelming and annoying, if misused. I’m telling you, I have nightmares of drowning in millions of tweets sent by my friends. Also, I am afraid of becoming obsessive and start writing about each and every thing happening in my life…I just eat a banana….I just updated my Twitter page…..I just typed a letter A and a dot. You know, something like James Joyce on Twitter. There are actually people who do this, but there are also those who are using Twitter in smart ways and for good causes. I will be blogging about this soon in more depth, but until then I made a little parody regarding the Twitter homepage, more precisely the part where they explain why you should use their service.

Here is the actual screen shot of the Twitter homepage.

Twitter homepage

And here is my version of the Twitter homepage.

Twitter modified parody page

Hope you like my version better, and by the way, can somebody show me the research demonstrating that moms want to know that you are eating soup.

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