Friday, February 29, 2008

Samsung Ace from Sprint

It pays to have friends. This is the new Samsung Ace available from Sprint. It was announced last week, but I'm not sure of its availability.

This puppy is really skinny, probably about 1/3 to 1/4 the thickness of my Treo 700P. It's too bad Palm just can't innovate any more. My next phone will not be a Palm and I never thought I'd say that. I've had a Treo since the Visorphone days.

The ACE looks pretty slick. Despite their recent financial woes, Sprint still has a killer network. Much faster than AT&T which is the main thing that is keeping me with Sprint at this point.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

GC America Announces GC Dry Mouth Gel to help patients with xerostomia

GC America has a new product on the market. Called GC Dry Mouth Gel, it is aimed at reducing the discomfort and disease that is brought about by patients experiencing dry mouth. Xerostomia is on the rise in dentistry as the population ages and as more and more medications are brought to market that have dry mouth as a side effect.

In addition to the discomfort that comes with a lack of natural saliva, a dry mouth also lacks the buffering affect of saliva that can reduce the ph of plaque acids. Combine this with the fact that plaque adheres more readily to a dry tooth than one moistened with saliva and there is a recipe for rapidly progressing and hard to treat dental decay problems.

GC America, who has brought prevention to the forefront with their MI paste products, is now waging a second war on dental decay by helping those suffering with xerostomia.

Dry Mouth Gel is applied by placing a generous amount onto a clean finger. The gel is then smeared on all tooth surfaces as well as gingival (gum) tissue. It can be applied anytime during the day as required. When applied at night before bed it should be after normal tooth brushing.

It provides up to 4 hours of relief and is available in several flavors. It is safe to swallow and can even be used by denture wearers.

The product is available now and can be ordered through your favorite dealer.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

8 Monitor Setup allows you to *really* realease your Inner Geek


OK, this is the kind of setup that screams "Flucke, you've got to buy me!" This incredible 8 monitor setup is made by a company called Humanscale and the frame setup itself is called the Paramount Parabolic Multi-Monitor Display. It is a frame that allows up 8 monitors to be attached and used. It literally curves around the user so that you can be surrounded by the monitors for easier orientation and viewing.

Studies have been done that show users experience a 20% increase in productivity when using 2 monitors. I can't imagine a 160% increase in productivity, but I can imagine a definite ability to get more done.

In my case, a setup like this would allow me to have a separate monitor for my Eaglesoft schedule (that dynamically updates), my e-mail, Google reader, a patient chart, patient images (for diagnosis and editing), Winamp for music, and still have 3 screens leftover.

The frame is due to be released sometime in the first quarter of 08, but I have no word on pricing.

More info can be found at the company website.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Sanwa keyboard for tight spaces

For those looking to computerize and having limited space, here is an option. This keyboard from Sanwa is smaller than a standard keyboard and has a touchpad like a laptop built-in. It comes in 2 versions, wired and wireless.

While I would prefer working with some type of wireless mouse in most instances, this device could be a great thing for people who just don't have the room for a regular mouse.

One other advantage I can see is for patient consultations where you might want both keyboard and mouse readily available in the operatory.

There are similar devices available from other manufacturers as well.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Tooth Fairy Deals with Inflation

Even the ever gracious "princess of the pearly whites" has to deal with inflation.

It seems a survey by dental plan company Securian Dental indicates the average price per tooth paid by the Tooth Fairy has increased from $1.71 last year to $2.09 this year.

Here's the story as it appears on WebMD:


(WebMD) Even the tooth fairy feels inflation's bite. The price per baby tooth is 22% steeper today than it was a year ago.

That's according to a new tooth fairy poll from Securian Dental, which runs dental plans.

The poll, which included 647 parents, shows that the tooth fairy pays $2.09 per baby tooth, on average, up from $1.71 last year.

Most parents said they pay $1 per tooth. The second most common payment was $5 per tooth.

Then there were the outliers. One parent says the payout is a nickel per tooth. And at the other end of the spectrum, another parent splurges with $50 per tooth. And since kids have 20 baby teeth, which get replaced by 32 grown-up teeth, that adds up to a pretty penny.

What's up with tooth fairy inflation? Chalk it up to a boom in the $5-per-tooth crowd, notes Marty Weiland, operations analyst for DeCare Dental, which administers Securian Dental plans.

"The tooth fairy poll average usually reflects the health of the economy. However, this direction of change is inconsistent with trends exhibited in other more commonplace indices," Weiland says in a news release.

"The NASDAQ and Dow Jones Industrial Average indices have decreased 7.4% and 3.6% over this same period, respectively," says Weiland. "Either the tooth fairy is an expert investor or we may be seeing something analogous to the 'lipstick effect,' where during an economic downturn or a recession, the tendency is for consumers to purchase small, comforting items rather than large luxury items."

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Impressions for the Chicago Midwinter

Greetings from Midway airport as I wait for my return flight for KC.  The Chicago Midwinter is over (for me) and will be ending officially later today.


I was busy a good portion of my time in Chicago this year.  I had 3 lectures to do which didn't leave me a great deal of time to explore the show floor, but I thought I would offer my overall impressions about some things I heard about and some that I had a chance (although brief) to see.

My impressions:

  1. The meeting was very well attended.  Friday especially the show floor was packed.  This is in stark contrast to last year when a major winter storm moved in and lots of people were forced to leave early.
  2. The vendors were happy.  The vendors I had a chance to speak with were overall happy with the attendance and the contact they made with doctors.
  3. 3M's Lava COS (Chairside Oral Scanner) looks ready for prime time.  I had a chance to see it privately at the ADA in San Francisco and it is much improved in its present form.  At the ADA I asked to take a photo and was politely asked not to.  Now I can understand why as the unit is very streamlined and much more polished.  3M was showing demos of the unit in the booth.  The technology looks very promising.  I'd love to get some hands-on time with it to really offer my opinions.  The website for the device is here.
  4. Gendex was purchased a while back by Danaher as was iCat.  At this meeting we saw one of the synergies of these 2 companies as Gendex announced the arrival of the GB-CX500 powered by iCat.  One of my friends privately dubbed it the "gCat" which I like a lot.  The device is a more affordable version and doesn't appear to offer all of the bells and whistles of its big brother the iCat, but it could prove a very useful solution for those looking to acquire a CBCT on a budget.  The website for the device is here.
  5. If you own a company that makes impression materials, you should be concerned.  Digital impression systems are really beginning to appear on the market.  In addition to the 3M Lava COS mentioned above, there is the E4D Dentist, Cadent, the grandaddy of them all Cerec, and others.  I also saw a product from Geomagic that is the software piece of the Kavo Everest product.  The folks at Geomagic walked me through designing an onlay and a crown.  I was amazed at how quick and easy this software was to use.
  6. Paperless and Lasers are still hot topics.  These were the 2 topics that I lectured on this year and I was blown away by the attendance.  Even my Saturday afternoon course was full.  Obviously there is still a need for education on these subjects and people in the profession are eager to learn about them.
  7. Dentrix launched G3 (which is a major upgrade) and will really help with Dentrix users trying to go paperless.  They are also working on an update to their Guru patient education software.
That wraps up the blog report.  If you have questions or comments, please feel free to e-mail or post.

Friday, February 22, 2008

3M Chairside 3D Scanner

This I the unit 3M is now selling for chairside 3D scannimg. They acquired the Brontes company that developed this product about 18 months ago.

Geomagic software from the show floor

Here is a screenshot of Geomagic design software. Live from the Chicago Midwinter.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Wow! T-Mobile offer $100/month Unlimited Voice & Text

The headline says it all. Even though I'm a Sprint customer, I'm jealous of the T-Mobile offer. $100 bucks for all that is dirt cheap.

As we become more and more dependent on wireless and the need for copper to the home diminishes, we'll probably begin to see more and more of these types of offers.

The only real need for a wire is now for really high speed broadband. My new office has Road Runner Business Class and I'm getting 10mbps down and 1 mbps up which is phenomenal. Qt some point wireless may penetrate that market too, but until then, this T-Mobile deal is pretty sweet.

Windows Home Server Users Beware

It seems that the folks at Redmond are having a hard time getting WHS to play and get along well with a myriad of problems. Among them are:

  • Photoshop Elements
  • Zune Software
  • Apple iTunes
  • TagScanner
  • Mozilla Thunderbird
  • Adobe Lightroom
  • Intuit QuickenMS Digital Image Library
  • MP3BookHelper
  • ACDSee
  • WinAmp
  • Windows Media Player 11
  • Microsoft Office Excel
  • Visual DataFlex
At this point I'm advising WHS users to hold tight and wait for a fix. If you are a WHS user and use any of the above programs, don't open them until the bug is fixed. You risk datat corruption and headaches and that's the best you can hope for currently.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Blu-Ray wins format war, HD DVD is toast

If you've been waiting to buy a hi-def DVD player because of the 2 battling formats (I know I have), then wait no more. The official winner is Sony's Blu-Ray platform.

Yesterday Toshiba officially ended the format war with the announcement that it is discontinuing their HD DVD line.

I had an inkling this was coming since some major retailers, including Walmart, have stated recently they will only sell Blu-Ray, but the Toshiba announcement makes it official.

This should create a price drop in Blu-Ray players as well since they are now the defacto standard.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Order an 8GB SD Card for only $38


I came across this offer and thought I would pass it along. eCost is selling an 8GB SD card that should be compatible with any device you have for $29 + $9 shipping. This will hold literally *hundreds* of digital photos, info, you name it.

Even at $38 this is an incredible deal.

Quantities are limited so if you are interested, don't wait.

Details on ordering can be found here.

Monday, February 18, 2008

A Backup Solution for non Techie Types


Everyone knows that backing up is important, but sometimes actually performing a backup can be confusing/overwhelming. Clickfree to the rescue. This 120GB backup drive comes with everything needed for painless backups.

When you attach the device to your computer via USB it downloads software to the PC that automates the backup process. From that point forward, every time you plug the device into your computer, it automatically performs a backup. Pretty slick.

The device is currently available (Model HD700) for $169 from the Clickfree website. The comany says there should be a 250GB model available soon, hopefully in the summer.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Samsung Offers SATA II Solid State Drive in Volume Production


I've been happily reporting for the last few months that Solid State Drives (SSD's) are the future. No moving parts make these devices much more durable and reliable (think iPod Nano vs. vinyl LP). The main stumbling point up to now has been drive size. With my current MacBook Pro having a 120GB HDD, I really don't want a notebook, or any computer for that matter, with a smaller hard drive.

Another evolution has been annonced as Samsug puts 64GB SSD's into production. It won't be long now before the SSD becomes as large as normal HDD's and then the HDD death spiral will begin. Check out the press release from Samsung for more info.

SEOUL, South Korea--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd, leader in advanced semiconductor technology, announced today that it has begun mass producing 64 GB solid state drives (SSDs) with its new SATA II interface, offering the highest performance rates in the industry for premium notebook PCs.

Able to read data at 100 megabytes per second and write it at 80 megabytes per second, Samsungs SATA II SSD is up to 60 percent faster than SATA I drives and performs two to five times faster than conventional hard disk drives (HDDs). It also consumes nearly 75 percent less power than typical HDDs (1.45 watts compared to 2.1 watts) and at 73 grams, SSDs are much lighter than HDDs.

While there will always be a market for HDDs, we see growing demand for our new SSDs, especially now that they are available with the SATA II interface, said Jim Elliott, director, flash marketing, Samsung Semiconductor. SSD technology is especially viable for the business and high-end consumer notebook markets because of its outstanding performance, as well as the added value gained from virtually no downtime and faster operating speeds.

Extremely reliable, the SATA II SSD is comprised primarily of single-level-cell NAND flash memory, has no moving parts, is noise-free, produces very little heat and is much less susceptible to the shocks and vibrations that can be challenging to traditional disk drives. The new SATA II SSD can resist up to 1500 Gs of shock in a half millisecond compared to a shock resistance rating of 300 Gs in 2 milliseconds for a typical HDD.

Samsung said its 64 GB SATA II SSD, which began shipping earlier this month, will be available as an option within the next few weeks in select Dell and Alienware notebooks.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

32GB Flash Drive that is almost indestructable

If you are worried about the safety of your data, both from prying eyes and from the dangers of having something bad happen to it, take a look at this...

Flash Survivor™ is an extremely durable, water resistant, drop-tested flash USB memory drive. By design it is perfect for transporting valuable data such as personal files, photos and applications without having to worry about damage or loss of data due to the elements.

Features:

  • Encased in extremely strong CNC-milled, anodized aircraft-grade aluminum.
  • Water resistant to 200M through the use of a EPDM waterproof seal.
  • Protected from vibration or impact damage through the use of a molded shock dampening collar.
  • Plug-&-Play with any USB 2.0 certified peripheral computer port (backward compatible with USB 1.1).
  • Includes the True Crypt security application (Windows Vista/XP/2000 compatible only) allowing for a virtual encrypted drive using AES-256 encryption.
  • USB extension cable and Dog Tags included.
  • Protected by a Limited 10-year Warranty.

Friday, February 15, 2008

SightMate Helps Visually Impared See Better with Technology

Although the device looks like my MyVu glasses for iPod viewing, they are actually helping the blind see. From DailyTech:


For people with visual disabilities like Glaucoma or Diabetic Retinopathy, vision loss is a fact of life that they have to live with. Eyetonomy thinks it has the answer to helping people with visual impairments see better and it’s called the SightMate.

At first glance the SightMate looks very similar to the video glasses that are common for gamers and for watching movies on a simulated big screen. However, the SightMate LV920 has a cyclops like camera in the center of the glasses.

This camera has a 2 megapixel sensor coupled with a 3x optical zoom. Inside the glasses the wearer looks at twin high-resolution 640 x 480 pixel displays that can tilt up to 15 degrees for comfort. The device can also compensate for colorblindness.

The entire system weighs eight ounces and has a controller that weighs less than one pound with the batteries installed. The controller allows the wearer to zoom in and out on objects and control other functions of the system. According to SightMate clinical trials have shown that people with between 20/70 and 20/200 acuity in their best eye have been able to increase their reading and distance acuity to a range of 20/20 to 20/40.

The device also uses edge detection and color correction in concert with the optical zoom to assist users who suffer from gradual visual loss over the entire field of view. SightMate warns that the device is designed to be used while sitting and not designed for use with anything requiring motion like walking or driving.

Eyetonomy sells the SightMate LV920 for $3,499, which seems expensive considering that similar video glasses go for well under $1,000. The other problem with SightMate is that the device looks quite odd.

It will be hard to get those conscientious about their appearance to use this device. However, for use in the home this may be a good stop gap for people with failing vision until something else, like contact lenses with embedded electronics are available.


Thursday, February 14, 2008

Arestin Wins Awards

Warminster, PA (February 13, 2008) − OraPharma, Inc., a specialty oral health- company dedicated to bringing scientifically and technologically superior products to the dental community, received several industry accolades in 2007 for its ARESTIN® (minocycline hydrochloride) Microspheres, 1 mg, an adjunct treatment to scaling and root planing (SRP) procedures for reduction of pocket depth in patients with adult periodontitis.
Specifically, OraPharma recently received the coveted 2007 Townie Choice Award from Dentaltown. This is the fourth consecutive year that ARESTIN® has received the Townie Choice Award from Dentaltown magazine readers.

In addition, the company received an additional 2007 Townie Choice Award from Hygienetown, making ARESTIN® a three-time winner for the publication, courtesy of the hygienists who use the locally administered antibiotic (LAA) as part of their personal standard of care.

ARESTIN® is featured in the December 2007 “Special Edition” Townie Choice Award issues of both Dentaltown and Hygienetown. The Townie Choice Awards were created to provide dental professionals with another source of information when making difficult purchase decisions. This is the only award in dentistry that comes directly from the professionals who treat patients every day.

“This year, more than 2800 dental professionals voted for the products, services, and equipment that they use every day,” remarked Thomas Giacobbi, DDS, FAGD, editorial director, Dentaltown. “Each and every product chosen by our readers plays an important part in their everyday professional success. The Townie Choice Awards are indeed a profile of our community product loyalties.”

For the complete list of winning Townie Choice products, please pick up the December 2007 “Special Edition” Townie Choice Award issues of Hygienetown and Dentaltown, or log onto www.hygienetown.com or www.dentaltown.com.

Moreover, ARESTIN® was named as one of the “Products Dental Hygienists Cannot Live Without” by a leading independent, nonprofit dental education and product testing foundation (full report is available upon request).

Selected by more than 400 dental teams as a product in the dental professional setting that was most essential and valued by dental professionals, ARESTIN® was reported by 78% of hygienists as a product they depend on routinely to make their practice “easier, faster, better, and more enjoyable.” According to the report, ARESTIN® has gained popularity due to “ease of use.”

In addition, the same independent, nonprofit foundation named ARESTIN®
as one of the best products of the year, receiving the top rating of “Valuable”
based on 79% of 30 evaluators stating they would purchase ARESTIN®.
“We are extremely proud and excited that ARESTIN® was selected by dental professionals as an essential part of their standard of care when treating periodontal disease,” remarked OraPharma’s Product Director, ARESTIN® Marketing, John Lenart. “It’s also encouraging to see that our continuing outreach efforts to increase periodontal disease awareness and comprehensive treatment are having a positive effect for clinicians and the patients they treat.”

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Halitosis Detector at Restoration Hardware

Although I don't have any experience with this, at $10.99 it's not like you are taking a big risk with your money.

This bad breath detector indicates 4 levels of mouth odor from good to bad. It is powered by 2 AA batteries and is small and discreet.

I find it funny that you can buy it at Restoration Hardware, but maybe that's just my offbeat sense of humor.

You can buy it here.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

AT&T Wi-Fi Soon Available in Starbucks

For those of you who are AT&T customers that also have work to do while hanging out at Starbucks, here's some good news.

From MSN Money:

AT&T gets another win today. Starbucks is ditching T-Mobile and going with AT&T for its customer Wi-Fi service at 7,000 locations.

People who have a Starbucks prepaid gift card can get two hours of free Wi-Fi per day at Starbucks. Glenn Fleishman confirms that no purchase is needed: You can buy and activate a card for $5, and then get free Wi-Fi from that day forward. Most of AT&T's broadband and U-verse customers will also have free access, but AT&T wireless customers (including iPhone users) won't get the same deal.

Surprisingly, the per-hour Wi-Fi fees will drop under AT&T to $4 for two hours or $20 per month for unlimited access. (T-Mobile used to charge $6 an hour).

The switchover will start this spring and gradually roll out on a city-by-city basis. And fear not, T-Mobile customers: you'll still be able to access Starbucks' Wi-Fi, because Starbucks likes your business too.

So Starbucks keeps customers happy and gets another way to push its prepaid cards. AT&T vastly expands its hotspot network. People will pay less for Wi-Fi access, and T-Mobile customers aren't left out in the cold.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Nationwide Blackberry Service Outage

AT&T says mysterious outage is causing service interruptions to all BlackBerry wireless smart phones across the continent; no word on when it will be fixed.

Yikes, makes me glad I still have my Treo and even more glad I still have Sprint.

Technically Speaking: 3D imaging

Here is an article that I wrote recently for DPR. If you'd like to check out the new DPR website click here.



New cone beam computed tomography promises unparalleled gains in diagnostics, treatment planning.


BY JOHN FLUCKE, DDS

Last October, I sat in a darkened lecture room of a hotel on the Country Club Plaza in my hometown of Kansas City. I was attending a talk at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Oral and Maxillofacial Radiology (AAOMR), and I had one burning desire: I wanted to see what the experts were doing with Cone Beam Computed Tomography (CBCT) and how it would change the way we view diagnostic imaging in dentistry.

As we all know, in the past few years we’ve seen an explosion of dental technology come to the marketplace. It seems that every magazine, every trade show and every lecture has some new device or a program that helps us in some way provide better treatment or run our practices more efficiently. The integration of lots of our clinical technologies is happening at a very rapid pace, and that makes it easier and less stressful to head for the world of chartless dentistry.


Quantum leap

Now, you’re about to see the diagnostic imaging aspect of our profession take a quantum leap forward as more and more of us learn about CBCT.

What is this technology? In a nutshell, it is a single 360-degree scan that utilizes a “cone” of x-rays. These x-rays strike a sensor that also rotates around the patient’s head. The device takes single images at many points as the device rotates. Once the scan has been completed, software takes all of the individual images and combines them into a 3D image.

Once the software has assembled the images, these “slices” become an amazing 3D model of the patient’s hard and soft tissues. What does this mean to the practicing clinician? Imagine being able to pick up an image of the patient’s skull and rotate it 360 degrees in the X, Y, and Z axis! Or imagine being able to rotate a tooth to be able to see it from the occlusal surface and then descend through the tooth all the way to the apex.

Need a diagnostic image of the TMJ? CBCT will give you amazingly accurate images of both the hard and soft tissue elements of the joint.

Extractions

Do you perform third molar extractions? Imagine the confidence you would gain by not only having the information available to you from a standard panoramic radiograph, but also having the ability to see each individual third molar in all three dimensions. You could easily tell where the teeth are located, their proximity to the inferior alveolar canal, the chances of complications, etc. Moreover, you receive all of this information preoperatively.

However, perhaps the best part of the technology is to aid in the treatment planning and placement of implants. The ability to see the area to be treated, as it truly exists, is a great benefit to both the doctor and the patient. Being able to accurately assess the location of the mandibular canal, the sinuses and other important structures can greatly simplify implant choice and placement. It can also help with decreasing the risk of improper placement.

The 3D information can now be sent to companies that will create surgical guides custom built for each patient from the scans. These guides provide accurate depth and diameter for the implants selected by the doctor. This greatly reduces guesswork and simplifies the surgical placement phase of the implant procedure.

CBCT is the next “big thing” in dentistry. I can see a time in the not too distant future when these scans will be routinely used for many dental procedures. I’m currently in the construction phase of a new office and I’ve allowed space in the new facility to accommodate a cone-beam imaging unit.
When you consider the advantages of what all of this information can do to help you and your patients, it’s easy to see why I’m excited about this new dental imaging technology. As the new season of dental trade shows gets underway, make sure you stop by a couple of booths and see one of these amazing devices and what they can do. I guarantee you that you will be amazed at what you’ve been missing.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Dentrix G3 Sneak Peek Party at Chicago MidWinter

Dentrix has announced their DENTRIX G3 Sneak Peek Come Together Party for the Chicago MidWinter Dental Meeting. The party will be Saturday night at 6:00 pm in the Prairie Room at the Hyatt Regency McCormick Conference Center (attached to the McCormick Center).

My contacts at Dentrix promise this will be a rockin' good time, so make sure to put it on your calendars!

Saturday, February 9, 2008

FDA Approves New Liquid Bandage

The FDA has approved a new liquid type bandage that can even be used to handle battle wounds for soldiers in the field.

The product, called "Gelspray Liquid Bandage", is a polymer that is sprayed from a 2 barrel syringe (similar to those used for impressions and cements in dentistry), and as the components mix they become a gel that is applied to the wound.

I'm not sure how well this would stick in the oral environment, but if it does, I can see dental applications for this as well.

The product is manufactured by Biocure.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Cosmedent Announces New Renamel NANO



Renamel NANO from Cosmedent is a breakthrough light-cured nanofill composite that outperforms all other nano materials. This strong material applies quickly and forms to tooth structure with absolutely no slump. Renamel NANO’s excellent handling properties make it easy to sculpt, no matter what the procedure. Its tremendous translucency allows for an unbelievable blend to tooth structure, while retaining the opacity of natural dentition. The material marginates beautifully and polishes to a high luster. Renamel NANO is a true universal that will provide superb results in Class I through Class V restorations: diastema closure, full color change veneers, building up incisal edges, developing canine rise, and all types of esthetic restorations both anterior and posterior. Renamel NANO is also conveniently color-coded to the entire Renamel Restorative System for multi-layer build-up techniques.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Zonet launches inexpensive, stylish storage for PC and Mac users

If you are following my advice and using portable hard drives as your backup solution, these enclosures will allow you to increase capacity simply by changing the drive.

WALNUT, Calif. (February 12, 2008) – Zonet (www.zonetusa.com) a designer and manufacturer of computer peripherals, has announced a product designed to be visually compelling from outside-in and inside-out – the new SATA Enclosures. With estimated pricing between $25 and $35 USD, the SATA Enclosures combine both function and innovative styling to blend seamlessly with the newest sleek PC and Mac desktops, laptops and peripherals that have hit the market. Featuring a resilient, high-impact acrylic case in azure blue or supple leather, the drive enclosures convert any 2.5” or 3.5” SATA hard disk drive into SATA and Hi-Speed USB 2.0 external hard drive by simply connecting the drive to the cables inside the enclosure. Ideal for sharing data between multiple computers or for storing documents, photos and other media files, these bus-powered enclosures (no external AC power needed) are designed to be compact and lightweight – perfect for people who are always on the go! Best of all, every SATA Enclosure supports the XBOX 360 and PS3!

“We wanted to come to market with products that were designed to be easy on the eyes while also offering the very latest chips and components available to the market,” said Jenny Yang, executive manager of Zonet USA. “We wanted to fulfill consumer demand for products that satisfy both form and function. It is for these demanding customers that we expressly designed these SATA drive kit enclosures to offer extra storage without forcing users to crack open their computer case.”

Key Specification by Model:

3.5" USB 2.0 SATA Enclosure (Model: ZNS8010)
- Suitable for 3.5" SATA Hard Drives
- Compliant with USB 2.0 and 1.1 specifications
- Supports up to 1TB HDD
- Data transfer rate of up to 30Mbps
- Supports XBOX 360 and PS3

2.5" USB 2.0 Leather SATA Enclosure (Model: ZNS8021)
- Stylish notebook hard drive design
- Luxury leather coated case
- Data transfer rate of up to 30Mbps
- Suitable for 2.5" SATA Hard Drives
- USB bus powered, no power supply required
- Supports XBOX 360 and PS3

2.5" USB 2.0 One-Touch SATA Enclosure (PC Only) (Model: ZNS8022)
- Suitable for 2.5" Slim Notebook hard drives
- Aluminum design to keep your drive running cool and quiet.
- One-Touch Backup & Restore button to share and copies files automatically
- Data transfer rates of 32Mbps
- Supports up to 250GB SATA hard drives
- Supports XBOX 360 and PS3

2.5" USB 2.0 Mobile SATA Enclosure (PC Only) (Model: ZNS8023)
- Suitable for 2.5” SATA Hard Drives
- Supports USB 2.0 data transfer rate of up to 480Mbps
- Supports up to 250GB SATA hard drives
- One-Touch button design to backup or play back your movie, music, game, program CD/DVD
- Hot-swappable, Plug & Play
- Supports XBOX 360 and PS3

Sales
The SATA Enclosures will begin shipping immediately and will be available through authorized Zonet distributors, resellers and online retailers. For detailed information on availability please visit www.zonetusa.com and check the “Where to Buy” section. Each device comes with a one year manufacturer warranty and will begin shipping immediately.
ABOUT ZONET
Zonet was founded by a group of Ethernet professionals to develop and supply cutting-edge products to the network/connectivity industries. Leveraging our expertise in R&D and manufacturing, Zonet is aggressively developing new and user-friendly products for the ever changing world of connectivity. Our strategic alliances with component suppliers allow us to provide the highest quality products at affordable consumer prices.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Zenith Dental to Introduce LuxaCore Z-Dual at Chicago MidWinter 2008


Englewood, NJ (February 4, 2008) – Zenith Dental, the visionary company with a 25-year tradition of introducing innovative and reliable restorative dental products and exclusive distributor of DMG manufactured products, will officially introduce LuxaCore® Z-Dual, a highly advanced endodontic core material and post cement, during this year’s 143rd Chicago Dental Society Midwinter Meeting at booth #1247.

Distributed exclusively by Zenith Dental, the inclusion of zirconium dioxide and exclusive DMG-patented nano-technology sets LuxaCore Z-Dual apart from any other core material or post cement on the market.

LuxaCore Z-Dual’s superior nano-technology provides for a thorough and even distribution of nano-particles throughout the resin matrix, resulting in the virtual elimination of particle agglomeration (clumping), and making LuxaCore Z-Dual the smoothest, creamiest material on the market. A 20-micron film thickness, and near perfect flow, makes LuxaCore Z-Dual the ideal post cement, and perfect for placing endodontic posts.

Furthermore, at 380 MPa, the addition of zirconium dioxide provides superior compressive strength for improved stability over similar products on the market.

"LuxaCore Z-Dual is the ideal core build up material,” remarked Gary Radz, DDS Cosmetic Dentistry of Colorado. “Its improved compressive strength provides the confidence I want in a material; quality that I depend on to support my restorations. Chairside, I love the fact that the material cuts and feels just like dentin...my crown preparations turn out absolutely beautiful with this material."

Clinical tests confirm that LuxaCore Z is virtually identical to dentin in cuttability. Substance loss testing using 100┬Ám diamond/30 seconds has proven the cutting rate of LuxaCore Z to be entirely within the standard deviation of natural dentin’s cutting rate.

“Improving on LuxaCore Dual, the market-leading core material, was a significant challenge,” remarked George Wolfe, Zenith Dental President. “Advancing its compressive strength, dentin-like cuttability, and shading were no small undertaking, but DMG truly achieved this and, amazingly, surpassed it with LuxaCore Z-Dual.”

The combination of superior physical properties, improved bubble-free formula, void-free flow characteristics, and a dentin-like shade make LuxaCore Z-Dual ideal for all cementing needs.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Apples Announces new iPhones with more Memory

Apple today has announced new iPhones with more memory.

There are still 2 models available, but now they are with 8GB (current) and 16GB of memory. Really this comes as no surprise as most iPhone purchases (90%) were of the 8GB variety.

My take: Apple spoiled us with huge storage on iPods (I have a 60GB iPod video) and then gave us iPhones with dinky memories of 4GB and 8GB. As flash memory drops in price, the drives will continue to increase in size. This is a nice start.

Yahoo Sells its Music Service to Rhapsody

Yahoo has been making headlines recently. First there was the layoffs (1,00 or so) announced last week, then late last week there was the takeover offer from Microsoft, and now Yahoo announces they are selling their music service and subscribers to Rhapsody.

In an attempt to be all things, Yahoo acquired Music Match Jukebox a few years ago. MMJB just happened to be my favorite media player for Windows and I was a bit disheartened to see it swallowed up. Late fall of 2007 I was forced to upgrade to the Yahoo version of MMJB which really wasn't as slick and required all kinds of "Yahoo" kinds of things be installed with it.

Now after doing all that, they are transitioning their customers to Rhapsody. I'm good at archiving old programs. Maybe my old MMJB copy can be reinstalled.

Monday, February 4, 2008

BioCAD to Launch at Chicago MidWinter


I just received this info from my friend Eli Ganon at DTG. I'll report more info as it becomes available:

BioCAD Medical based out of Quebec Canada- To launch at the Mid-Winter in Chicago ImplantCAD the most comprehensive dental CAD/CAM for bars, custom abutments, coping, crown and bridge design and manufacturing.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Can Windows Media Player Slow your Computer Down?

Word has it that the latest version of Windows Media Player (WMP 11.o) has a little problem with file sharing. It seems that if you turn on file sharing and use your machine as a media server, eventually WMP 11.0 will begin to consume more and more of your processor cycles.

What this means is that as your CPU has to handle more and more from WMP 11.0 it has less resources to do the other things you want it to do. If you suddenly notice it's taking longer and longer for programs to open, websites to pop up, etc, this may be the culprit.

So far, the only remedy appears to be turning file sharing off. FYI.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

HPV causing more oral cancer in men

By MIKE STOBBE, AP Medical Writer Fri Feb 1, 7:02 PM ET

ATLANTA - The sexually transmitted virus that causes cervical cancer in women is poised to become one of the leading causes of oral cancer in men, according to a new study.


The HPV virus now causes as many cancers of the upper throat as tobacco and alcohol, probably due both to an increase in oral sex and the decline in smoking, researchers say.

The only available vaccine against HPV, made by Merck & Co. Inc., is currently given only to girls and young women. But Merck plans this year to ask government permission to offer the shot to boys.

Experts say a primary reason for male vaccinations would be to prevent men from spreading the virus and help reduce the nearly 12,000 cases of cervical cancer diagnosed in U.S. women each year. But the new study should add to the argument that there may be a direct benefit for men, too.

"We need to start having a discussion about those cancers other than cervical cancer that may be affected in a positive way by the vaccine," said study co-author Dr. Maura Gillison of Johns Hopkins University.

The study was published Friday in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Human papillomavirus, or HPV, is the leading cause of cervical cancer in women. It also can cause genital warts, penile and anal cancer — risks for males that generally don't get the same attention as cervical cancer.

Previous research by Gillison and others established HPV as a primary cause of the estimated 5,600 cancers that occur each year in the tonsils, lower tongue and upper throat. It's also been known that the virus' role in such cancers has been rising.

The new study looked at more than 30 years of National Cancer Institute data on oral cancers. Researchers categorized about 46,000 cases, using a formula to divide them into those caused by HPV and those not connected to the virus.

They concluded the incidence rates for HPV-related oral cancers rose steadily in men from 1973 to 2004, becoming about as common as those from tobacco and alcohol.

The good news is that survival rates for the cancer are also increasing. That's because tumors caused by HPV respond better to chemotherapy and radiation, Gillison said.

"If current trends continue, within the next 10 years there may be more oral cancers in the United States caused by HPV than tobacco or alcohol," Gillison said.

Studies suggest oral sex is associated with HPV-related oral cancers, but a cause-effect relationship has not been proved. Other researchers have suggested that even unwashed hands can spread it to the mouth as well.

Gillison pointed toward sex as an explanation for the increase in male upper throat cancers. However, HPV-related upper throat cancers declined significantly in women from 1973 to 2004.

Merck's vaccine, approved for girls in 2006, is a three-dose series priced at about $360. It is designed to protect against four types of HPV, including one associated with oral cancer.

Merck has been testing the vaccine in an international study, but it is focused on anal and penile cancer and genital warts, not oral cancers, said Kelley Dougherty, a Merck spokeswoman.

"We are continuing to consider additional areas of study that focus on both female and male HPV diseases and cancers," Dougherty said.

Merck officials praised Gillison's research, saying it will elevate the importance of HPV-related oral cancers.

Government officials and the American Cancer Society say they don't know yet whether Merck's vaccine will be successful at preventing disease in men. No data from the company's study are available yet.

Indeed, it's not clear yet that the vaccine even prevents the HPV infection in males, let alone cancer or any other illness, said Debbie Saslow of the American Cancer Society.

Merck plans to seek U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval for the vaccine in men later this year, meaning a government decision would be likely in 2009.

Domino's Online Pizza Tracker

If your office is like mine, we occasionally work through lunch to accommodate a patient. On those days we frequently will order something to be delivered to the office and grab a bite as time permits. The problem with delivery, of course, is that you never know where your order is in the process.

Domino's to the rescue! This idea, which is bound to catch on with other food delivery services, monitors your order and let's you check its status online. You enter your phone number and the website will tell you where your order is in the creation process (order placed, prep, bake, box and delivery) and it will also tell you when it left the store.

Pretty slick and it will help on those days when we can't wait for the pizza to get here!

Friday, February 1, 2008

New research shows that iPods do not interfere with cardiac pacemakers

From Biomedcentral.com:


A report in the open access journal BioMedical Engineering OnLine refutes claims that portable music players, such as Apple's iPod, interfere with cardiac pacemakers.

Howard Bassen, a researcher with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in Rockville, Md., led a research team that measured the magnetic fields produced by four different iPod models: a fourth-generation iPod and an iPod with video, and an iPod nano and iPod shuffle. They also measured the voltages delivered inside the pacemaker by the magnetic fields from the iPods. All measurements indicated there would be no effects on users with cardiac pacemakers.

Over the past year, a spate of media reports speculated on iPod interference with cardiac pacemakers. These reports, however, were based on a single incident where a patient with a cardiac pacemaker suffered dizziness while using an iPod. Cardiologists operated an iPod during the patient’s examination, and noted interference with the pacemaker.

The cardiologists published their results in the medical journal, Heart Rhythm.

After publication, there was talk of warning labels for portable music and video players, although a subsequent clinical study failed to show any dangerous connection between the music devices and patients with pacemakers.

Now, Bassen’s more detailed study demonstrates that iPods are not capable of producing electromagnetic interference in implanted pacemakers.

Using a 3-coil sensor, the team measured the magnetic field produced by the iPod at a distance of around 5 to 10 millimeters. They obtained readings for the magnetic field at various specific and small regions 10 mm from an iPod. The peak magnetic field strength was 0.2 millionths of a Tesla, a value hundreds of times lower than the levels capable of interfering with a pacemaker.

In addition, Bassen’s team attempted to detect any voltages these fields might produce within the protective "can" of a pacemaker. The can was placed inside a simulated human torso used by pacemaker manufacturers for interference testing. Bassen and his team found that the voltage levels within the pacemaker can were well below the detection limits of their highly sensitive equipment.

"Based on the observations of our in-vitro study we conclude that no interference effects can occur in pacemakers exposed to the iPods we tested," Bassen concluded.