How Robber Barons Hijacked the Victorian Internet (ArsTechnica) — cautionary tale of the exploitation of a monopoly. Once installed as the dominant proprietor of the nation’s telegraph system, public trust in the confidentiality of Western Union transmissions evaporated. Gould “scanned the telegraph, or manipulated it, as an open book to the secrets of all the marts,” Josephson wrote.
Harvard Study: Computers Don’t Save Hospitals Money — The recently released study evaluated data on 4,000 hospitals in the U.S over a four-year period and found that the immense cost of installing and running hospital IT systems is greater than any expected cost savings. And much of the software being written for use in clinics is aimed at administrators, not doctors, nurses and lab workers. […] He pointed to Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Latter Day Saints Hospital in Salt Lake City and Regenstrief Institute in Indianapolis as facilities with some success in deploying efficient e-health systems. That’s because they were intuitive and aimed at clinicians, not administrators. I’m not sure anyone, not even the study’s author, knows what success looks like. Lower costs, yes. Data to improve quality of care, yes. Data to contribute to population statistics, yes. Greater throughput, yes. Fewer lost patients, yes.
The Internet of Things That Do What You Tell Them: Cory Doctorow passionately explains how computers are already entwined in our lives, which means laws that support lock-in are much more than inconveniences.