What do you do when patients are so isolated and travel is so difficult and money is so tight that symptoms go untreated because information travels so slowly? Oh, and there’s not a dime to spare. This is the challenge faced by many rural health centers utilizing a system of community health workers who travel from clinics to reach patients in very isolated regions. They usually travel by foot or bike. They often cover such large areas that they may not return to the base clinic more than once a month. In wealthier regions solutions would probably involve large scale databases, interactive web pages, medical equipment hooked up to doctors in centralized locations and maybe even a car or two. Sometimes a lack of resources and a will to succeed is more than ample to create a real world changing difference. Frontline SMS:Medic was one of the business plans presented … Continue reading
I’ve been thinking about lessons we can take from the physics community to more successfully develop ideas — and I’ve been wearing mismatched socks. I blame Louisa Gilder and her wonderful exploration into the weird path physics took towards accepting entanglement over the past century. In 1964 John Bell lit a small fire at the foundations of modern physics using timber put in place by Einstein 30 years prior. It launched a few investigations but in truth mostly smoldered for another 17 years until he stated the implications of his theory a bit differently. He spoke about Bertlmann’s Socks. “Dr. Bertlmann likes to wear two socks of different colors. Which color he will have on a given foot on a given day is quite unpredictable. But when you see that the first sock is pink you can be already sure that the second sock will not be pink. Observation of … Continue reading
Could the current financial crises be explained by a lack of lions, tigers and bears? Could real fear be the key attribute that drives your next success? Ideas from strange places: I found myself asking these questions as I read “Where the Wild Things Were,” a gripping account of predator/prey dynamics. Continue reading
I like the idea of open source banking. Today’s roiling financial markets are creating opportunities for technology and new capital sources to rewrite how money flows. By pushing for an open source model we could end up with advantages driven by transparency, networking, and robust testing of business models. So what happens when banks actually bid on your savings account? Looks like the Dutch are about to find out. The auction model is being tested by www.sparbod.com (In Dutch, unfortunately, here is a bit more information.) You post how much you are willing to save and banks ‘bid’ on your business.
By taking the banking system Open Source we can provide all the benefits of the mega-banks while limiting the dangers that they now present. Continue reading