Why can't pacemaker users read their own medical data?

In this ten minute TEDx talk, Hugo Campos explains his frustration with the fact that his pacemaker is designed to let his doctor read his biometric status, but to stop the patient from doing the same. As a result, Campos isn't able to use his pacemaker as a diagnostic tool to help make good choices about eating, exercise and other activities. He writes,

I have an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) for primary prevention of sudden cardiac arrest. I have been fighting for my right to access the data collected by the ICD for about 3 years now, without much success. Data about my heart is regularly collected from the implanted device by its manufacturer over remote monitoring.

The modern ICD is a sophisticated computer capable of detecting and treating malignant arrhythmias. It is also capable of wireless telemetry, a feature that is used by all device manufacturers for remote patient monitoring. Today, there are about 5 top manufacturers of pacemakers and ICDs and 1MM patients being remotely monitored on a regular basis. Not a single one of these patients is allowed access to their device's data.

I am sure you'd agree that this is an objectionable practice and it must be stopped.

TEDxCambridge - Hugo Campos fights for the right to open his heart's data

Vancouverites! Coming to Kidsbooks!

As part of my Pirate Cinema tour I'll be coming to Vancouver's Kidsbooks on Oct 21 at 7PM. You've got to buy a $23.50 ticket, but it comes with a copy of the book, which normally retails for $25. Kidsbooks is one of the last independents standing in Vancouver, and they're a great store, so we really want to make the event a big success for them. Cory

TV news programs ignore false claims in the thousands of political ads that pay their bills


Josh Levy from Free Press sez, "My colleague Tim Karr just released a report exposing the billions spent on political ads around the country -- and how that money is pocketed by local TV stations. Are these stations offering any local news coverage to debunk the lies in these ads? Are they exposing the deep-pocketed interests behind the groups buying ad time? The short answer is: No. The local stations we looked at in the report provided no local stories exposing the special interests behind these ads, and only one station among the 20 surveyed devoted even a few minutes to investigating whether these ads told viewers the truth."

Here are some details from our new report, Left in the Dark: Local Coverage in the Age of Big-Money Politics:

* The Super PACs vs. Justin Bieber: The hundreds of hours of local news that aired in the two weeks prior to Wisconsin's June 5 recall election included no stories on the 17 groups most actively buying time on Milwaukee's ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC affiliates. While these stations were ignoring the impact of political ads, they found time to air 53 local news segments on Justin Bieber.

* Fact-Check Fail: The ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC affiliates in Charlotte, Cleveland, Las Vegas and Milwaukee did not once fact-check the claims made in political ads placed locally by the nation's top-spending Super PACs and independent groups, even though these groups had spent tens of millions of dollars on frequently deceptive ads in those markets.

* Hush Money: Cleveland's four affiliate stations provided no coverage of the Koch brothers-funded group Americans for Prosperity, despite airing the group's anti-Obama attack ads more than 500 times. Americans for Prosperity has reportedly spent more than $1.5 million to place ads on Cleveland television stations.

* News Out of Balance: Affiliate stations in Tampa aired on average more than 200 political ads a day throughout August. Yet only one station, WTSP, devoted news time to fact-checking any of the most prominent groups buying these ads. In a single segment running less than three minutes, WTSP rated an Americans for Prosperity ad as false, a finding that didn't stop the station from running the group's anti-Obama ads more than 150 times that month.

TV Stations Accept Political Ad Cash -- and Leave Viewers in the Dark (Thanks, Josh!)

Nude Psychotherapy (vintage seventies magazine ad)

"Be the first on your block to know about nude psychotherapy." A 1970s-era magazine ad, scanned and shared in the Boing Boing Flickr Pool by Boing Boing reader v.valenti.

Mystical experiences without significance

Ed from Aeon sez, "The Scottish science fiction writer Ken MacLeod, (Intrusion, The Night Sessions) has a short essay in Aeon magazine exploring two strange sensations. Each one sounds like a mystical experience, but 'solves no problem, conveys no insight, and yet leaves me with an impression of significance'. Are they mere glitches in the mechanism by which his brain makes meaning? Are they rare or common? Do they mean anything?

"Aeon is a new online magazine about nature, culture, ideas and experience. One of its themes is finding new ways to grapple with spirituality, whatever it might be."

When I tell people about it they either look blank or say: ‘Oh! You mean you have that too?’ But it isn’t a bond between us, not a secret, just a peculiarity, an anomaly, perhaps as random a feature of our minds as the ability to roll one’s tongue is of our bodies. It solves no problem, conveys no insight, and yet leaves me with an impression of significance. It has an aftertaste, but no taste. That impression, that aftertaste, may be its empty secret: it may be a tiny glitch in the process by which our brains find meaning in sense.

Like someone is there (Thanks, Ed!)

US naval analyst on science fiction space warfare

NewImageForeign Policy magazine interviewed naval analyst Chris Weuve, a former US Naval War College research professor, about space warfare in science fiction.

Has sci-fi affected the way that our navies conduct warfare?

CW: This is a question that I occasionally think about. Many people point to the development of the shipboard Combat Information Center in World War II as being inspired by E.E. Doc Smith's Lensman novels from the 1940s. Smith realized that with hundreds of ships over huge expanses, the mere act of coordinating them was problematic. I think there is a synergistic effect. I also know a number of naval officers who have admitted to me that the reason they joined the Navy was because Starfleet Command wasn't hiring.

"Aircraft Carriers in Space" (Thanks, Todd Lappin!)

Predictable, but reassuring news: Marc Webb signs on to direct The Amazing Spider-Man sequel

In Stuff We Knew Would Probably Happen, the director of this summer's The Amazing Spider-Man, Marc Webb, has officially been confirmed to helm the sequel. And it's a good thing, too, because it already had a release date of May 2, 2014! That would have been really awkward without a director. Mr. Parker/Spidey, Andrew Garfield, has also signed on to return, but Emma Stone (Gwen Stacy) is still in talks. Probably trying to find out if/when that thing that happens to her character in the comics will be happening in this movie or, perhaps, another one. (via /Film)

Treasure Island Music Festival 2012: contest winner!

NewImage

I'm pleased to announce that the winner of our Treasure Island Music Festival 2012 ticket contest is Russell Walks! Below is his witty winning Haiku, about The xx, who are playing at the festival. Along with the Boing Boing t-shirt that all three finalists scored, Russell receives a pair of VIP 2-Day Tickets to the San Francisco festival October 13-14 featuring The XX, M83, Grimes, Best Coast, Ty Segall, SBTRKT, Youth Lagoon, The Presets, and more than a dozen other eclectic artists. Congratulations Russell and thanks to all who entered!

Russell Walks:

Love the Double X
He says, staring at her shirt.
Man, she hates liars.

Treasure Island Music Festival 2012

iPad left at airport checkpoint ends up at TSA inspector's house

ABC News ran a sting against dirty TSA inspectors by leaving behind iPads (with tracking spyware) at ten airport checkpoints known for theft and following them electronically. One iPad, left at an Orlando checkpoint, moved 30 miles to the home of Andy Ramirez, a TSA inspector at the airport. Initially, he denied stealing the iPad, then he blamed his wife. He has since been fired from the TSA.

I'm sure that he was the only crook working in the entire agency and now we're all safe. Thank goodness.

According to the TSA, 381 TSA officers have been fired for theft between 2003 and 2012, including 11 so far in this year.

The agency disputes that theft is a widespread problem, however, saying the number of officers fired "represents less than one-half of one percent of officers that have been employed" by TSA.

...Ramirez produced the iPad only after ABC News activated an audio alarm feature, and turned it over after taking off his TSA uniform shirt.

His explanation for the missing iPad in his home was that his wife had taken it from the airport.

"I'm so embarrassed," he told ABC News. "My wife says she got the iPad and brought it home," he said.

... No TSA official, including director John Pistole, would agree to be interviewed by ABC News about the issue of theft and what steps TSA has taken to address the long-standing problem.

In its statement, the TSA said it "holds its employees to the highest ethical standards."

Republicans have promised to fix this problem by firing the unionized federal workers and replacing them with private contractors. Because private contractors -- not directly accountable to the government, insulated by layers of contractor/subcontractor relationships -- would never, ever abuse their authority. Which is why mall security guards are the pinnacle of policing efficiency.

ABC News Tracks Missing iPad To Florida Home of TSA Officer (via Beth Pratt)

AMC will stream the season premiere of The Walking Dead for Dish customers

As they did for the season premiere of Breaking Bad this summer, AMC will be streaming the third season premiere of The Walking Dead online for all those frustrated Dish customers who still don't have AMC. It's only good for the one episode -- airing Sunday, October 14 at 9:00 PM EST) -- and then everyone will have to seek out less legal ways to watch the show (or just go to a friend's house). Visit the page especially for Dish customers for more details. (via Bleeding Cool)

Pennsylvania police post perp pix on Pinterest

The Pottstown Mercury, a newspaper in Pottstown, Pennsylvania, recently started posting police mugshots of wanted criminals on Pinterest. Sounds crazy, right? Well, the novel use of a social networking site known best for nail art, cupcakes, and motivational posters with bad typography has become quite a success for local law enforcement. As you can see by scrolling through the board, users are sharing comments on where police might look for each wanted man or woman. Here's an interview with one of the paper's "Pinners," and more context on Poynter. According to an interview with police in the Pottstown Mercury, the project has resulted in a 58% increase in arrests.

"One Day," an animated short (video)

[Video Link] A beautiful, Pixar-esque short from students at the French arts and media school Gobelins. More wonderful shorts on their YouTube channel. (via Short of the Week)

The Star Trek-Psy parody you know you wanted: Klingon Style

This was destined to happen, and it's all in Klingon. What better way to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Star Trek: The Next Generation and the internet, all at the same time? (video link) (via Comediva)

Outlaw auction includes Bonnie and Clyde's guns

You could be the new owner of Bonnie & Clyd's personal pistols, Bugsy Siegel's Nevada Project Corporation stock certificate, or a subpoena signed by Wyatt Earp. This Sunday, RR Auction is holding an "American Gansters, Outlaws, and Lawmen" auction with those fine artifacts and many more criminal curiosities. "Bonnie and Clyde's guns go up for auction"

A classic work of entomology, available online in French and English

In 1879, Jean-Henri Fabre wrote a book about insects called Souvenirs entomologiques. Today it's considered a classic of entomology. An English translation, with some absolutely beautiful illustrations like the cicadas pictured above, was published in 1921.

You can read the full book online for free. Yes, both versions. The original French work is available at Gallica. Meanwhile, you can read the full English version at Google Books. Very neat!

Via Alex Wild