* Posts by Medical Cynic

86 publicly visible posts • joined 15 Oct 2012


How the Internet Archive faces potential destruction at the hands of Big Four publishers

Medical Cynic

Re: For those neigh saying..

Nay! - unless equines have learned to speak!

Good news for UK tech contractors as govt repeals IR35 tax rules

Medical Cynic

Re: Wake me up

Stop bleating

Mouse hiding in cable tray cheesed off its bemused user

Medical Cynic

Re: "Out of Cheese" Error

had it been, I'd have recounted the tale of my Picanto, which kept misfiring and occasionally ground to a halt.

No amount of diagnostic checks showed any specific cause for the problem, and the garage wanted to change expensive parts for trial and error.

I went back to basics and checked the air filter - to discover that a field mouse had come in from the cold and chewed the air filter into fairly small pieces [supplemented bt bits of paper and cardboard from the garage floor]. These scraps were being injected directly into the cylinders!

That emoji may not mean what you think it means

Medical Cynic

Re: Eggplant

Penis engorgement is one thing, but when it goes purple you have to consider the possibility of poor venous inflow preventing adequate arterial inflow with risk of necrosis!

UK govt promises to sink billions into electronic health records for England

Medical Cynic

The money would be better spent on more front-line staff - doctors, nurses, radiographers etc.

Concerns that £360m data platform for NHS England is being set up to fail

Medical Cynic

Mistakes learned?

The only lesson the NHS has learned from its previous mistakes, is HOW TO REPEAT THEM

Who you gonna call? Premium numbers, but a not-so-premium service

Medical Cynic

When I was a student, the only telephone was a payphone in a doorway open to the elements!

And it didn't accept incoming calls, so cost a fortune in coins.

Without a trace: Baroness Dido Harding to step down as chair of NHS Improvement

Medical Cynic

"NHS Improvement" is an oxymoron.

Flushing roulette: Southern Water installing digital sewer monitors to prevent blockages

Medical Cynic

Re: It's 1984 - but with toilets

I know of someone who had to use a breadknife [kept specially in the loo] to deal with this problem.

Get ready to make processes fit the software when shifting to SAP's cloud, users told

Medical Cynic

Shades of the NHS

Why is this news?

All NHS software relies on the users configuring their workflow to match the software.

I've got a broken combine harvester – but the manufacturer won't give me the software key

Medical Cynic

Re: Only half the story of half the story

Surely only two 'features' are needed on a tumble dryer? Temperature setting and duration. Anything else is unnecessary.

You would expect a qualified electrician to wire a building to spec, right? Trust... but verify

Medical Cynic

Re: You would expect a qualified electrician to wire a building to spec, right?

But with gas leaks, it wipes out the rest of the family, too!

Ad blocking made Google throw its toys out of the pram – and now even more control is being taken from us

Medical Cynic

Re: In a past far far away

Ps Auto Trader, did what it said on the cover.

I never bought Exchange and Mart because it was full of ads!!

Wireless screen in estate agent window just begging for someone to fill it with mischief

Medical Cynic

Re: Wireless Display

What chipset did you order?

Google Nest server outage leaves US, European smart homes acting dumb

Medical Cynic

Re: That's what you get for trusting Google.

Do tell us the answer please.

Did I or did I not ask you to double-check that the socket was on? Now I've driven 15 miles, what have we found?

Medical Cynic

Re: Poor On-Call this week

outwith is indeed called outwith outwith Scotland

But it means a different place there! "Outwith Scotland " actually _includes_ scotland when you are outwith scotland!

Transport for London data pilot: We want to keep tabs on dockless bikes and e-bikes

Medical Cynic

Re: dumped - gyro

It would concentrate their minds if they continued to be charged until they are parked appropriately. Could run up considerable credit card bills - I assume they give card details when hiring, and are charged until it's redocked?

When you're On Call, only you can hear the silence of the clicks

Medical Cynic

Re: One from me & one a friend told me

When I was a medical student in Oxford, The [only] cardiac surgeon, who drove an car that was both very expensive and very fast, was similarly pulled over on the M40. He explained he was going to perform life-saving heart surgery at the Radcliffe Infirmary. They too gave him a police escort with blue lights and all that. Bur sadly, they couldn't keep up with him...

Beware, drone fliers, of Scotland's black-headed gulls. For they will tear your craft from Mother Nature's skies

Medical Cynic

On holiday in Norway a few years ago I visited Bergen harbour fish market.

Whilst perusing their wares, a seagull dive-bombed me, landing its payload of fishy sh*t straight down my right external auditory meatus. Strangely, it felt pleasantly warm!

So plug those lugs when you're in the company of excited seagulls!

Baroness Dido Harding lifts the lid on the NHS's manual contact tracing performance: 'We contact them up to 10 times over a 36-hour period'

Medical Cynic

Only if you use a blood-based test. Swabs may not reach the right bit of nasal/laryngeal mucosa. Not just the anterior nares.

Analogue radio given 10-year stay of execution as the UK U-turns on DAB digital future

Medical Cynic

Re: The future is behind you ....


Please check your data: A self-driving car dataset failed to label hundreds of pedestrians, thousands of vehicles

Medical Cynic

Re: Self driving car image training

And they're all from the USof A, so some of the bits of traffic lights or whatever that are seen in the corner of an adjacent square may be hard to recognise this side of the pond. Most UK traffic lights are on a pole; many in the US hang from wires. Where does the 'traffic light' stop and the network of supporting wire begin? Pedestrian crossings have some differences, too.

Facebook mulls tagging pics with 'radioactive' markers to trace the origin of photos used to build image-recog AI

Medical Cynic

Re: Eggheads? No, more likely PR drones.

Sources emit radiation - alpha, beta, gamma. But not x-rays. The gamma rays may be of the same frequencies as x-rays emitted by decelleration of electrons in a Tungsten-Rhenium target [the bremmstrahlung effect], but they are named "X-rays".

WannaCry ransomware attack on NHS could have triggered NATO reaction, says German cybergeneral

Medical Cynic

Re: Disproportionate response?

"brand new Win7 based machines"

Only in the NHS...

When the IT department speaks, users listen. Or face the consequences

Medical Cynic

A decent "Standard Image" for re-installation should point ALL the likely user file locations to the network drive. Ed Downloads, My documents,Desktop etc. Then everyone would be happy! The user need neither know nor care where the files are stored.

We're late and we're unreliable but we won't invalidate your warranty: We're engineers!

Medical Cynic

Re: I need an electrician

It's the same in aviation: There are old pilots, and there are bold pilots - but there are no old, bold pilots. With the possible exclusion of captain Eric [Winkle] Brown RN, who died in his 90s. Link to wikipedia article.

Tetraplegic patient can now move his four limbs with the help of a badass neuroprosthetic suit

Medical Cynic

Re: Great stuff; could be boon to the elderly as well.

It's The Wrong trousers!

Wallace got there first...

Cassini may be dead – but its data shows basic building blocks of life spewing from Enceladus

Medical Cynic

Pre GDPR name list

My daughter's name and signature are on a CD on board Cassini.

Part of a worldwide schools project.

Fortunately her signature has changed with maturity, reducing the risk of alien bank scamming!

You know what the NHS really needs? Influencers, right guys? #blessed

Medical Cynic

Agreed. Even a token co-payment would reduce the ludicrous trivia that GPs have to waste their time dealing with.

GIMP open source image editor forked to fix 'problematic' name

Medical Cynic

Re: The very word "disabled" is an ableist term...

to my knowledge nobody is calling out that at its core the very word "disabled" is an 'ableist' term...

Some prefer the PC term 'differently abled'! Presumably those who do, also object to 'disabled'.

I could throttle you right about now: US Navy to ditch touchscreens after kit blamed for collision

Medical Cynic

Re: That's nothing...

You must keep all your digits on the same side. All 4 fingers and thumb. Otherwise, if it kicks back, you can get a fracture of the base of your thumb. Known as a chauffeur's fracture.

Hell hath no fury like a radar engineer scorned

Medical Cynic

Don't mess with Jack!

Not so fast AI Doctor, the FDA would like to check how good you really are at healthcare

Medical Cynic

Re: Adaptive learning

The human version learns as it goes along, by its mistakes. Hence M&M [mortality and morbidity] meetings, MDTs [multi-disciplinary teams] and SUI [serious untoward incident] analysis.

Will adaptive AI be able to do the same - meetings not required, and all the info is likely to be available in the patient record?

Amid polar vortex... Honeywell gets frosty reception after remote smart thermostat tech freezes up for a week

Medical Cynic

Re: Service Life

The problem is, though, that as soon as the room with the thermostat gets up to temperature, the heat to the rest of the building is turned off.

So this is how that terrifying killer AI will end us... by pushing us down hospital wait lists?

Medical Cynic

Maybe they could employ some more staff?

Yes. Only 5 years or so AFTER basic medical qualification to train as a radiologist.

You'd have to fund more posts and then wait for the manpower to qualify.

Better would be to improve working conditions etc so that existing radiologists don't retire early, emigrate or go part time. All due to stress and relatively poor remuneration in the NHS.

Many radiologists are also going part time and/or stopping extra sessions [eg waiting list initiatives] due to punitive pension taxation rules.

Fujitsu says UK Foreign Office can't count in lawsuit over loss of £350m comms contract

Medical Cynic

They certainly b*ggered up the PACS contract a decade ago, and the Lorenzo records later on.

NHS England claims it will be all-digital within the decade

Medical Cynic

Re: As with all things this could be great if done properly

Any old person with a chronic condition needs to be seeing a specialist.

Rubbish. Hospital appointments are in just as short supply as GP appointments. They need to see specialists occasionally, but for monitoring long-term problems the GP is best placed. Much will be done by a practice nurse, anyway. And good luck with monitoring bloods online!

Medical Cynic

Re: As with all things this could be great if done properly

All that can be done online is a history and visual examination [and the latter will be sub-optimal]. No palpation of the lump or tender area. No ophthalmoscopic exam of the eyes. No dip test of urine, and no blood tests - have to make another appt for that, probably at the hospital.

And it won't take less time for the GP who will get more info from the patient in 10 mins face-to-face than in an online consultation.

Brace yourself, Britain: Health minister shares 'vision' for NHS 'tech revolution'

Medical Cynic

Re: But will it safeguard patient privacy ?

That would indeed be nice. I wouldn't bank on it, though!

One log-in per app would be a more realistic expectation.

Montezuma's Revenge still too tough for AI, new Google Brain office, and other bits and bytes

Medical Cynic

I thought this would be about AI in medicine! The 'bot doesn't understand when the patient complains of said affliction!

'Plane Hacker' Roberts: I put a network sniffer on my truck to see what it was sharing. Holy crap!

Medical Cynic

Re: So... who pays for the 3G/4G data connection?

"You don't hold the title to the vehicle. The 'log book' document specifically says THIS IS NOT PROOF OF OWNERSHIP. The DVLA own your vehicle, you are simply the keeper and the driver. Driving is illegal which is why the DVLA have to sell you a licence."

It'ts not proof of ownership, as the owner of the car doesn't need to be registered at DVLA - just the person who keeps [and uses] it.

The vehicle may be owned, eg, by a hire purchase company. You still keep and use it, but YOU don't OWN it until the finance is all paid off.

NHS England fingered over failure to forward patient correspondence

Medical Cynic

Pension debacle

If you think the forwarding issue is bad, you should look at how badly Crapita has f*cked up the GPs' pension scheme.

Medical Cynic

Re: True story.

""Late 2001, my optician wasn't happy about my field tests, and wrote to my GP requesting a specialist consultation."

This is your problem right there. Why is the optician contacting your GP? Your optician should let YOU know and YOU should contact whatever healthcare provider you want to provide the service."


The right answer would have been for the optician [primary care] to refer direct to local hospital's Ophthalmology dept [secondary care]. They have the ability to do that.

referral from one primary care body to another is just workload dumping on the GP.

Imagine you're having a CT scan and malware alters the radiation levels – it's doable

Medical Cynic

Re: NMRI is CT ...

If you want to be pedantic, Nuclear Magnetic Resonance is a physical phenomenon that can be exploited to obtain computed tomography images, but interpreted differently it can be used to give the characteristic spectra of individual molecular species for biochemical analysis both in vitro and in vivo.

Gmail is secure. Netflix is secure. Together they're a phishing threat

Medical Cynic

Re: This has happened to me for years

If you can create a filter about dots, as the linked article says you can with plus signs, it would be worth setting this up to add a red label as a warning.

Doctor finds physical changes to astronaut's eyes after ISS stint

Medical Cynic

An apostrophic error!

Astronauts' - more than one affected by these changes.

Stop slurping NHS data to enforce immigration laws? Not on your nellie, huffs UK Home Office

Medical Cynic

Most if not all GUM clinics [Genito-Urinary medicine - VD as was] see patients anonymously, using a local clinic number for continuity ID.

Oregon will let engineer refer to himself as an 'engineer'

Medical Cynic

Re: let me guess

Presumably a slightly different etymology.

Engineer as in driver of the engine, where the 'eer suffix is used similarly to as in mountaineer.

Not someone who actually engineered the construction/maintenance of the engine.

UK.gov told to tread carefully with transfer of data sets to NHS Digital

Medical Cynic


I was involved with the specification and procurement of an electronic patient record under NPfIT. We had just got to the board meeting at which the successful supplier was to be announced. On the way to the meeting [literally - in his car], the chairman received a call from NHS Central to say that the plan had been scrapped, and a new one was to start - so all funding withdrawn.

This set HNS clinical IT back by nearly ten years.

Auto-makers told their autopilots need better safeguards

Medical Cynic

Re: It is easier to automate the damn highway

Perhaps trucks could be allowed to drive faster, under automatic control in a designated lane?