Thursday, December 31, 2009

Palm Releases Latest WebOS Update for Pre & Pixi

Palm webOS 1.3.5 has been released by Palm and is available for download.Users can either download it directly or the network will download it automatically over the next few days.

The launch is initially for Sprint Palm Pre and Palm Pixi customers in the US, but will roll out to other areas shortly.

This update has quite a few improvements and because of this takes a fair amount of time to download and install. Make sure you either have a good charge on the battery or have your device plugged in before selecting "Updates" from the device.

Direct from Palm, here is the lowdown on this latest new version of the operating system:

Version information

  • Version: webOS 1.3.5
  • Release date: 28 December 2009

New applications

NONE

Feature changes to existing applications

App Catalog

  • App Catalog significantly improves the application download experience.
  • A user can now download multiple applications simultaneously.
  • Downloads continue in the background if the user moves away from the download screen.
  • A user can manually pause, resume, and cancel downloads.
  • A user can also download all available updates for the user’s downloaded applications with a single tap.
  • App Catalog automatically resumes downloads in cases where a download was paused because it was interrupted—for example, if a user moves out of network coverage and then moves back into coverage.
  • Users can now take advantage of the full storage capacity of the phone for downloading applications. This gives the user more control over how to allocate the phone’s storage space across applications, music, photos, and other media. Downloaded applications are now stored on the phone’s USB drive.
  • App Catalog lists search results based on an improved search algorithm.
  • Locations from which users can purchase paid apps from App Catalog now include U.S. territories.

Calendar

  • In Day view, switching between days happens more quickly.

Date & Time

  • When the user has network time zone enabled, a city and country are no longer displayed.

Device Info

  • A user can perform a full erase by pressing and holding Sym + the orange/Option key + power for 10 seconds.

Email

  • A user can now edit forwarded text for all email account types.
  • When the user sets up more than one Yahoo! email account, the account names displayed in Account List view include the associated email address so that the user can distinguish them.
  • If an account mailbox is too full to send messages, after the user frees up space in the mailbox on the server, the user can send the messages successfully.
  • The default email signature no longer includes the macron over the “e” in “Pre,” so that the product name shows correctly on a recipient’s phone.

Messaging

  • If a user deletes a conversation with a contact, new conversations with that contact are now correctly displayed in Conversations view.

Screen & Lock

  • When the screen is locked, the time displays in a new font.

Sprint Navigation

  • A user can launch Sprint Navigation from an address in an open contact entry in Contacts.

System

  • Users can now take advantage of the full storage capacity of the phone for downloading applications. This gives the user more control over how to allocate the phone’s storage space across applications, music, photos, and other media. Downloaded applications are now stored on the phone’s USB drive.
  • This update improves battery life in areas of poor wireless network coverage.
  • If the user is working in an application that supports landscape mode (such as Web or Videos), notifications now appear at the bottom of the landscape screen.
  • After a user signs in to an existing Palm profile, applications the user installed from App Catalog are restored in the background. The user can use other features of the phone while the apps are being restored.
  • Swiping to delete a list item that contains a link no longer causes the link to open in the web browser.

Updates

  • After taking the 1.3.5 update, users can download future updates over a 2G (1xRTT 1x title bar icon, GPRS 1x title bar icon, EDGE 1x title bar icon) data connection by opening Updates and tapping Download Now.

Web

  • The web browser now supports the display of animated GIFs.
  • Audio files with a .3g2 extension play correctly as audio files, not video files.

Security

This release includes a security fix to the dev portal. Credit to Kris Siegal for reporting the issue.

Individuals interested in contacting Palm to report suspected security issues can find more information at palm.com/security .

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

A 24 Port USB Hub

I truly doubt anyone reading this routinely connects 24 USB devices, but hey you can't really have too many ports... can you? This powered USB hub actually delivers 24 ports that will not only deliver USB 2.0 speed, but will also charge any of your USB devices since it has AC power. That's a nice feature because sometimes all you want to do is just charge and not necessarily access the device.

The little 24 port wonder can be had for only $69.99 from USBfever. If you are needing some extra ports, this is the gizmo for you!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Powermat Wirelessly Charges Your Devices




Magnetic induction charging has been around for a while now. Most recently it has been seen in the Sprint Touchstone charger for the Palm Pre. However, up until this point the idea has been device specific with a manufacturer creating a charging station for one device at a time.

The concept of magnetic induction charging is a good one. If you've ever charged a powered toothbrush (Sonicare or Oral B) you get the idea. You simply place the device in/on the charger without connecting the cords and the recharge power is delivered to the device wirelessly.

Well, the Powermat has upped the ante on that concept considerably. Imagine coming home with your iPhone or iPod touch which is badly in need of a drink of juice. You just walk in the door, place it on the Powermat, and... PRESTO you're getting a charge. It's just about that simple.

You plug the mat into AC power, place the properly equipped devices on the mat and they charge.

Over the Christmas break I decided to brave the Dante's Inferno of the local Best Buy (I could do a whole blog post on their concept of "how not to run a consumer electronics store", but I digress) to spend some of my gift dollars and gift cards on a Powermat Portable.

The device comes in 2 models which are basically identical except for the fact that the portable has hinges that let it fold up to 1/3 its normal size for easy packing. That seemed a much better choice for me since they are both the same price and I spend so much time on the road. The portable also comes with a sturdy travel case.

Since the device uses magnetic induction, there is an induction component that must be used on the device. This requires either putting a new case/back on the device with an induction component attached (manufactured by Powermat and purchased separately) or plugging your device into a module that sits on the Powermat called the Powercube (one supplied with the device).


The Powercube pictured above, comes with a variety of plugs that attach to your device where the normal power adapter would connect. The white square portion is placed on the Powermat and your device begins charging.

You can charge 3 devices simultaneously, all with one AC connection. The company also claims greater efficiency and less waste of electricity as the three individual areas of the mat shut down independently when the device using them is fully charged.

In my short exposure to the Powermat I've been impressed. There is something to be said for the efficiency of simply setting your device on the mat and knowing it's charging. I also like the "greener" aspect of the charging, although how significant that is, that's harder to tell.

Overall the device performs as advertised, is easy to use, and it looks like it will simplify my charging regimen. Unless something completely unexpected shows up, I can't imagine why this won't become one of those better ideas I just can't do without.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Curve Dental Announces Release of New, Web-based Dental Software

Curve logo.jpg

Curve Hero: A Fresh, Web-based Alternative to Dental Software

In September, I got a chance to spend a few days with the good people at Curve dental. The whole point of my visit was to show myself and some other dental educators, editors, etc what Curve Dental is all about. It was also an opportunity to see and tinker with their signature product Curve Hero.

I came away impressed, both with the company and the product that they are building. I think that Curve Dental is definitely on the right track to building the next generation of dental software. They still have a ways to go to get to the point that power users like myself will have all the functionality they need, but for the majority of practices looking to go digital or if you are a new start-up practice, I think you owe it to yourself to check out Curve Hero. Here is some brand new info from the company.

OREM, UT—Curve Dental, Inc. announced the release of Curve Hero, a new web- based alternative to dental software designed for simple operation, lifestyle flexibility and better business value. In development for more than five years, Curve Hero’s advanced technology is designed only for the web for the contemporary dental practice, providing key features, such as scheduling, billing, clinical and perio charting, reporting, imaging, clinical notes, patient education, and more.

“Curve Hero is a fresh alternative to dental software,” said Matt Dorey, founder of Curve Dental, Inc. “Our primary objective was to take a different approach to dental software, beginning with the web. As a result, Curve Hero is dreamy simple. Doctors and their staff will find that we’ve taken a cleaner, smoother approach to helping them accomplish their tasks and responsibilities in less time and with more efficiency. Curve Hero is an extension of their style of working. Our customers prefer Curve Hero for the same reasons they bank on-line, book a vacation on-line or shop on-line: It’s more convenient and it’s faster—and less expensive.”

As web-based dental software Curve Hero offers advantages over traditional client/server applications with respect to implementation costs, convenience and data security. Because the software only requires a browser and an Internet connection, expensive investments in
hardware, servers and IT services are not required. The convenience of the web allows the practice to access patient data from any location at any time, which is more flexible to varying lifestyle preferences. With patient data stored off-site at redundant and secure data centers, the practice is not threatened by theft, natural disaster or local hardware failure, greatly simplifying business continuity and disaster planning. Further, the practice also benefits by fully complying with all HIPAA or PIPEDA requirements pertaining to data security.

“Data security is substantially improved with web-based software than it is for legacy client-server software,” Dorey said. “Our encryption process meets or exceeds all government standards and our data centers are secured physically. On-line banking, on- line trading, on-line shopping, and on-line travel reservations have shown that doing business on the Internet is safe and much more convenient. A practice can now manage their practice on-line, too, with Curve Hero and not have to worry about data backup or IT assistance.”

Curve Hero’s web-based simplicity and flexibility makes it the perfect choice for dentists looking for an alternative to traditional, legacy client-server software. The seamless work style extension and business value in Curve Hero will help dentists better brand and manage their practices.

About Curve Dental, Inc.
Founded in 2005 Curve Dental provides web-based practice management software and related services to dental practices within the United States and Canada. The company is privately-held, based in the USA in Orem, Utah with offices in Calgary, Canada and Dunedin, New Zealand. Dentists can call 888-910-4376 or visit www.curvedental.com for more information.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

All I Want for Christmas is a ScotteVest



For years (and I *mean* years) I've been a huge fan of products from Scottevest. In the early days of the tech boom, Scott Jordan was looking for a way to carry all his portable devices and keep them connected so that he could use them. What he came up with was nothing short of amazing. He developed a vest with tons of pockets and channels between the pockets to run your wires. Now several years later, Scottevest is a full fledged company with an entire clothing line of jackets, shirts, pants, hats, etc all designed with tons of pockets that allow you to keep all your gear with you.

For those of you who have attended my lectures over the years, some of you (depending on the subject) have actually had a chance to see some of the Scottevest gear I've purchased over the years.

So, you can bet that the Soft Shell Jacket I received for Christmas this year was incredibly well received.

Now let me tell you a quick story about what makes the Scottevest company so unique. Owner Scott Jordan, being geeky like me, is connected on most social networking sites. Well, I tweeted about my Soft Shell Jacket, and in a few minutes I received a personal thank you from Scott as well as a voice mail thanking me for my purchase. Have you ever had that happen before?

Scottevest is a great company with high quality groundbreaking products. If you are looking for some new clothing, you owe it to yourself to check them out! This is a company where every product they make comes with my highest recommendation!!!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas to All!!!

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To all my friends, co-horts, colleagues, and partners in geekiness, I'd like to wish you a most blessed of holiday seasons. To those of you who do not celebrate Christmas, I hope your special holiday brings you joy, cheer, and happiness. My wish is for all of you to have good health for you and your families, good food, and a roof over your heads.

In the big picture, that's all we really need.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Follow Santa Around the World with the NORAD Santa Tracker



Since the 1950's our men and women in uniform who work at NORAD (North American Aerospace Defense Command) have been tracking Santa with their advanced radar as he treks around the world.

Every year, I follow him on the computer and this year you can also track his updates via Twitter and have them sent directly to your mobile phone.

This is a great service... check it out. Santa is already on his journey since it's nighttime in the far east. The site is available in several languages and even has some videos they capture of Santa as he travels around the world.

Merry Christmas to ALL!!!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Barnes & Noble Experiences Delays in Shipping Nook but Offers $100 as Compensation

It seems B&N has been having some trouble meeting the demand for its new Nook e-book reader. Recently the company notified customers that those that had ordered them in time for Christmas may not get them by December 24th. As an apology, B&N has said that users who don't receive their devices will receive a $100 gift card for the inconvenience. That's not a bad deal and shows they are trying to make the best of a bad situation.


Here's what Barnes & Noble spokeswoman Mary Ellen Keating had to say last Saturday:

"The vast majority of customers who pre-ordered nooks and were given a pre-holiday estimated shipping date should receive their devices in time for the holidays. We are working very hard to keep up with the demand and to get all nook orders out the door and to customers on or before Dec. 24. Unfortunately, there may be a very small percentage of customers who may not receive their nooks before the holiday. We communicated with this handful of customers yesterday, offering our sincere apologies and providing them with the following: a nook holiday gift certificate so that they have something to wrap and give if it was bought as a gift as well as a bn.com gift certificate that can be used online. Any customer who has not yet received their device but whose ship date prior to the holidays has changed in anyway was notified yesterday of updated timing."

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

The Greater New York Dental Meeting Surpasses All Goals


I had the honor of speaking at the Greater New York Dental Meeting the Sunday after Thanksgiving. It's a great meeting with the holiday excitement of Manhattan combined with the camaraderie of dental professionals committed to making our profession the best it can be. This year the floor was hopping on Sunday. I did a lecture in a classroom on the show floor and then spent the rest of the day wandering through the exhibits. There was lots of traffic and it seemed lots of products were moving as well.

Today I received the following from the Greater New York Dental Meeting giving some info on the meeting. I was impressed with these numbers.

Total registration was enormous and Dentists appeared in waves to continue to make the Greater New York Dental Meeting the largest and best dental products and technology buying event and educational forum of its kind in the United States. Total registration in 2009 was a record breaking 59,166. While we welcomed 17,710 Dentists in 2008, this year we registered 19,488 of our colleagues, an increase of 10%. International registration grew from 4,889 individuals in 2008 to 5,705 in 2009, a rise of 16%. Attendees traveled from 124 countries. Even in this challenging economy, the organization committee planned an event which proved to be successful for all dental professionals and the entire dental trade.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Kindle Continues to Sell like Hotcakes and Amazon has a Special Deal for Christmas!

The Amazon Kindle was the first really successful ebook reader. There were others that tried, but when the Kindle came along, it was an instant blazing success. There are currently challenges and competition, which is good. Competition keeps companies from getting lax about their product and their customer base.


To that end, most people can no longer get their hands on the Sony readers or the Barnes & Noble Nook. They are sold out all over. So the good folks at Amazon decided to take advantage of the shortage.

Amazon has announced they have a great supply of Kindles and, here's the good part, they are offering a great sale for the Christmas season. You can get a Kindle for $259 and get expedited two day shipping. If you haven't gotten that special gift for someone, this is it. Even if you are a procrastinator, 2 day shipping means you can have it on Christmas eve if you order is this Tuesday. Is that great or what?

Amazon has also announced that the Kindle set a new sales record in November. They have also stated that the Kindle is the number one selling gift on Amazon. So what are you waiting for?

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Advanced Palm Pre Gestures

For you Palm Pre users out there, I found this on the Palm blog and thought it was a great thing to know about. I've had the Pre for about 6 months now and love it (except for the battery life, but at least I can carry a spare). However, I've been so busy I really haven't had the time to research and find all the advanced things you can do. Here are a few tips from Palm I think you'll find useful.


Using your Palm webOS phone is even easier and more fun when you learn a few simple advanced gestures. Here are a few good ones to get you started:

  • Full screen app switching! Go to the Screen & Lock icon, scroll down to Advanced Gestures and turn on Switch Applications. Now you can swap between full screen open apps with a long swipe left or right in the gesture area. No need to go into card view.
  • Open top left and right menus with one swipe. Let's say you want to quickly disable Bluetooth on your phone. Instead of tapping the screen to pull down the menu, just swipe down from the top right corner of your screen. To view the menu in an application, swipe down from the top left corner.
  • Resize cards and card order. Tap and hold a card while in card view to resize the card. Drag cards to change the order.
  • Quickly end a phone call. In card view, throw the Phone app card off the top of the screen to end a call.

Click here to learn more about using gestures.


Saturday, December 19, 2009

DoubleTwist Media Player does it Right!

For the last month or so, I've been experimenting with a media player program called DoubleTwist. I tried it because I was tired of iTunes fighting my access with my Palm Pre. I don't have a ton of music on my Pre, but from time to time I add and change the songs I listen to.


When I first got the Pre, the folks at Palm had written in access to iTunes. Of course Apple was having none of that and quickly updated iTunes to eliminate the access. In a week or so, Palm released an update that once again allowed access and, of course, soon Apple released an update. This went on a few times and I got tired of it.

It's my music!!! I'm not exactly sure when companies started thinking I was renting the tunes and they could tell me what devices I could use and what songs I could play. Can you tell I'm frustrated?

So along came DoubleTwist. The program is a program independent of the big companies. I connected my Palm Pre and guess what? It was recognized immediately and I could just drag and drop songs onto it. It plays all my media files and connects to any USB device you can connect including iPods and iPhones.

Oh, did I mention it's FREE?

If you want to download, go to the website and tell them Flucke sent you.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Still Geeky & Still Green - My Chevy Tahoe Hybrid Experience

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I've had the Tahoe Hybrid for 2 months now and I think I have enough time with it to give some good impressions about the vehicle and the whole "driving to be green" idea in general.

The Tahoe has been an outstanding vehicle. Tons of power (when you need it) due to the 6.2L V8. This is the only Tahoe model that is equipped with this large engine due mainly to the additional weight of the hybrid battery system. Although, one of the really slick parts of the design is that the engine will automatically shut down 4 of the cylinders and go to a V4 whenever it can. It's pretty amazing to be cruising on the highway and watch the instant miles per gallon jump by 10 or so when the V8 kicks over to V4 mode.

The hybrid mode which can use both gas and electric motors is seamless and provides plenty of power while allowing the driver to keep a light foot which helps fuel economy.

At low speeds, if I'm careful with my foot, I can run on battery alone up to about 20 MPH. Needless to say that is a *huge* economy booster.

I'm currently averaging about 21 or 22 on the highway and 20 in the city which is pretty amazing for a vehicle of this size and weight. My previous vehicle, a Dodge Durango, was getting 12 in the city and about 14 highway on a good day.

The amenities are very nice, but as I said in my original post about the Tahoe, I haven't had a new vehicle in quite some time so things that I find amazing have been standard fare for some time. However, OnStar with its live updates of traffic is a great aid. It would be even more so if I lived somewhere with nightmare traffic.

One thing I've noticed since having access to the economy info that the hybrid provides from a couple of screens is how poorly most of us drive when considering fuel economy. Most people tend to put their foot down as the light turns green, accelerate hard, and then have to brake at the next intersection due to a red light. I find that coming off the line slower and easing up to speed is much more fuel efficient and I usually coast up next to the aggressive driver at the next light 15 seconds after they have arrived and slammed on the breaks.

On the highway I see much the same thing. Many drivers fail to watch far ahead and therefore accelerate and break repeatedly when they wouldn't have to if they were really paying attention.

So if you are driving a gas only vehicle, just try driving with a tad less aggression. We'll all breathe easier as a result. As for me? I'm thrilled with being greener. Being geekier is just an added benefit. Got questions on the Tahoe? Just let me know.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Flip MinoHD Camcorder Sale

Here's a really good deal on a fun device that is becoming all the rage. The Flip line of HD digital video cameras are becoming all the rage. They are small, easy to use, connect directly to your computer with a built-in USB connecton, I've had one for about 3 months and love it.


The best part? While supplies last, you can order one from Amazon for only $119.99 If you've been wondering what to get the geek on your list, this will definitely do the trick!

Here are more technical details:

Product Features

  • Holds 60 minutes of HD-quality video (1280 x 720 resolution at 30 frames per second; 16:9 widescreen) on 4 GB of built-in memory
  • Weighs only 3.3 ounces; Super-slim, super-sleek design, fits into your pocket or purse
  • Features one-touch recording and digital zoom
  • Flip-out USB arm plugs directly into your computer to launch built-in FlipShare software
  • FlipShare software lets you save and organize your videos, edit individual clips, make custom movies, email your videos, and upload them

Technical Details

  • Sensor: 2.2 Megapixel
  • Size: 1/4.5" HD CMOS Sensor
  • Image Resolution: 1280 x 720
  • Movie Resolution: 1280 x720
  • Recording Definition: High Definition
  • Storage Media Type: Flash Memory
  • Compressed Format: H.264
  • Movie File Format: MPEG-4 AVC/H.264
  • Optical Zoom: 2.0x
  • LCD Monitor: 1.5 inches
  • Height: 3.94 inches
  • Width: 1.97 inches
  • Depth: 0.63 inch
  • Weight: 3.3 oz.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

LaCie Introduces the Smallest 2.5" Drive - Rikki

LaCie makes some pretty slick products and they also make them look good. Style points count, after all, and your portable backup drive should say something about you. Needless to say, this one screams "sleek and efficient". I'd like to have people say that about me! The new Rikki line gives the portable drive a good dose of supermodel make over.


The drives are USB 2.0 and are powered from the USB BUS so that a power cable is not needed. They come in 250GB, 500GB, and 640GB capacities which sell for $75, $109, and $149 respectively. I'm continually amazed at how the prices of these portable drives continue to fall.

Here is more info:

The Smallest of its Species: LaCie Rikiki
Size does matter--resistance too.


December 15, 2009

  • Ultra compact, high capacity
  • Aluminum exterior for sturdy data protection
  • USB Boost and backup software included
  • Plug & play on Mac® and PC
Today, LaCie introduced the most compact 2.5" hard drive on the market – LaCie Rikiki, in metal. Measuring just a mere 110cm3, its sophisticated form factor holds up to 640GB of media that you won’t mind storing in a pocket or purse.

Encased in brushed, sturdy aluminum, the LaCie Rikiki, which means "tiny" in French, represents a resilient aesthetic that protects your media from everyday blunders and unwelcome fingerprints. Its lightweight design makes it a perfect companion for keeping your digital world close at hand.

"We are part of a generation that wants more from our electronics, but in the smallest form factor possible, and with a competitive price," said Anne-Sophie Marchand, Consumer Product Manager. "With the LaCie Rikiki, we have done just that by fitting high-performance and high-capacity in the palm of your hand, for under $100."

Leveraging the versatile USB 2.0 interface, the LaCie Rikiki is instantly compatible with your PC or Mac. Simply plug it in and you’re ready to store and share your favorite media with high-speed performance. LaCie Rikiki also offers USB Boost software for enhancing speeds up to 33% (Windows® only).

LaCie Rikiki also comes with a simplified software suite – for quick setup and easy-to-use backup management – enabling complete configuration in just a few clicks. The LaCie Rikiki is an all-in-one solution for storage mobility.

Availability
The LaCie Rikiki will be available in 250GB, 500GB, and 640GB capacities through the LaCie Online Store, LaCie Reseller+, and LaCie Corner, starting at the suggested retail price of $74.99 (excluding VAT). For more information, visit www.lacie.com.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Google Releases Chrome Browser for Mac OS

For a few months now I've been using the Google Chrome browser on my Windows machines. I've found it to be efficient and pretty stable. In the Windows world I very rarely use Internet Explorer any more. It's hard to believe that about 10 years ago, IE put Netscape under with it's amazing forward thinking and development.


So, getting back to Chrome, I use it and Firefox on the Windows machine and really haven't found either to be a bad choice. Firefox has been around longer and has lots of add-ons, but Google continues to evolve the Chrome software.

I was happy to see that Google has finally released Google Chrome for the Mac OS. I've never been a big fan of Safari much to the chagrin of my Macophile buddies. So it's been a Firefox world on the Mac for me. However, the lastest update seems to have made Firefox a little less stable for me than in the past.

I installed Chrome on the Mac last night and am making this blog post using it. So far so good. I understand that Google wants to make sure the Windows world is happy since they have a huge market share compared to Mac, but I wish they could have gotten this out earlier.

The interface is clean, slick, and things load quickly. It imported all my Firefox settings so it hasn't really been much of a change at all. After a few weeks I'll report back on my experience.

Monday, December 14, 2009

NIght Vision Camera

Sorry for no posts over the weekend. A combination of a cold and a busy schedule came between the blog and myself.

However, for those of you looking for the perfect gift for the geek on your list, my I present the Night Vision Digital Camera. This baby will record with no light up to 40 feet away. The best part is the price which is $99. It has an onboard memory of 32mb expandable with SD up to 2GB (and that can be a lot of video). It's light at 9.3oz and is powered by 4 AA batteries so there is no reason to worry about running out of juice from a built-in rechargeable.

Interested? It can be purchased from Think Geek.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Lights, Camera, Action!


It's been a busy week for me. On Tuesday and Wednesday I was in Cleveland/Canton, Ohio with Dental Technology Solutions doing a couple of seminars for the Comprehensive Dental Excellence Forum. I returned home to Kansas City Wednesday night.

Today, we're shooting a couple of videos in the office. The video guys from Dental Compare are here and we'll be working pretty much all day. First on the agenda is the training video for Air Techniques Spectra. The Spectra is a visual caries detection system that works using fluorescence technology applied to a photo of the tooth which allows the caries to be seen visually by both doctors and patients. It was approved by the FDA in September.

Soon, when you purchase a Spectra, you'll receive a CD with myself and Jon from Air Techniques taking you through installation, clinical usage, etc. It should really help the new user go from un-boxing to implementation in a very short amount of time.

The second video is for Pentron Clinical Technologies. I'm going to be doing a hands-on demonstration of their FibreKleer posts and their Build-it core material. We'll also be demonstrating their Core Forms core build-up caps that help create proper prep form with a minimal amount of stress.

I'll be taking some photos and posting them to Flickr and/or Twitpic throughout the day.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Samsung Announces Memory Cards that Take a Beating

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When you have data, photos, whatever on a memory card, you expect it to stay there. The last thing you want is to have your important stuff missing when you need it most.

Thanks to Samsung, that's a lot less likely. They have a new generation of SD memory cards that are rugged and can take a beating and still deliver their payload. They are water-proof, shock-proof and magnet-proof, and that means they can take a lot more abuse than any other card. They are not currently available in the US, but my gut tells me it's only a matter of time. Here is the press release:

Samsung memory card features for consumers include:

Water-proof* – Innovative Epoxy Moulding Compound technology helps withstand over 24 hours in sea water.

Shock-proof – Survives high pressure, including the crush of a 1.6-ton automobile.

Magnet-proof – Resists over 13 times the magnetic force of home theater speakers.

Fast & superb data recovery – Free proprietary software assists with up to 3 times faster recovery.

Up to 10 years’ data retention – Capable of storing priceless data for longer without a refresh.

*Not applicable for Samsung Compact Flash Cards.

Samsung Now Offers Consumer Memory Cards

Global leader in memory components links up with Kondor to launch its first branded memory cards – storage designed to ensure that data is safe from everyday hazards

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., the world leader in advanced semiconductor solutions, today announced the general availability of its premium Samsung memory cards for sale to the UK market. The global leader in memory components also announced a partnership with Kondor for the distribution of the premium memory cards to consumers in the UK market. While the local distribution partner will focus on the channel, Samsung is driving the strategy behind consumer marketing, communication and brand management.

“The creation of new premium memory cards under the Samsung brand are a perfect fit for our existing portfolio of consumer products,” commented Rob Haycock Managing Director at Kondor “We believe that the partnership will be a great success for us and our clients”.

“The market for memory cards continues to grow in leaps and bounds as consumers push for added storage in smart phones and other mobile devices,” said Stefanie Summerfield – Head of Business Development, Samsung Semiconductor.

“Our well-established leadership in the digital memory card space provides an ideal footing from which to launch premium memory cards that can match rapidly evolving, high-end premium devices such as smart phones and high-performance digital still cameras,” Stefanie explained. “Our cards also provide consumers with more of the outstanding reliability that they have come to expect from Samsung semiconductor products.”

Today’s consumer electronics market is fast evolving to include more and more multifunctional, content-oriented applications and devices. Samsung already has a strong branded presence in these consumer markets, a presence that will provide a lot of synergy for the new card products.

The NAND flash-memory retail market is estimated to already have reached $12 billion in revenues annually worldwide. As a result of continued dramatic growth in the mobile phone market, digital memory card demand is projected to more than double between 2008 and 2011. According to iSuppli, by 2011 more than 61 percent of mobile phones will include a card slot for additional flash card storage, compared to 51 percent of mobile phones with card slots in 2008.

In previous years, Samsung manufactured “white-label” digital memory cards for a variety of leading electronics companies and memory card companies. The company’s new line, aimed at the discerning consumer, is designed to ensure that valuable data is not lost, Samsung memory cards are shock-resistant, water-resistant and protected from damage caused by magnetic interference.

In addition, Samsung memory cards feature a modern brushed silver metallic design or a natural beige epoxy compound casing, and full compatibility with devices that have memory card slots. Most of the premium Plus memory cards can read data at 17MB/s (megabytes per second), though the CF cards provide read speeds of up to 45MB/s.

Samsung’s new premium “Plus” memory cards, which comply with the Secure Digital class 6 ratings for performance, are available in SD, microSD and Compact Flash (CF) formats with densities of 4-gigabytes (GBs) and 8GBs, with a 16GB density for an SD Plus card.

The new Samsung memory cards are currently available in France, Germany and UK, with other select countries likely to follow at a later date.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Luidia Brings the Whiteboard to the Kindle

eBeam_Kindle.jpg
As I've said before, I love my Amazon Kindle. I find myself reading more and reading a wider variety of info than ever before, simply because I now have access to a huge library of content. Of course the Kindle is a solitary device... until now.

Now, Luidia is bringing a new angle to the idea of the persoanl e-book reader. Luidia is the manufacturer of interactive whiteboards that allow computer presentations to be mocked up with dry erase markers, etc. These types of mock ups can then be saved for later and viewed on desktop and laptop PC's. This type of material is really great for brainstorming sessions or when you're doing a demo of clinical treatment, etc.

Now, Luidia is making it possible to take these marked up images and send them to an Amazon Kindle. This allows an attendee to receive all their notes wirelessly and more importantly *paperlessly* straight to the Kindle.

Imagine attending a lecture where all the custom notes will be sent to your device wirelessly before you leave. That is a serious advantage of digital technology! For the whole story, click here.

Seagate Enters SSD Market with Pulsar LIne

I've been following with great interest the continuing proliferation of SSD's (Solid State Drives) as they continue to make market penetration. In the last year we've seen prices drop while capacities have continued to increase. Now we're seeing another major blip on the timeline as big time player Seagate is announcing their line of SSD's.


Seagate is a major hard drive manufacturer. Their entrance into the market is not a surprise, but it does mean there is now more competition which will bring prices down while capacities continue to increase.

I've been a Seagate fan for several years now and I'm excited to see them make this announcement. Here is the info from the company website.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

IDC Makes 2010 Predictions - Bullish on Apple Tablet

Think tank/research firm IDC has come out with some predictions for 2010. I really like IDC. They have their finger on the pulse of the tech sector and can be counted on for some insightful predictions and recommendations.

What I find really interesting about this years predictions in the following regarding the oft rumored Apple Tablet: "This year, however, we predict that Apple will finally introduce this new device family, which is more of an oversized (8in., 10in.) iPod Touch than a downsized Mac -- and if you look at the developer energy around the iPhone/Touch platform, this should be no surprise at all," IDC claimed. "This prediction is a no-brainer: there's enormous appeal in sizing up the iPhone/Touch for a variety of applications and activities that people already use those devices for but would jump at the chance to have a larger screen -- watching videos/movies, reading books/magazines/newspapers (it would take a big bite from the Kindle), surfing the Web, videophone, and online gaming. Look for Apple's "iPad" by year-end 2010. Oh, and don't be surprised to see Microsoft also announce its own device in this space."

Now, from a user standpoint, I own a Tablet PC and I also own an iPod Touch. If I could have the ease of use and the design forethought of the Touch combined with a "real" computer like the Tablet PC, I'd be an incredibly happy camper. I don't use the Tablet PC as my main portable device, but it's incredibly handy at meetings and seminars where I need to take notes and still have a computer handy.

If Apple can come up with something like that, and not just a bigger Touch, I'd buy one in a heartbeat. While I think a large Touch would be marketable, what I want is computing horsepower in that form factor and not just a bigger screen for a weaker device.

BTW, for those of you old enough to remember, today is the day that John Lennon was assassinated. It's a very sad day for me still...

Monday, December 7, 2009

A New Prosthetic on the Horizon?

Take a look at the lower left of the photo above. The device pictured is a functioning prototype of a prosthetic hand. The device is a project funded by the EU with 3 million dollars put into the project. The device is actually controlled by the thoughts of the person wearing it.

I don't have a lot of info on it at this time, but if this continues to develop, this could help upgrade the quality of life for a lot of disabled people. Check out this video from the AP:


Sunday, December 6, 2009

Cool Lego Mouse

For those of you re-living your childhood or if you're like me, never left it, this is a great way to let your inner child loose while still getting something done in a work environment. This Lego brick mouse is a fully functional mouse that lets you do everything a regular mouse can do and still lets you show the world you refuse to take everything so seriously.

It can be yours for $31.96. It's a USB mouse with left and right buttons as well as scroll wheel.

Interested in one for the holidays? You can order here.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Airplane Seat Back Valet

If you travel on a regular basis you know how tough it can get to be organized while on a flight. Usually your gear is either in the overhead and out of reach or under your seat which requires the flexibility of an Olympic gymnast to retrieve. The Airplane Seat Back Valet solves that problem by giving you a device that lets you keep all the things you need within an arms reach.
It's available from Hammacher Schlemmer for only $39.95.

If you're looking to stay organized while in the air or in your car. This just might be the device you've been looking for. Here's what the website has to say:

This tote attaches to the back of an airline seat and keeps travel necessities organized and close at hand. The bag simply slides over an airline tray table in the upright position and remains open for convenient access, yet will not inhibit normal use of the tray table. The organizer has dedicated storage for an airline ticket, passport, water bottle, an iPod, and memory cards. Three zippered pockets accommodate newspapers, magazines, a netbook, and maps, while a hidden compartment with six credit card slots keeps money out of sight. When not in use, the organizer folds in half to form a convenient bag you can tote with the included shoulder strap or integrated handles. Can also fasten to an automobile headrest or be hung on a baby stroller. Made from durable, water-resistant microfiber. Open: 11 3/4" H x 19 1/4" W; Closed: 11 3/4" H x 8" W. (1 lb.)

Friday, December 4, 2009

AT&T and Verizon Drop Lawsuits Against Each Other - Let the Ads Begin

A couple of weeks ago I wrote that Verizon was running ads that stated "there's a map for that" which outlined how much more coverage the company has than competitor AT&T. Obviously that didn't set well with the iPhone king and they quickly filed suit against Verizon to stop the ads from airing or being printed, etc.

Not to be outdone, Verizon than fired off a lawsuit against AT&T. The Verizon ad was clearly a shot at the iPhone and the fact that it's only available from AT&T. Verizon who, of course, touts it's coverage in most of it's commercials and print ads is trying to sway customers with the "we have a better network" instead of "we have a better phone".

So now the "there's a map for that" advertising campaign will commence. I'm curious to see if it really has an impact. I'd love to hear your opinions on this little spat.

The article from PC World with all the specifics, is here.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Fighting Oral Cancer

Oral cancer is a terrible and debilitating disease. There are about 30,000 cases diagnosed each year and the 5 year survival rate has been basically unchanged since the 1960's. It's a disease that those of us in dentistry screen for constantly. It's also the reason that advanced screening devices have come to market.

In my office we're currently using the Trimara Identafi Ultra on our recare exams.

However now there is a new epidemiological twist to the oral cancer statistics. It seems the disease is increasing in its incidence in younger patients (teens-30). The thought process is that it is related to the human papilloma virus. There was an interesting article on the CNN website this week that discussed why younger women are the fastest growing group of suffers.

Read the article here.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Lexi for Palm Pre Coming in the Next Few Days

I have it direct from the source, Lexi-comp. If you are a Palm Pre owner (like me) you'll soon be able to get the Pre version of the Lexi software. No more having to use a web browser to access drug info (which can be a bit cumbersome on your phone). Simply tapping the Lexi icon will bring up the fully functional software.

To the best of my knowledge, this is the first drug database software available for the Pre. If you are currently looking for a drug app and a Pre user, you should definitely check this out.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

12 Cyber Scams - Good Advice for the Holidays and Always

The folks at FoxNews have a nice article on ways to help guard your identity, bank accounts, and cash while dealing in the online world. There' always the risk of fraud... both online and in the real world (you hand you credit cards to lots of individuals in a single week), but the holidays are especially a risky time. Scammers work on your "goodwill toward men" attitude to try and get what's not theirs.

This article lists things you need to be aware of. It was written with help from McAffee and is a good thing to read to ensure you don't fall prey to any of these situations.

Read the article here.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Fireworks on the Ceiling?

I saw this and thought to myself, there are some dental applications for this thing...


What we have here is a device made by Sega that actually projects exploding fireworks on a wall or ceiling. It even comes complete with the sound effects, although for what I envision, I'd turn them off. The projector is around $200 so it's not completely outrageous as far a price goes.

Here's my dental application. I can see something like this as a nice distraction and patient entertainment. Imagine keeping kids distracted in a pediatric setting or giving someone a nice relaxing view while they are immobilized for an hour or so with in office bleaching.

If you don't have over the patient monitors, you could place this on the floor of the treatment area and create your own show. They are not currently available in the U.S., but I'd keep my eyes peeled for it. It could be a great way to set your office apart.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Enjoy the Weekend

Some things in life are more important. I'm taking the rest of the weekend off for family and other things. I'll be back to delivering tech news and notes on Monday.

Please make sure to hug those around you and appreciate all that you have been given. The curse of mortal man is to not appreciate the present.

Have a great weekend and I'll see you all on Monday!

Friday, November 27, 2009

iTivo - You CAN Take it With You



I'm a raving Tivo fan. Not just a fan of the DVR in general, although any DVR is better than none at all, but I'm especially fanatical about my Tivo. It does things other DVRs don't and it has completely changed the way the Flucke's watch TV. Rarely do we watch anything live other than sports. Everything else is time shifted for our convenience. However, the one drawback to DVRs is that you have to be in front of the TV to watch. Now there are some hardware options that will stream from your home to wherever you are, but they can set you back a few dollars and there are still occasional snags such as cabling, etc.

Imagine my delight when I came across the open source program iTivo. It's a Mac program that allows you to access your Tivo with your Mac and download the programs to your computer. Not only that, but it formats them for your preferred device and then drops them into iTunes.

What this means is that I can grab a show I want to see, automatically add it to iTunes, synch my Video iPod, and then watch it wherever I am. How cool is that? The best thing is, the program is 100% free.

I'm downloading 2 shows while I write this post. The software is very intuitive and easy to setup and use. This is highly recommended.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

What I'm Thankful For

At times like this it's great to think of all the wonderful blessings and gifts I'm thankful for.

Faith, family, employee, patients, friends, relationships, baseball on warm summer days, technology, and a nutty labrador retriever are just a few of the things that make my life special.

Thanks too, to all of you who read the blog and e-mail.

I hope you all have a blessed day!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

OralDNA Labs Introduces Two Salivary DNA Tests to Support Dentists’ Fight Against Periodontal Disease

DNA analysis is changing lots of things. From genetic screening to police forensics, DNA is a buzz term. Now there's a way for DNA to help dental professionals help their patients. Read on!


Molecular DNA Tests Positioning Dental Professionals at the Forefront of Oral Medicine - Company Planning the Launch of HPV/Oral Cancer DNA Test in 2010

Nashville, TN – November 16, 2009 – OralDNA Labs™ Inc. (www.OralDNA.com), 
a specialty diagnostics subsidiary of Quest Diagnostics® Incorporated (NYSE: DGX) focused on bringing advanced laboratory testing to the dental community, today announced the availability of two revolutionary molecular tests to help periodontists and general dentists identify patients with and at risk for periodontal disease. MyPerioPathsm detects the presence and quantity of specific bacteria associated with periodontal disease, while MyPerioIDsm PST®, which the company licenses from Interleukin Genetics, provides a means of quickly and accurately1 assessing an individual’s genetic risk for periodontal disease.

Used together, the new salivary DNA diagnostic tests can help dental professionals reduce patient incidence of periodontal disease. MyPerioPathsm provides early and accurate1 diagnosis of existing periodontal disease by identifying and measuring specific types of bacteria, while MyPerioIDsm PST® assesses a patient’s genetic predisposition to developing periodontal disease well before physical symptoms occur. The company has launched a national dental industry awareness and training program to support the profession’s understanding and effective use of the new tools.

According to OralDNA Inc. senior vice president and general manager Robert Walker,
the company has been introducing the tests to leading dental industry practitioners
during the past year. “Leading periodontists and general dentists are already relying 
on the MyPerioPathsm and MyPerioIDsm PST® salivary diagnostic tests to provide valuable insights for enhanced patient care, and as important tools in the fight against periodontal disease. We believe these tests will not only help put dental professionals at the forefront of oral medicine, but also enable them to provide more comprehensive and accurate treatment plans for their patients.”

According to the American Dental Association, an estimated 75% of all Americans over the age of 35 have some form of periodontal disease2 and research conducted during the past 10 years has provided insight into the Perio / Systemic Connection and the link between chronic periodontal infections and heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and some forms of cancer.3,4

Within the next year, OralDNA expects to add the clinician-administered oral DNA HPV test, OraRisksm HPV, for use in assessing the risks associated with certain types of oral cancer, and intends to continue to broaden its menu of salivary diagnostic tests for use in oral medicine.

For more information, education, and training related to OralDNA’s salivary DNA diagnostic tests, dental professionals, including periodontists, general dentists, and dental hygienists, should visit www.OralDNAtraining.com or call (877) 577-9055.

About OralDNA Labs™ Inc. (www.OralDNA.com)
OralDNA Labs Inc., a subsidiary of Quest Diagnostics Incorporated (NYSE: DGX), is a specialty diagnostics company created to advance clinical testing in the dental community. The company’s goal is to help the dental profession achieve better clinical outcomes by providing reliable, definitive, and cost-effective clinical tests that drive the detection and prognosis of disease at an earlier, more treatable stage, with an initial focus on periodontal disease. OralDNA offers two DNA-Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) tests for periodontal disease diagnosis and genetic susceptibility: MyPerioPath detects the presence and quantity of specific bacteria associated with periodontal disease, while MyPerioIDsm PST®, which is licensed through a marketing, sales, and distribution agreement with Interleukin Genetics, provides a means of assessing an individual’s genetic risk for periodontal disease. The company has also developed an oral HPV test named OraRisksm HPV for use in assessing the risks associated with certain types of oral cancer.

About Quest Diagnostics®
Quest Diagnostics is the world's leading provider of diagnostic testing, information, and services that patients and clinicians need to make better healthcare decisions. The company offers the broadest access to diagnostic testing services through its network of laboratories and patient service centers, and provides interpretive consultation through its extensive medical and scientific staff. Quest Diagnostics is a pioneer in developing innovative new diagnostic tests and advanced healthcare information technology solutions that help improve patient care. Additional company information is available at www.QuestDiagnostics.com.

REFERENCES:
1. Data on file, OralDNA Labs Inc.
2. Genco R, Offenbacher S, Beck J. Periodontal disease and cardiovascular disease: epidemiology and possible mechanisms. JADA 2002;133(Suppl.):14S-22S.
3. Friedewald VE, Kornman KS, Beck JD, et al. The American Journal of Cardiology and Journal of Periodontology editors’ consensus: periodontitis and atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. J Periodontol 2009;80:1021-1032.
4. Van Dyke TE. The management of inflammation in periodontal disease. J Periodontol 2008;79:1601-1608.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

TI revolutionizes design of wireless networking applications with eZ430-Chronos,


Every once in a while I stumble across a product that is so geeky, I just can't resist posting about it. The eZ-430 is one of those products. It's only $49 and is a sports watch with a heart rate monitor, but that is just the tip of the iceberg. It's also a developer's kit for wireless! Read on for all the details:

$49 CC430 MCU development kit propels innovation through portability, leading integration, software support and ultra-low power consumption

DALLAS, Nov. 23 /PRNewswire/ -- Representing a new era in development, Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) (NYSE: TXN) today announced the eZ430-Chronos, the world's first customizable development environment within a sports watch. Taking the popular line of eZ430(TM) development tools to the next level, the kit allows developers to easily harness the leading integration, ultra-low power and wireless capabilities of TI's CC430 microcontroller (MCU). Priced at $49, Chronos is designed to provide customers with all of the hardware and software needed to immediately begin development of wireless networking applications, regardless of programming expertise. It is equipped with sensors for measurement and motion-based control and can serve as a central hub for nearby wireless sensors so that users have remote access to real-time data from devices such as pedometers and heart rate monitors. Additionally, Chronos includes a USB-RF access point for wireless set-up and PC connectivity, as well as multiple production-ready open source projects to foster easy evaluation, design and community collaboration. For more information, please visit www.ti.com/chronos-pr.

Key features and benefits of the eZ430-Chronos

  • Wearable form factor allows customers to conveniently develop in remote locations
  • TI's SimpliciTI and BM Innovations' Blue Robin(TM) RF protocols enable developers to easily establish wireless links regardless of RF knowledge, right out of the box
  • Available in three different RF frequency bands - 915, 868, and 433 MHz - allowing for worldwide usage
  • Integrated 3-axis accelerometer for motion sensitive control as well as sensors for measurement, including altimeter, temperature and battery voltage
  • Internal CC430 memory available for data storage, holding up to 11 hours of data such as heart rate
  • eZ430 emulator for simplified programming and debugging on top of base software framework and RF functions
  • USB-RF access point for PC communication and automation, supported by production-ready source projects, including, but not limited to, motion-based mouse control, sensor data logging with wireless PC download, keyboard and presentation control as well as time and calendar sync
  • Large 96 segment LCD display driven directly by CC430
  • Low cost system includes all supporting hardware and software, increasing accessibility and reducing development cost

Monday, November 23, 2009

Imation Now Selling Wireless USB Hard Drive


This is one of the coolest things I've come across lately that can be useful for any high tech office/individual. The device pictured above is a wireless hard drive that only communicates to the USB dongle attached to the computer. Your computer sees the drive, but no one else with wireless capability can, so it's similar to having a USB drive wired to your computer.

It's also fast with a transfer speed of 15MBs/second! The price isn't bad either. The 1.5Tb drive is $449.99. Here is all the info from Imiation:

Built on Imation’s award-winning platform of external hard drive products, the Imation Pro WX drive is the world’s first Wireless USB external hard drive. Offering the convenience of fast data transfer rates, speed and capacity required in today’s graphics and data intensive environments, the Imation Pro WX hard drive provides 1.5TB of storage capacity to backup your important files, gain additional storage space, and experience the convenience of wireless products.

With a fast Wireless USB data transfer rate of up to 15MBs/second, you can back up a typical CD in under fifty seconds, and store up to 300,000 of your photos or 750 hours of video. Inherent in its Wireless USB technology, the Pro WX Wireless hard drive offers an innovative one-to-one connection that limits the possibility of signal interception and securely backs up data whenever it is in range up to 30 feet, similar to a direct attached storage device.

The Imation Pro WX Wireless USB hard drive comes complete with an integrated stand for vertical or horizontal orientation; low capacity/data activity indicator lights for easy identification of data processes with built-in sleep mode for energy conservation; and one-touch, backup sync buttons for easy-to-use automatic backup of your important data, photos, music and videos.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Grey Market Sales Taken on by GC

The grey market for dental products has been a growing problem for several years. Dealers or individuals find product that should be sold in other areas and sell it where they shouldn't. This can lead to expired products being used and a host of other problems as detailed by my friend the Dental Insider. Now GC is doing something about it:

Alsip, Illinois-based GC America is the exclusive licensee of Trademark Holdings of Illinois in connection with a variety of well-known brands including MI Paste, KALORE, GC FUJI, EXAFAST and many others. Using the Tariff Act, a federal statute designed to prevent the unauthorized importation, distribution and dealing in products bearing U.S. trademark registrations, Trademark Holdings of Illinois brought suit against AR Dental in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York, and King's Two Dental Supply in the United States District Court for the Central District of California. In each case, the defendant entered into a consent judgment enjoining its sale, distribution or importation of unauthorized GC products.

“Trademark Holdings of Illinois has performed a great service,” said John O'Neill, Vice President - Sales of GC America. “These suits have demonstrated that these actions are wrong, and that the illegal importation of GC branded products can be stopped.”

GC America Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of GC Corporation, is a worldwide market leader in the manufacture and sale of dental materials and supplies. The company, based in Alsip, Illinois, sells a number of well-known products in the dental marketplace, including items sold under the trademarks GC FUJICEM, GC FUJI PLUS, GC FUJI IX EXTRA, GC FUJI II LC, KALORE, EXA’LENCE, G-CEM, GC FUJI ORTHO, EXAMIX, EXAFAST, EXAFLEX, GC FUJI I, GC FUJI II, GC FUJI LINING, MIRACLE MIX and many others.

Trademark Holdings of Illinois, LLC is based in Naperville, Illinois.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Red Box iPhone App Saves Money - With a Single Click

If you are a video renter (and who isn't these days?) and you use or are thinking about using Red Box, here is a great idea. From what I understand, it works on the iPod Touch as well. Just check the codes on a Wifi connection before going to rent. Check it out!

PHOENIX (November 23, 2009) – Neese Products (www.neeseproducts.com), creators of tools and products that improve everyday household life, today launched their newest innovation, a handy iPhone application (app) that serves up money-saving promo codes for the popular Redbox video rental self-service kiosks found nationwide. Priced at just 99 cents, the easy-to-use app provides the latest promo codes for obtaining free DVD rentals at participating kiosks. Codes are updated twice daily and also feature a ranking system to ensure the validity and usefulness of each promo offered. The app allows users to quickly rate the successful use of each code, further improving the quality of those offered. This app pays for itself after one successful use.

How it Works
Consumers simply launch the application or update/refresh the codes before leaving to rent a movie and they will be presented with the latest collection of ranked promotion codes for free DVD rentals at Redbox self-service kiosks. After selecting a movie, click “Enter Promo Code” on the Redbox checkout screen and enter one of the promo codes provided by the app. The Redbox will confirm the FREE rental before you finish.

Where to Get it
The Neese Products app can be found in the iTunes store by searching for keyword “red box free rental promo codes” or “Neese products”.

Users can also find it directly with the following link:
http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/red-box-free-rental-promo-codes/id339521804?mt=8


About Neese Products
Neese Products LLC was founded to create new and innovative products that solve everyday household problems. The company’s first product, QuickSeals®, was born from a common vacation dilemma—how to salvage all of those half-started snacks and other food items instead of throwing them out. Today, this problem is solved with QuickSeals® which transforms any opened food, bag or box into a zip-sealed container. The patented product is being manufactured for sale and distribution in the US with international distribution to follow. Other Neese Products include Sha-Co!, a learning tool to teach children shapes and colors, as well as a host of other products currently in development. For more information on Neese Products, visit the company Web site at www.NeeseProducts.com or call 800-705-4000.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Curious about Google's Chrome OS?


For a while now there has been speculation and a fair amount of discussion of Google Chrome the Operating System. Google released its Chrome browser earlier in the year, but the Chrome OS has continued be worked on under cover with some select folks being given access to use/evaluate it. Now we're finally beginning to see what Google is thinking about., although they say Chrome won't be available for a year. When it does arrive, at this point, it looks like it will be loaded on netbooks at first. However, Google is asking the hardware providers to make netbooks bigger with full sized keyboards.

The idea of Chrome is an interesting one. A lot of our computing is now done "in the cloud" which means over the Internet itself. Lots of people have gmail, hotmail, yahoo mail, or others where the e-mail is never downloaded to your computer but simply used off of the providing server. Applications like Google Docs give access to word processing, spreadsheets, etc while storing all of the files online.

Take a look at these 2 videos and let me know your opinions. I've been pretty web centric for a while now. I've done it by using some applications like Evernote, Sugarsync, Lexi-comp, and others that keep my data in the cloud where I can access it from anywhere. So, to me this Google idea makes a lot of sense, but I'm really interested in what you, the reader, thinks.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

YouMail Now OFFICIALLY Free for Sprint Users

OK, it's been a week or so, but now YouMail is free for Sprint users (like me). Woo-hoo!!!

The conditional call forwarding has been done away with. Here are all the details from YouMail:


It’s official! Sprint conditional call forwarding is now free of charge. Sprint customers can now utilize YouMail without incurring the previous $.20/minute for conditional call forwarding – normal airtime applies. Or in other words – for free.
If you’re new to YouMail, simply sign up for YouMail at www.youmail.com. Once you have a YouMail account, you can activate YouMail by dialing *289095106169 and pressing ‘Send” from your Sprint phone. This causes your busy and unanswered calls to be forwarded to YouMail instead of your old Sprint voicemail (this is the “conditional call forwarding” part)..

Existing YouMail customers with Sprint conditional call forwarding are not required to take any action at this time as the Sprint changes are automatic.

Sprint customers with a BlackBerry or the new HTC Hero can experience YouMail with our great, FREE phone apps . You can download the YouMail Visual Voicemail app from the Android Market or BlackBerry App World.

Note that unconditional (immediate) call forwarding (set up using *72) still incurs a $.20/min fee – but this doesn’t affect users using conditional call forwarding to replace Sprint voicemail with YouMail.

Thanks,

The YouMail Team

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Kerr Expands Tissue Management Line with Hemostasyl

When you're doing cosmetic dentistry, your enemy is contamination. Keeping the field dry and free or any contaminants, biological or otherwise, should be a primary concern. To that end Kerr has released Hemostasyl. A product designed to provide hemostasis with no discoloration that will affect shading in the aesthetic zone. Read on for all the details:


ORANGE, CA – October 15, 2009 – Kerr introduces the latest innovation in tissue management, HemostasylTM—a highly efficient hemostatic agent that stops bleeding with precision and ease. When moderate bleeding occurs and gingival retraction is not required, Hemostasyl is an ideal choice. This product is exceptionally easy to place, and less material is required compared to other similar hemostatic agents on the market.
Product Manager James Lobsenz said, “With Hemostasyl, doctors now have a material that is incredibly easy to dispense using a convenient syringe delivery and a viscosity that stays in place and controls blood and other fluids well.”
Hemostasyl is brightly colored, so it is easy to see and clean up, and its composition helps adhere to soft and hard tissue with ease, making placement a breeze. With a concentration of 15% aluminum chloride, this material is an effective way to stop bleeding in many clinical applications such as Class V composite placement, cementation, and scaling in perio cases. Compromising esthetics of the procedure is not a worry—Hemostasyl contains no ferric sulfate, unlike similar products on the market, which can stain proteins a black color, including soft tissue and dentin.
For gingival retraction needs, the Kerr Tissue Management line also offers ExpasylTM, an atraumatic gingival retraction paste, now in a pleasant new strawberry taste.
To learn more about Hemostasyl or our broad portfolio of products, visit kerrdental.com/hemostasyl or call 800.KERR.123. To find out more about continuing education online and free CE credit, visit Kerr University at kerrdental.com/education for upcoming live webcasts, on-demand video, and the latest CE articles.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

A Pair of Holiday Ideas from Epocrates

The good folks at Epocrates have put together 2 offers for those on your healthcare "nice" list.

The first is a brand spanking new handheld with a whole bunch of types to choose from. Epocrates and pdaMD have partnered to offer a way that you can get a new state of the art device and have it come fully loaded with Epocrates software. Here are all the details.

The second offer is for those in group practices that would like to offer Epocrates to anyone who wants it. Discoutns are available on Epocrates premium products for hospitals, schools, residency programs, medical groups, and government agencies. Your group can even save up to an additional 10% when you mention the Epocrates Holiday promotion through December 15! Here are all the details.

As far as those who are on your "naughty" list, might I suggest a nice, thick, heavy, out of date... book.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Cardiac Science Voluntary AED Medical Device Correction

Courtesy of IMEP (Institute of Medical Emergency Prepardeness)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE -- Bothell, WA – November 13, 2009 – Cardiac Science Corporation [NASDAQ: CSCX] is initiating a voluntary field correction after it was determined certain automated external defibrillators (AEDs) may experience a rare product issue in which the AED may not be able to deliver therapy during a resuscitation attempt. Device failure may affect resuscitation of the patient, which could lead to serious adverse events or death. These AEDs have electronic components which may fail and the failure may not be detected by the device's periodic self-tests. The affected models include the Powerheart 9300A, 9300C, 9300D, 9300E, 9300P, 9390A, 9390E, and CardioVive 92531, 92532, and 92533 devices.

Cardiac Science has received a total of 64 complaints concerning four resistors within certain AEDs. Two of these complaints were associated with a failure to deliver therapy. This issue is predicted to occur in approximately one in 75,000 AEDs manufactured between August 2003 and August 2009. The company has also received 114 complaints regarding "Service Required" messages resulting from a specific relay switch failure. There have been no reported instances where this issue has resulted in an inability to deliver therapy.

Until a correction is available in May, 2010, the company strongly advises customers to check the status indicator on the front of the AED and follow the procedures documented in the materials accompanying the AED. The company advises that customers leave their AEDs in service.

"When customers choose a product from Cardiac Science, they expect outstanding reliability," said Dave Marver, president and chief executive officer. "We understand the role our products play in public health and are taking appropriate measures to further improve the performance of our products."

The company has implemented more stringent testing of the components and all AEDs produced since August, 2009 are unaffected. Customers in possession of an AED that may exhibit either of these issues will be notified immediately. A software update to address the resistor issue will be available by May, 2010. This software update will enhance the AED's self-test capabilities and improve detection of the issue. In the interim, the company advises customers to keep their AEDs in service and follow the normal testing and maintenance procedures found in the Operator and Service Manual. A copy of these procedures is available at www.cardiacscience.com/AED175. At this site, customers may confirm if their AED is affected and register for automatic e-mail reminders to conduct scheduled maintenance.

If the AED is not rescue ready (the indicator is red) customers should contact the company immediately at 425.402.2000 (option 1) within the United States. Outside the US contact +44.161.926.0011 or the local Cardiac Science representative. Customers can also email the company at AED175@cardiacscience.com.

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements. The word "believe," "expect," "intend," "anticipate," variations of such words, and similar expressions identify forward-looking statements, but their absence does not mean that the statement is not forward-looking. Forward looking statements in this press release include, but are not limited to, predictions of AED component failure rates, the availability of software updates to improve detection of the component issue, and the effectiveness of the planned software update. These are forward-looking statements for purposes of the safe harbor provisions under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Actual results and performance may vary significantly from those expressed or implied in such statements. Factors that could cause or contribute to such varying results and other risks are more fully described in the Annual Report on Form 10-K filed by Cardiac Science Corporation for the year ended December 31, 2008, as updated by subsequent quarterly reports on Form 10-Q. Cardiac Science Corporation undertakes no duty or obligation to update the information provided herein.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

18 Buttons on the Open Office Mouse - We Can Learn From This

The picture above has not been photoshopped. This is an 18 button mouse. That's right eighteen buttons!!! Now besides the fact that it's funny, let's take a look at this from another angle. Hopefully I can help developers learn something from this.


It's a frequent occurrence in technology that it would be "really cool if our product did..."

However, you have have to stop and think of "why is it a good idea" and "who would use this new idea". I frequently see or advise on products that have what the developers/engineers think are good ideas, but unfortunately they are the only ones who think that way.

It's important to design with the end in mind. In dentistry, we're trained to envision the end process and then work toward that goal. I've seen devices and software (like the mouse here) that are made incredibly complicated to use because developers thought that having every option available would be good thing.

Keep in mind that most users only use 20% of features in a given program! It's much more important to provide a quality experience than to provide an avalanche of features. Sometimes less really is more.

In a very short amount of time, the mouse above will be in bargain bins and then a few years from now it will be in some article with the "remember when" slant. I don't care that the buttons are fully programmable; this is a bad product no matter how much lipstick you put on it.