Monday, April 30, 2012

Google Drive - Initial Impressions

Google Drive.jpg
 
Last week I was lucky enough to get a Google Drive account.  It's not like people didn't know it was coming.  Heck, Google Drive was probably one of the worst kept tech secrets in quite some time.  Apple would've flipped had something like this leaked so precipitously before launch.
 
But be that as it may, Google Drive is here and I was one of the lucky ones to grab an account early.  It was just dumb luck on my part, but hey, Babe Ruth once said, "I'd rather be lucky than good."  That certainly applies to me.
 
Now I haven't had tons of time to work with it yet.  I was just in Minneapolis at The Star of the North dental meeting last week, but I have had a little time to play with it and here are my initial thoughts.
 
Google Drive is designed to take the place of Google Docs, long term.  So… if you've ever used Google Docs, the interface is going to look familiar to you.  In fact, once you have a Google Drive account, typing in the address for Google Docs takes you to your Drive.  It's that simple.
 
You start out with a base of 5GB, which is the same storage you get with iCloud.  Coincidence?  I think not.  However, if you need more storage, it's available for a price.
 
When I went to my Google Drive page it suggested I download Google Drive for Mac.  I agreed and the program created a Google Drive folder on my Mac that is kept in sync with the Cloud and any other device with a Google Drive folder.  Now your Docs and other files are available on AND off-line.  Make changes in one place and they are synced everywhere.  Slick!
 
I'm currently using Sugarsync which now might be considered a competing product.  However, if Google Drive continues to operate as well as it has, I may go to Drive exclusively.  Google already has my music stored via Google Play and they are doing that for free.  I kind of like the idea of one place for everything.  My big curiosity is how Apple responds when an iOS version of this shows up...
 
Overall, Google Drive is working well and I'm happy with it.  Happy enough that I may pony up the cash for more storage.  That alone speaks volumes of what I think about the service...
 

Sunday, April 29, 2012

iPad 3 Initial Impressions

iPad 3a.jpg
 
If you're a regular reader, then you know I was lucky enough to get an iPad 3 the second week in April.
 
While I haven't had just tons of time to use it, I *have* had enough time to give you my overall impressions of Apple's latest and greatest tablet device.
 
  • Battery LIfe:  Outstanding, but that is not something that surprised me.  This thing can go pretty much all day and part of a second before needing a charge.
  • Speed: While the original iPad (which I own, but did not buy a 2) really wasn't a slouch when it came to processor speed, the iPad 3 is faster by an obvious margin.
  • Camera: Any camera in a portable device is not something that will equal a "real" camera at this point in time, but the convenience of having one in a tablet is huge.  Add to that the ability to shoot HD video, and thats make it better.  The camera still tends to shoot like a cell phone type camera, but I love having it in the tablet.
  • Size: They just keep making these things thinner… but then every time I get one, I encase it in a rugged and thick protective box.  Obviously for me, the size isn't as important as protecting my investment…
  • Sound: About as good as you can expect from tiny speakers.  If you really want great sound though, plug it into some Bose speakers designed for a laptop.
  • iCloud: This is getting better & better.  I still think Android is doing the whole Cloud thing better, but Apple is moving in the right direction.
  • Screen: This is really the most incredible part.  The screen is just amazing.  Viewing high res photos on it is something you really do have to experience to appreciate.
  • Apps: Apple has always owned the App world, and they continue to do so.  I am just blown away by the graphics on the apps and what they can do.  There are definitely pluses and minuses to Apple's "closed system" but one of the big pluses can be seen by looking at their Apps versus everyone else's.

Overall, the iPad experience just keeps getting better.  Unless I'm giving a lecture, I rarely carry my MacBook Pro with my anymore.  I can do so much with the iPad 3.  It just keeps getting better.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Demand Force Acquired by Intuit for $423 Million

Demand Force Logo.png
 
Well, this may shake things up a bit in the world of dental communications!
 
On Friday afternoon I got a text message from someone "in the know" who wished to remain anonymous telling me that patient communication powerhouse Demand Force had been acquired by Intui for $423 million.
 
Demand Force is a company that allows dentists to stay in constant contact with their customers.  This is done through emails, text messages, surveys, etc.  This type of communication in dentistry has really exploded in the last 5 years and, in my opinion, will only continue to do so.
 
What follows is, first, a description of Demand Force from their website, then the press release providing info on the acquisition by Intuit.
 
First the Demand Force corporate description:
 

Founded in 2003 by Rick Berry, who was soon joined by Sam Osman, Demandforce’s mission is to help small businesses thrive in an evolving and increasingly complex connected world.

Demandforce bundles the marketing and communications tools that any business needs to succeed with customers today into one powerful web-based application that seamlessly integrates with existing workflow systems, works automatically, and delivers guaranteed results. We provide small local businesses--like salons, auto shops, chiropractors, dentists, and veterinarians--with affordable and easy access to the tools and platforms that large enterprises use to communicate with customers, build a strong online reputation and leverage network marketing.

Our goals are to deliver overwhelming value to our customers, partners and employees by focusing on the needs of small businesses, building transformative solutions, and always doing the right thing. We are proud of our work, because we know that small business is the lifeblood of any economy and we play a part in creating sustainable growth for the people and communities that use our product.

Today we serve more than 35,000 small business users in the US and Canada, and our product has been instrumental in generating more that $1 Billion in incremental revenue for our customers. We are growing fast, continuously adding new industries, territories and product features so we can bring Demandforce to even more small businesses that need it. Based south of Market San Francisco, we are more than 300 people totally focused on building one of Silicon Valley’s next great software companies.

 

 

Now the info on the acquisition:

Intuit and Demandforce; A natural fit

Today we announced our intent to acquire Demandforce, a SaaS leader that provides tools to help small businesses engage, attract and retain customers. Demandforce’s SaaS application is used by thousands of small businesses to automate marketing and customer communications, build and maintain an online reputation and raise their profile with local consumers.
Demandforce will increase Intuit’s SaaS offerings for SMBs. Their email, mobile and social tools, such as online reviews, help SMBs better communicate with their customers and drive higher retention and growth in their businesses. The company is strong, with traction in industries like dental, automotive, spas and salons, optometry and chiropractors; all with considerable opportunity for growth and with room to expand into new verticals.
“Demandforce has a passion for customers, high Net Promoter Scores and strong customer retention,” said Kiran Patel, executive vice president and general manager of Intuit’s Small Business Group. “I’m thrilled to be adding a new business to Intuit’s small business group, especially one with such a strong leadership team, customer-centric mindset and high energy culture. All of this makes Demandforce is a natural fit with Intuit.”
Once the transaction closes, Demandforce will continue to be led by Rick Berry, Demandforce president and founder. Demandforce will be run by the same leadership team that built the company. The team will continue their commitment to delivering overwhelming value to customers.
“We’re so proud of our contributions to small businesses growth,” Berry said. “Joining forces with Intuit will help us to achieve our goal of reaching more small businesses while continuing to provide our customers with more innovation, more connection, and more success.”
Here at Intuit, we are looking forward to welcoming the Demandforce team once the transaction closes sometime in May.

 

Friday, April 27, 2012

Keeping Current with Advanstar

Advanstar Logo.jpeg
 
 
I'm proud to be part of the Advanstar Dental group.  I've been writing for them since 1998, but it sure doesn't seem like it's been that long!
 
One of the things we do… and try to do better every time, is to stay in contact with our readers.  To do that, we routinely send out emails to our subscribers and dentists who are interested in our events, offers, etc.
 
Well, in order to make things better, we're making some changes in how we communicate.  The info below was sent out earlier, but I wanted to make sure none of my readers missed it.  Here are the things you need to know:
 

Dear Industry Professional,

Because of your involvement in fields allied to Advanstar Communications Inc and certain of its business partners, you have been receiving targeted information regarding special offers on products and services that may be valuable to your business.

Please note that the email address you have been receiving these emails from will be changing. To ensure that you continue to receive these valuable messages in your inbox, please add our new email address dental@aci-dental.net to your address book.  For instructions on adding us to your email account,please click here.

You can choose to opt out of these messages right now (see information below) but we're hoping you won't. During Advanstar's 70+ years in business, we have connected thousands of companies offering products and services relevant to business professionals' day-to-day work.

Advanstar Communications is a leading B2B publishing, tradeshow and conference company serving professionals and consumers in the fashion, pharmaceutical, healthcare, dental, veterinary, motorcycle and automotive industries. To learn more about our company, please visit us at www.advanstar.com.

To protect your privacy while you receive these messages, we assure you that your email address remains in the physical possession of an authorized Advanstar fulfillment center and is not released to any of the business partners whose messages you are receiving. Each offer sent to you will include the opportunity to opt-out from receiving future correspondence. Additionally, every message you receive will be preceded by the name of the company offering the product, so that will see the source before opening the message.

If you do not wish to receive these offers, please click here to unsubscribe.

PS: We are confident these offerings will be useful to you. However, if you have questions or wish to speak to someone about this message, please call (toll free) 866-529-2922 at any time, or fax us at 218-740-6417. Outside the U.S., please phone 218-740-6395. Contact us by mail at Advanstar Communications Inc., Attn: Customer Service, 131 West First St., Duluth, MN 55802-2065, USA.



Thursday, April 26, 2012

3M Cloud Library to Be Unveiled for Patrons

Since I"m currently in Minneapolis, MN I thought this press release was a good one for today's post.  For those of you that don't know, 3M is headquartered in St. Paul, MN.

Now, some of you may be asking yourselves why is Flucke there?  Well that's because The Star of the North dental meeting is this weekend and I'm giving two lectures on Thursday which is the first day of the meeting.  I'm also looking forward to seeing my gal pal Lee Brady for lunch toady.  Lee is a great human being and we just never get enough time to hang out and talk.

Now on with the post.  Thanks to 3M for putting this initiative together and helping people.  That's really what the world should be focused on...

 

Flexible eBook lending service offers hardware, digital content and apps for borrowing and reading

ST. PAUL, Minn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The 3M Cloud Library eBook Lending Service will be introduced to the public today in an open house event from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the Sun Ray location of the Saint Paul Public Library. The library is one of a number of beta sites where library staff members have undergone training and are now ready to unveil the system to patrons.

The 3M Cloud Library offers a turnkey system of digital content, in-library hardware, and apps for borrowing and reading, and promises to revolutionize how library patrons discover, borrow and read eBooks. At today's open house, attendees will be able to test drive the system, which uses several components to allow them to browse the electronic catalog and read on the device of their choice:

3M Discovery Terminals: Patrons at the library can browse the catalog on these electronic kiosks with an intuitive touch-based interface.

3M eReaders: Content from the Cloud Library can be synced with easy-to-use 3M eReaders that can be checked out like any other lendable materials. eReaders can be checked out at three Saint Paul Public Library locations including Central, Sun Ray and Arlington Hills Libraries.

Mobile device compatibility: The service's eBooks are compatible with PCs, Macs, iPads, Nooks, and Androids. Using their personal devices, patrons can browse, check out and read eBooks all without leaving the 3M Cloud Library app.

"Saint Paul is proud to be one of the first library sites to provide this service," said Mayor Chris Coleman, who will be on hand at today's event. "The fact that the system allows eReaders to be checked out along with digital content is a great way to ensure eReading is available to all. For people who have their own eReading devices, the 3M Cloud Library gives them access to thousands of titles. This system has something for all Saint Paul library patrons."

The Sun Ray location of the Saint Paul Public Library is in close proximity to 3M's campus, making it an ideal "living lab" for new technologies from 3M Library Systems.

"3M has been an outstanding partner to us, and we are proud to work with them to serve as a leader for other libraries across the country," said Kit Hadley, director of the Saint Paul Public Library. "With this technology, we are able to offer cutting-edge technology to all our patrons, whether they own their own e-reader or not."

Along with the Saint Paul Public Library, a number of other libraries across the country have now made the 3M Cloud Library available to patrons, including the Bergen County Cooperative Library System, N.J.; Maricopa County Library District, Ariz.; Douglas County Libraries, Colo.; Darien Library, Conn.; Richland County Public Library, S.C.; and the State Library of Kansas on behalf of the Kansas Digital Library Consortium. 3M will seek feedback from both patrons and staff at these locations on the service's ease of use and functionality, using their input to continue to refine the system.

For more information about the 3M Cloud Library eLending system, visit 3M.com/Cloud.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Google Drive *Is* Officially Available

Well, last week I discussed the rumored arrival of Google Drive, which should feature 5GB of Cloud Storage for free and allow you to get more if you want to spend a few dollars.

Today it seems that service has launched.

I went to "drive.google.com" after doing a Google search on the service.  This link sent me to a page that informed me that my Google Drive was not ready yet.  I clicked on a link that told them I wanted to be part of Google Drive and then a page appeared that told me I would be notified via Gmail when my Drive was ready.

From what I can glean, it appears to be designed to work well with Google Docs and should allow sharing & other functions.

Once mine is setup, I will let you know and I'll keep you advised as I tinker with it...

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Mac Users Continue to be Targeted by Hackers

As I wrote here on the blog a couple of weeks ago, I am now running an antivirus (A/V) program on my Mac.

As I type this, F-Secture, which happens to be one of my very favorite antivirus programs, is running in the background keeping my Mac safe from an increasing list of malware.

The latest bug to plague the Mac OS is being called "Flashback.S" and it spreads through a security hole in Java.  This is the same way the earlier virus (a couple of weeks ago) called Fakeflash was also spreading.

Here is the problem with the whole concept of malware and "The Cult of Mac"...

For years it was bantered about that the Mac OS was simply impervious to a virus infection.  Unfortunately, that little fact was never true, but the gang at Cupertino never made an effort to correct it and those of us in the media only did a tiny bit more to correct the myth.  The bottom line is that any software system is vulnerable to hacks.  The only reason the Mac operating system wasn't being attacked, was a numbers game.  For years, the market penetration of Mac was about 5%.  That meant that hackers could either go after the 5% of the market that was Mac or go after the 95% that was Windows.  Obviously if you are trying to steal information or hijack computers, you're going to go after as many as possible… and that meant targeting machines running the Windows OS.

Now that Mac has garnered about 12% of computers, it only makes sense that the bad guys will try to exploit it.

To that end, if you are a Mac user, I highly recommend that you take a look at F-Secure Anti-Virus.  It guards all of my Windows machines (and I have more than a few of those) as well as my beloved MacBook Pro.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Celebrate 10 Years of inLab® Excellence with Sirona Dental Systems

inLab 10.jpg
 
 

Sirona’s inLab® Ten-Year Anniversary Celebration will Take Place in Las Vegas,

August 16 – 18, 2012 at the CEREC® 27 and a half Event 

 

Charlotte, NC (April 19, 2012) – Sirona Dental Systems, the company that pioneered digital dentistry more than 27 years ago and the world’s leading producer of dental CAD/CAM systems, is celebrating the ten-year anniversary of its revolutionary inLab® laboratory CAD/CAM system with a three-day extravaganza at The Venetian Resort Hotel Casino in Las Vegas during Sirona’s CEREC® 27 and a half event. 

 

Laboratory professionals and dental professionals alike will come together to celebrate inLab’s 10-year milestone by gathering at the spectacular “inLab 10 at CEREC 27 and a half” event.  

Laboratory professionals in particular will have the opportunity to experience:

 

  • A multitude of inLab presentations that explore all aspects of CAD/CAM
  • An exhibit hall showcasing the top dental companies and their products and services
  • CE credits 
  • Meet and network with thousands of CEREC dentists and fellow laboratory owners already in attendance
  • Hands-on experience with the latest and greatest innovations in digital dentistry
  • A-list celebrity entertainment
  • Party at TAO Nightclub, the most popular club in Vegas
  • Much, much more!

 

Sirona is offering a special half-price exhibit space for all inLab laboratories that wish to further promote their services at the CEREC 27 and a half event.  In addition, all inLab laboratory owners who attend will receive an abundance of FREE material blocks from Sirona, Vident, Ivoclar Vivadent, and 3M ESPE.  So much so, that the value of the free materials to be distributed will offset the registration fee for tuition.  

 

Earlier this year, Sirona launched inLabSoftware 4.0, the most advanced and comprehensive redesign in the history of the inLab software platform.  According to Norbert Ulmer, Director of Laboratory CAD/CAM for Sirona, “We are ‘The Dental Company,’ and with this claim comes a whole lot of responsibility.  It is not enough for Sirona to simply provide the most innovative digital dental solutions in this industry.  Our mission is to innovate for continued customer success.  For that reason, we are inviting all interested dental technicians to join us in Las Vegas, where we are bringing you together with the best educators in our field.  We want to learn with you and from you about what it takes to succeed as a digital dental laboratory."

 

The CEREC 27 and a half Anniversary Celebration will also commemorate the 20th anniversary of Schick digital radiography and the 5th anniversary of the GALILEOS® Digital Imaging System.  In addition, special education tracks will highlight those product lines to broaden the appeal of the event.  The event is geared toward all dental and laboratory professionals, and follows Sirona’s traditional and successful CE event formula, consisting of education, A-list entertainment, networking, and fun.

 

Although August may seem far out on the horizon, space is limited and dental lab professionals are encouraged to visit www.inLab10.com, or call toll-free 855-237-3248, for additional information as it becomes available, including special early registration tuition and lodging packages. 

 

About Sirona Dental Systems

 

Sirona, the dental technology leader, has served dealers and dentists worldwide for more than 130 years. Sirona develops, manufactures, and markets a complete line of dental products, including CAD/CAM restoration systems (CEREC), digital intra-oral, panoramic and 3D imaging systems, dental treatment centers and handpieces. Visit http://www.sirona.com for more information about Sirona and its products.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Hundreds of thousands may lose Internet in July

When I first saw the headline above on SFGate.com, I, like you probably, thought "huh?"

 

However, trust me, this is legit.  According to an AP story by Lolita C. Baldor, there truly is going to be a loss of Internet for roughly 360,000 users worldwide with 85,000 of those users in the US.

 

It seems that a while back some Estonian hackers used a Windows vulnerability to plant some malware on victimized computers.  The result was a loss of A/V updates, but the most intriguing result was a complete change in how the machines accessed DNS servers.  For those of you not familiar with DNS, let me explain.

 

When you type in a website address into the address bar in your browser, that address is sent to a Domain Name Server (DNS).  There the "words" you entered are actually looked up and converted to a  number, which is the actual "address" of the website.  Think of it like a phone number.  You may tell your smartphone "call home" but it doesn't actually call "H-O-M-E".  It looks in the address book and finds the phone number associated with that name.  Same basic thing on the Internet.

 

So, when the Estonian malware hijacked these systems it told the infected computers to go to a totally different DNS.  This was then used to send the browsers to wherever the criminals wanted.

 

The reason?  Revenue.  The hackers made money from advertisers on the websites that were visited… oh you know, about $14 million.  Yup, $14 million.

 

The problem is that the FBI found the crooks and shut the operation down.  Crime doesn't pay, you  know.

 

However, the Feds were nice enough to create "friendly" servers to replace the rogue DNS system that was setup by the hackers.  However, the cost of those friendly servers is $87,000 and they are about to be shut down.  That means the infected machines will soon be looking for DNS servers that don't exist.

 

To get all the details, check out the story on SFGate.com

 

Oh… Mac users, don't post gloating comments.  I'm sitting here running F-Secure for Mac as our beloved OS shows more and more vulnerabilities.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

University of Texas Develops Terahertz Scanner that Could Bring Mobile X-ray Type Vision to Reality

A tip of the old electron to my pal Bill Domb for the lead on this story.

 

It seems there is a portion of the electromagnetic spectrum that we really haven't explored with consumer devcies yet.  That portion is of the "Terahertz" spectrum.

 

We've used Gigahertz for wireless networking and BlueTooth, while other parts of the spectrum are used for communication.  However, what is cool about this new technology developed by the University of Texas is that it can be used to actually see through things! This means that applications such as actual stud finders or handheld medical scanners that could see inside the body.

 

The best part of all of this is that, if it works as planned, it would allow all of this to be done with no radiation!!! That's because the terahertz spectrum is between infrared & microwave and does not produce any ionizing radiation.

 

There could be a lot of really cool applications for this.  However so far the scientists are limiting the viewing to 4 inches or less from the source for obvious reasons.  Anything that could let you, theoretically, see through anything at any distance would be a tremendous invasion of privacy, but I can see lots of healthcare applications that would speed up delivery of care while decreasing costs.

 

For the full article from the Mail Online, click here.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Periodontal Disease Linked to Cardiovascular Disease Periodontal Disease Linked to Cardiovascular Disease

On Tuesday the American Heart Association came out with a statement regarding perio disease and cardiovascular disease.  Here is the AAP statement on the same issue:

 

American Academy of Periodontology supports statement from American Heart Association; additional studies needed to determine causality

 

Chicago – April 18, 2012 – The American Academy of Periodontology (AAP) supports the American Heart Association’s (AHA) scientific statement “Periodontal Disease and Atherosclerotic Vascular Disease: Does the Evidence Support an Independent Association?” recently published in Circulation. The statement concludes that observational studies to date support an association between periodontal disease and cardiovascular disease, independent of shared risk factors. The AHA’s statement confirms the conclusions of the statements published by the On AAP and The American Journal of Cardiology in 2009 and the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force in 2008.

 

While current research does not yet provide evidence of a causal relationship between the two diseases, scientists have identified biologic factors, such as chronic inflammation, that independently link periodontal disease to the development or progression of cardiovascular disease in some patients.

 

The lack of causal evidence should not diminish concern about the impact of periodontal status on cardiovascular health. According to Pamela McClain, DDS, president of the American Academy of Periodontology and a practicing periodontist in Aurora, Colorado, “Periodontal disease and cardiovascular disease are both complex, multi-factorial diseases that develop over time. It may be overly simplistic to expect a direct causal link. The relationship between the diseases is more likely to be mediated by numerous other factors, mechanisms, and circumstances that we have yet to uncover. However, as the AHA statement points out, the association is real and independent of shared risk factors.  Patients and healthcare providers should not ignore the increased risk of heart disease associated with gum disease just because we do not have all the answers yet.”

 

The AAP believes additional long-term interventional studies are needed to better understand the specific nature of the relationship between periodontal disease and cardiovascular disease. Patients’ periodontal status should also be added to future longitudinal studies of cardiovascular disease. The AAP hopes that the American Heart Association’s statement brings attention to the association between the two diseases and the need for additional research in this area.

 

Dr. McClain encourages physicians and dentists to communicate the association between cardiovascular disease and periodontal disease to patients. “It is not as simple as telling a patient that brushing and flossing will ward off a heart attack,” says Dr. McClain. “Patients should be aware that by maintaining periodontal health, they are helping to reduce harmful inflammation in the body, which has been shown to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.”

 

Patients should expect to receive a comprehensive periodontal evaluation from their dental professional at least once a year, adds Dr. McClain. This includes a detailed examination of the teeth and gums, and an assessment of risk factors such as smoking, age, and overall health status. In addition, patients diagnosed with periodontal disease should be sure to inform their general health care provider and/or cardiologist to encourage better integration of their care.

 

“There is no compelling evidence to support that treating periodontal disease will reduce cardiovascular disease at this time,” says Dr. McClain, “but we do know that periodontal care will improve your oral health status, reduce systemic inflammation, and might be good for your heart as well.”

 

For more information about periodontal disease, visit perio.org.

 

About the AAP

The American Academy of Periodontology (AAP) is the professional organization for periodontists - specialists in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of diseases affecting the gums and supporting structures of the teeth, and in the placement of dental implants. Periodontists are also dentistry’s experts in the treatment of oral inflammation. They receive three additional years of specialized training following dental school, and periodontics is one of the nine dental specialties recognized by the American Dental Association. The AAP has 8,400 members worldwide.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Apple Gets Patent for Combined Headset and Music Player

Apple Bluetooth MP3 Patent.jpg
Here's an interesting idea from the folks at Cupertino.  Apple recently was awarded a patent for a device that would function as both a Bluetooth headset and a music player.
This is an interesting idea because the patent talks about the device functioning as a music player all on its own and not connecting to a device to stream the tunes.
Whether this ever sees the light of day is beyond me, but it's an interesting concept.  It's basically a Bluetooth device for your phone communication, paired with an iPod Nano type built-in music player.
Definitely stay tuned on this one.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Google Drive Reportedly Launching Next Week

Google Drive.jpg
For a while now, there have been rumors of Google offering a storage option in The Cloud.  While it's been rumored for at least a couple of years, it now looks as if it is really going to happen!
The service, which should be named Google Drive, is due to launch in the middle of next week.  It is expected to have integration with both Windows & Mac as well as Android and iOS and offer 5 GB of storage.  This is a pretty good size for free since DropBox currently offers users 2 GB in their free accounts.
It sounds like the product will be a downloadable app which will install all the things necessary.
Look for it at http://drive.google.com
While this won't, obviously, be the first product like this, it should bring with it the tight integration we've come to expect with Google products and should interface really with the Android.
I'm excited as I'm loving my Cloud storage of my music on both Google & Amazon.  I also routinely backup my lectures that I"m traveling to give on my Google Docs account.  With 5GB of storage, that's a lot of Keynote slide decks!
Hopefully the rumors are right on this one and Google Drive will be here before we know it.  I'm betting it will be.  Now if I can just get my hands on a pair of those Google Glasses...

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Eco-Dentistry Association To Host 2012 Earth Day Tweetchat : “Ask a Green Dentist”


The EDA will host its first ever Earth Day Twitter Chat on what it takes to be a thriving, eco-friendly dental practice

Berkeley, CA (April 16, 2012) This Earth Day, the Eco-Dentistry Association will host its first tweetchat for dental industry professionals and consumers worldwide to discuss the essentials of a high-tech, wellness based, and successful green dental practice. The tweetchat will provide an opportunity for the EDA’s GreenDOCTM Certified offices to share advice and expertise related to creating and operating eco-friendly dental offices. Everyone interested in the green transformation of dentistry is invited to participate in the discussion, which will take place on Friday, April 20, 2012 from 10-11:00 AM PST and which will use the hashtag “#ecodentistry” to facilitate the conversation.

The tweetchat will be moderated by the EDA team and hosted by the EDA’s GreenDOCTM Certified offices; the GreenDOCTM program allows practices to earn points for the green initiatives they have implemented in the areas listed below, and based upon the number of points garnered, awards either Gold, Silver or Bronze certification:page1image11840

  • Sustainable Location
  • Waste Reduction
  • Pollution Prevention
  • Energy Conservation
  • Leadership
  • Water Conservation
  • Innovation
  • Patient Care
  • Workplace Policies
  • Community Contribution
In preparation for Earth Day on April 22, the #ecodentistry tweetchat will provide a high-tech platform for industry leaders in green dentistry to share the “nuts and bolts” of green dentistry practices and to help everyone better understand what constitutes a green dental office and its benefits to patients, practitioners and the planet. Dental professionals interested in going green can ask GreenDOCs about everything from energy-saving LED operatory lights to paint containing none of the toxic Volatile Organic Compounds. Consumers may be interested to learn about the low radiation benefits of digital imaging as well as high-tech oral cancer screening modalities, of special focus in April, which is Oral Cancer Awareness month.

“Every industry is examining the ways it can lighten its environmental footprint and the dental offices leading this virtual conversation are on the cutting edge of dentistry’s efforts – pun intended”, said Ina Pockrass, co-founder of the EDA. “This tweetchat will provide a unique opportunity for leaders of the green dentistry movement to share their expertise in real time.”

The #ecodentistry tweetchat is the first in a series of twitter conversations moderated by the EDA focusing on the “how- to” and “why” of choosing eco-friendly dentistry. The EDA’s membership base of nearly 700, which spans forty-five U.S. states and thirteen countries world-wide, have pledged to re-think the way they practice dentistry while making outstanding patient and planetary care a top priority. Stakeholders throughout dentistry are members of the EDA, from dental students, to manufacturers and suppliers, to well-established practitioners, brought together by a shared commitment to stimulate rapid adoption of high-tech, Earth-friendly methods in dentistry.

About the EDA

The EDA offers dental professionals’ practical tips on incorporating eco-friendly dental methods and practices, and offers the public access to dental professionals that share their values of wellness and environmental stewardship. The organization was co-founded by Dr. Fred Pockrass, a dentist, and his entrepreneur wife, Ina Pockrass, who together created the model for eco-friendly dentistry, and operate their own award-winning dental practice in Berkeley, California, the first in the country to be certified as a green business. They formed the organization to stimulate a movement in the dental industry to employ environmentally-sound practices, like reducing waste and pollution, saving energy, water and money, incorporating wellness-based methods and the best technological advances in dentistry. More information can be found at www.ecodentistry.org

Monday, April 16, 2012

Sony Creates Watch that Accesses Twitter & Facebook

Sony Smartwatch.jpg
Although it's not quite ready for "Dick Tracy" prime time, the new Sony SmartWatch  is pretty cool.
The device is capable of getting Twitter, Facebook, weather, and even text messages.
It's also rumored to be able to connect with your Android phone via Bluetooth so that you can either answer your phone or at least know who's calling without having to take the phone out of your pocket.
It sports a 1.3 inch OLED display that is a touchscreen.
It became available for $150 last week at Sony stores.
While not something on my "must have" list, it is cool  nonetheless.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Thanks to All at the MidWest Dental Conference!

A big thank you to everyone who attended my lectures at the MidWest Dental Conference on Saturday.

 

I've got to admit I was a bit stressed over being there.  You see, this was a reunion year for me so lots of my classmates were there and when you combine that with speaking in your home town, well it can just get a little stressful.

 

However, i've got to admit that once I got rolling, I really enjoyed seeing all those familiar faces in the audience and I had a really great time doing the lectures.

 

Thanks to everyone who came and made it special.  Thanks and congrats to all my classmates who managed to get back for a special event.

 

Thanks also to Stephanie for putting the reunion dinner together.  Nice job!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Thursday, April 12, 2012

SEVEN STATES SIGN GUM DISEASE AWARENESS PROCLAMATIONS IN RECOGNITION OF SERIOUS PUBLIC HEALTH ISSUE

 

Governors Embrace the Institute for Advanced Laser Dentistry's Efforts to Foster Nationwide Education and Awareness


CERRITOS, CA (April 11, 2012)-As a direct result of outreach efforts of the Institute for Advanced Laser Dentistry, governors of seven states have issued official proclamations supporting Gum Disease Awareness week to help educate the public about the dangers of this serious and widespread health threat.
"Oral health has a major impact on overall health, and mounting university research has linked gum disease to serious health concerns including heart disease, stroke, certain cancers, diabetes and even stillbirths," says Robert H. Gregg, DDS, president of the IALD. "The IALD is all about the patient, and we believe that this is basic information that patients need to know in order to make more informed decisions about their health. We're leading the charge in communicating the serious and far-reaching impacts of this health concern, and are surprised that we are the only organization to successfully attract state-level attention to the problem, filling a void left by national organizations such as the American Dental Academy (ADA), Academy of General Dentists (AGD), and American Academy of Periodontology (AAP). Patients deserve to be informed."
As a result of the IALD's efforts, governors in Colorado, Connecticut, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Mexico, West Virginia and Oklahoma have joined the movement to advance public education in their states. The IALD is declaring war on gum disease and is working to persuade more public officials to join the potentially life-saving cause.
"The IALD has constructed social channels to facilitate ongoing public education, continued support of research initiatives and to offer free patient treatment through the IALD for qualified patients," said Dawn M. Bloore, DDS, Training Director at the IALD.  "What's more, every new visitor who "likes" the Facebook page at facebook.com/fightgumdisease and every new Twitter follower attwitter.com/fightgumdisease will trigger a $1 donation to research initiatives supporting gum disease treatment."
Eighty-five percent of American adultssuffer from some form of gum disease[1], and 50% have moderate to severe periodontitis.  Of those diagnosed, only 3% seek treatment, putting the rest at risk for a number of serious health issues. Many refuse treatment out of fear of the traditional deep cleaning cut-and-sew surgery.  In sharp contrast, 90% of patients offered the LANAP treatment accept treatment.
The LANAP® protocol, a patient-friendly laser procedure that offers an FDA-cleared alternative to traditional surgery, has been performed on tens of thousands of people for more than 13 years with positive, clinically-proven regenerative results.

IALD Drives Gum Disease Awareness
ABOUT THE LANAP PROTOCOL: The LANAP® protocol is the first and only specific laser periodontal protocol to receive FDA clearance; it has been in increasing use by the dental community since its inception by dentists Robert H. Gregg II and Delwin K. McCarthy in 1990. The LANAP® protocol is typically performed to treat moderate to severe periodontitis. During treatment, a tiny laser fiber (about the thickness of three human hairs) is inserted between the tooth and the gum to clear away infection and disease without cutting. Tooth roots are thoroughly cleaned of tartar and plaque, and the laser is used again with a different setting to create a stable, firm fibrin blood clot to seal the pocket. Unlike conventional scalpel/suture flap surgery, LANAP® treatment requires just one or two brief sessions and preserves much more healthy gum tissue. Patients can often return to their regular daily activities immediately following the procedure. The technique offers powerful benefits, including higher patient acceptance and clinically proven bone regeneration that result in lasting health improvements. For more information, visit www.LANAP.com.
ABOUT THE INSTITUTE FOR ADVANCED LASER DENTISTRY (IALD): The Institute for Advanced Laser Dentistry is a non-profit educational and research center dedicated to providing evidence-based clinical training in advanced laser dentistry therapies. Formed in 1999 by dentists Robert H. Gregg II and Delwin K. McCarthy, the IALD is both ADA CERP and AGD PACE accredited, and is nationally recognized for its continuing education (CE) programs. With more than 20 certified instructors who train dental professionals in laser dentistry techniques including the LANAP® protocol, the IALD aims to reach more underserved patients with gum disease who have avoided therapy out of fear. To that end, the organization provides free treatment to qualified patients who can benefit from the no-cut, no-sew, no-fear LANAP® protocol-providing about $750,000 in free dental services each year. The IALD's ultimate goal is for the percentage of patients seeking treatment for periodontitis to reach the percentage of patients seeking general dental care. For more information, please visit www.theiald.com.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Microsoft Announces Support of Windows XP to End in 2014

 

windows XP logo Microsoft.jpg
When the end of Windows 98 approached, no one wanted to change their operating system.   Microsoft had finally gotten it right and  had done so with a product they called Windows 98.  However, there was a big difference between what Microsoft had created with 'Windows XP.  For the first time the gang in Redmond had created an OS for the home that was based on the NT kernel.
This mean that the stability and power of the Wndow's NT platform had gone from the server to the work station.
Windows XP flat out rocked the workstation world.  It was stable, genuine, and ran… and ran…   and ran without needing a reboot of any type.
Users rejoiced and my office, running Eaglesoft from Patterson dental, began cranking like never before.  I personally credit Windows XP and its stability with single handily bringing digital charting and digital x-ray mainstream.
However, all good things must come to an end… and so it must be wit little boys and their toys… oh and even big boys and their toys.  Starting in April of 2014, Microsoft will end its support for Windows  XP and with that, begin forcing users to upgrade to another OS version.
Needless to say, some will not be happy about this, but they've done about all they can do with XP.  The OS is now over 10 years old and that's more like dog years or worse.
Furthermore with Windows 8 beginning to peak above the horizon and all the cool bells & whistles it will  hold, I really can't thing of a good reason to run that type of legacy hardware.

 

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Apple's iPad 3 Is In the House!!!

iPad 3 Multi View.jpg
Apple's iPad 3 Is In the  House!!!  And I mean that literally.  As in… the iPad 3 is in the house, this house.  You know… my house.  My domicile.  Where I live, the crib.  One could even say, "The iPad is in myPad" if one was so inclined (or even if one wasn't), it would still be a correct statement.
Q1 here in the whirlwind that sometimes is referred to as "my life" has been an interesting one.  I've been in more places these last months than I can honestly remember.  The trips have been frequent and fun, but as anyone who has lived that life can tell you, life on the road is difficult.
So this week I'm off the road, which is a blessing for me.   Instead of traveling, I'm speaking this week at the MidWest Dental Conference here in KC.  It's a nice change of pace, especially since this is my 25th Reunion of my dental graduation and I've been chosen to speak.  I'm truly honored and I'm also looking forward to seeing lots of my comrades in arms from back when my hair was dark!
Also, this is a great week for me as I celebrated my birthday today and this Friday (that's right, Friday the 13th) my beautiful bride and I will celebrated 21 years of marriage.  That's a lot of celebrations in one week, i know..
And now, let's add to it one more little tidbit that makes it even more special.  Today when I arrived home, I was greeted with a new iPad 3!!!
As most of you regular readers know, I was quick to pull the trigger on  the iPad 1 and even was one of the first to grab the Motorola Xoom Android tablet as well.  However, I wasn't as quick to lineup for the iPad 2.  I just had 2  tablets that were great and I wasn't bowled over with the iPad 2… at least not enough to spend the money for the 64GB version because… well… I  *have* to get the 64GB version.
However, now with the iPad 3 I was sufficiently behind the tech curve to be able to justify it.  So now, it sits here in my hot little techie  hands and I can just feel the Apple techie goodness oozing up from within...
I already have it synched up and all the updates have been applied.  I'll be reporting back more as I tinker and salivate.  Let the games… oh and the apps… begin!!!

Monday, April 9, 2012

Mac Viruses on the Rise!

 

Mac Virus.jpeg
For years, Mac users smugly looked upon antivirus software.  Sure, you could put a program on our Mac, but you really didn't need it.
However, that was really more of a numbers game than anything else. When you're going to write software that can steal from the masses, why steal from 5% when you conceal from 95%? That was the choice faced by those writing virus software. Windows had such a large market share that there was no use going after the slimmer and smaller pickings of folks who were running the Mac OS.
But as Bob Dylan said,” the Times they are a changing”. We now see that the Mac OS has growing continues to grow in market penetration. Because of this we are now seeing more and more nefarious web programming being aimed at the operating system running today's Apple computers.
At this point in time in the Apple user who chose you that antivirus software is not necessary for their operating system is either drink too much Cupertino Kool-Aid or is just sadly uninformed. Make no mistake about there is a growing number of programmers and implementers who are targeting the Mac OS.
The good news is there are also a growing number of strong and legitimate antivirus software companies that are writing amazing antivirus programs that support the Mac OS.
To that end my current favorite is F-Seucre.   this is an amazing program that comes in versions to protect both your Windows and Macintosh PCs.
On  this past Saturday I made the investment of installing F-Secure on my MacBook Pro that travels the world with me. I cannot afford to have the machine that is my right arm become infected. I highly recommend F-Secure for any computer that you happen to own.
If you have a Mac, my opinion is that it is now time to make sure that you are well protected from the groundswell of viruses that are coming.

 

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Philips ErgoSensor Can Provide Better Posture in the Office, What About HealthCare Treatment Areas?

 

Philips ErgoSensor.jpg
How cool is this?  The Philips ErgoSensor 24 inch monitor has a CMOS (complimentary metal oxide semiconductor - for those of you scoring at home) that can help determine how close you are to the screen and also what your neck angle is while viewing.
Why is this important?  Because many of us are looking at our monitors while slouching, twisting, or otherwise being unaware of a way we are sitting/viewing that is putting serious strain on our bodies.  I happen to know for a fact that 60-70% of dentists that file for disability do so because of injury to the neck & spine.  Now, I haven't seen the numbers for cubicle dwellers that spend lots of time in front of monitors, but I'd be willing to wager that they also tend to have a similar injury pattern.
And… when you combine the fact that dentists like me are in the "heavy duty" area of clinical treatment and then we move over to high monitor usage to review 3D scans, treatment plans, radiographs etc, you are just spelling out a recipe for disaster.
So, I like the idea of a monitor that will keep an eye on my posture an help keep me positioned properly so as to help prevent or slow down the incidence of injury.
Ergo Sensor Drawing.jpg

 

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Google Glass Goes "Out and About" at Foundation Fighting Blindness in San Francisco

Brin with Project Glass in the Wild.jpg
I've been absolutely salivating over the idea of PC, Smartphone, or whatever in a pair of glasses for over a decade now.  I even blogged about Google's foray into this era just a little while back.
Now it appears that the leaks from the Googleplex are more than PR pie in the sky.  Otherwise, why would co-founder Sergey Brinn be wearing a prototype at a public fund raiser for blindness recently.
This is all part of Project Glass which the link will provide details of.
I want to get my hands and or temples and or eyeballs on one of these asap
111

Friday, April 6, 2012

Ultradent Now Exclusive Triodent Dealer in the U.S.

I've said it here before, but in case you missed it… Ultradent is now the exclusive distributor of Triodent products here in the U.S.
I have the good fortune of calling Triodent founder & CEO Dr. Simon McDonald my friend.  He's a smart guy who comes up with products that help solve the problems practicing dentists face every day.  As an in the trenches dentist, Simon would see problems and then set out to try and solve them.  I think he succeeded quite a few times.  One of his greatest successes in the V3 sectional matrix system.  For this and all Triodent products, contact your Ultradent rep or just read below.
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Ultradent Products Inc.
Contact: 888.230.1420
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Ultradent Newsletter
Introducing Triodent: 
An award-winning range of products now distributed by Ultradent

Ultradent has maintained a history of innovative products with the end goal of making our dentist partners more efficient and benefiting patients with quality treatment. That's why we are proud to announce Ultradent is now the exclusive US distributor for Triodent products.

Triodent's flagship product, the V3 Sectional Matrix System, which features the V3 Ring, has won multiple awards from Reality, The Dental Advisor, and Dentaltown's Townies as a top sectional matrix system.

Click to watch the V3 in Action


Triodent's award-winning V3 system offers:

• Optimal tooth separation force
• NiTi for outstanding spring strength and elasticity
• Plastic tines reinforced with glass fiber
• V-shaped tines to accommodate the wedge
• Spring tilt for easy stacking of multiple rings
• Very stable on undercuts and in forceps

Time after time, the V3 system produces tight contacts and a superb seal on the matrix, requiring minimal finishing.

"We're very excited about our partnership with Triodent," said Dr. Dan Fischer, President and CEO of Ultradent Products, Inc. "Triodent's offerings provide a nice complement to our existing line of direct restorative materials."

Call or visit us:
1.800.552.5512www.ultradent.com

 

Learn more from our award-winning customer service representatives:
Toll Free:888.230.1420
Local: 801.553.4200
Email:onlineordersupport@ultradent.com

 

 

 

Dental Assistant Training 
From Our Side of the Chair

14 hours of CE Credit (Scientific)

Click here for more information.

Shannon Pace Brinker, CDA, CDD
Speaker: Shannon Pace Brinker CDA, CDD

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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