Monday, June 30, 2008

Free vs. Commercial Open Source Software

This post and its comments have been moved to http://opensourceandpatents.blogspot.com/2008/09/free-vs-commercial-open-source-software.html

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

The PHPro 2.0 Beta Due for Release in February 2009

I thank everyone who tested the Personal Health Profiler Alpha and provided helpful feedback. I am now working on the Beta version, which will be available for public review in late February 2009. It is the first personal health application to support the Whole Person Integrated Care (WPIC) model.

As with the "Alpha version," the Beta will also be a prerelease version, which is being offered for testing and review purposes, as well as to promote collaboration with companies and individuals able to help expand its contents and evolve its functions. All you need to use the PHPro is Microsoft Excel 2000 or newer.

The unique features and benefits included in this version are:
  • A comprehensive self-assessment questionnaire that speeds knowledge-building through a patented process that uses sophisticated branching logic to administer only the assessment items relevant to an individual; it includes a health risk assessment and much more
  • Interactive reports providing an integrated view of a person’s biomedical and psychological (body-mind) information
  • Personalized desktop portal for easy access to relevant information on the Internet and elsewhere
  • Problem-management guides providing coping and problem-solving tools that include gateways to focused information related to troubling issues a person is facing; this process helps avoid overload by supplying information and interpretations in the context of real-life situations
  • A method for indexing and categorizing every conceivable piece of health-related information using a numeric classification system similar to the Dewey Decimal libraries use to organize books
  • A way to give the individual complete control over the data by enabling him/her to determine whom (if anyone) has permission to view each particular piece of information
  • Change tracking in which all data updates and corrections are managed and available for review.

The Beta version expands the Alpha's functionalitiy to include the following:

  • Identifies physiological (bodily) and psychological (emotional, cognitive, and behavioral) symptoms that may be caused or exacerbated by medication side-effects, along with recommendations (and time-based exclusions)
  • Identifies existing drug-drug interactions and recommendations
  • Shows a history of changes in one’s physical and psychological signs and symptoms in tables and graphs
  • Imports data from XML-based Continuity of Care Records/Documents, as well as web-based data input forms, and incorporates them into the Profile report
  • Enables a “granular” level of control for authorizing sharing of one’s health information
  • Automatically retrieves selected documents stored in one’s own computer, as well as linking to web sites
  • Offers more extensive “information therapy” (i.e., educational/instructional materials).I'm very confident you’ve seen nothing like this anywhere!

If you are interested taking a test drive, would like an opportunity to offer your input to help guide the development of subsequent versions, and/or might be interested in incorporating your health information technology tools and materials – please go to the PHPro forum at the link below. After registering on the forum, you will have access to the fully a functional software program and will be able to generate you own personal health profile on your computer. You will also be able to post questions, offer comments, discuss your wish list, and communicate with potential partners.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Interesting article about Excel

An recent article by ZDNet--Taking on Excel, and Winning, Sort Of--discusses the value of using Excel spreadsheets for a variety of applications. It's ubiquity, ease of use and functionality are reasons given; here's a quote: "...like the floppy disk icon that never dies, the Excel spreadsheet lives on and on...This ubiquity and staying power says volumes about what users want...and their continued votes in favor of a 20-plus year old user experience should give everyone who believes that the best technology deserves to win a deserved pause. Excel works well-enough for millions of users all day long..."

Following is the comment I posted:

As a self-taught programmer, I’ve been building spreadsheet applications for nearly 30 years--from Visicalc through Lotus 123 and Excel. Many of the criticisms of Excel are due to people’s ignorance of what its engine can do; mathematical computations are just a small part of its capabilities. By combining spreadsheet formulas with VBA macros and Active-X forms, it is also quite competent at database queries; XML consumption; logic-based analysis; pivot tables enabling multidimensional reports; parsing and concatenating text; dynamic presentations that include not only charts and graphs, but also a wide variety of pictures/images; and on and on.

In fact, I've developed numerous macro-driven Excel-based applications in which users wouldn't even realize it's a spreadsheet. And with the advent of Excel 2007, it’s become very a secure technology, which is also able to serve as a large flat file database (although it’s not meant to replace all databases).

I’ve also developed a patented process and use Excel to implement it. This discontinuous/disruptive technology enables loosely coupled peer-to-peer networks of publisher-subscriber nodes to share massive amounts of information with extraordinary efficiency. One such Excel-based application, which I’m about to release for public review, is a unique personal health record. Another is a unique continuity of care record software system, which I’ll be offering to the open source community. A common comment from people is “I can’t believe Excel can do all this!”

Monday, June 02, 2008

Updates: Receiving the Personal Health Profiler / Open Source Progress

The Personal Health Profiler™ (PH Profiler™) will be ready by the end of this week. It runs on Excel 2000 or newer. Click this link for a description of the software.

The PH Profiler is now ready for public review for a limited time. Click here for more.

And here's an update on our open source progress. We've decided to submit to the open source community our CCR+™ prototype within the next two weeks. This interoperable continuity of care record not only manages industry standard data sets and complies with all data standards, but it includes two patented components that enables it to:
  • Evaluate in real time abnormal lab test results and symptoms against prescribed medications to (a) identify possible adverse side effects and (b) associate psychological (emotional, cognitive and behavioral) symptoms with biomedical problems
  • Display comprehensive blood test results in the most clinical useful format
  • Use data files and customizable report templates made of spreadsheets that are able to give all clinicians information tailored to their specialties.
More to come.