Flu, Light, and Truth: FLUx et Veritas

I am getting a flu shot, and so are all members of my family- and you should, too. That’s the simple truth in plain light, and unlike this dangerous infection, it involves no flux from year to year. That was my position last year at this time, and it will be my position next year. Hence my title, a play on the words gracing the Yale University coat of arms I have walked by countless times over the past 25 years: Lux et Veritas (light and truth).  This is just the right time for an annual booster... Read more →

Complicated life ahead.

Living in a world of change with tons of opportunities can get pretty complicated as well. Opportunities on the technological frontier will challenge societal aspects we really have to address, we have to make choices. What : Recently I had the privilege of being submerged in a training of SingularityU at NASA Ames research park in the US. Being faculty since 2011 at their Exponential Medicine track, I now also will ‘serve’ as member of the faculty for the Dutch hub ‘SingularityU The Netherlands’,... Read more →

Vegetables, Vegetable Oils, And Dairy Fat? Please Don’t Eat The Headlines!

One of the particular fringe benefits of what I do is that my interactions almost every week include leading experts in my field from all around the world.   Sometimes that’s face to face at a conference that convenes a few of us, or on rare and special occasions, assembles a who’s who. More often, we’re just swapping electrons as people do these days, but sharing ideas just the same. This past week was no exception. So it is I can say with reasonable authority that the recent spate of wildly... Read more →

The Health Care System: What’s In A Name?

The trail that led me to a career in health promotion is relatively more or less selfish, depending on where we begin it. The rather more selfish version began at age 13. On little more than a whim, I tried out for the junior high school wrestling team, which, not being a co-ed enterprise, failed to enthrall me. I was there long enough, however, to hear from the coach how many sit-ups and push-ups the worthy among us should have been able to do. Let’s just say I was unworthy, and by rather a wide... Read more →

What the candidates don’t get about drug pricing

If you are like me, you are watching with relish the presidential debates on both the Republican and Democratic side.  Sometimes, amid the reality show theatrics, they actually engage in substantive discussions about issues like Social Security, immigration policy, and energy policy. But the relish sours when they start talking about pharmaceutical pricing.  As an example, Donald Trump says that he could save $300 billion annually— quite an accomplishment since Medicare’s total Part B... Read more →

Applying the Principles of Convergence to Redesign Medicine

It goes without saying that healthcare is one of the most intractable challenges the world faces: costs are rising at an unsustainable rate, while quality of care is uneven, and access to care is falling. We’d all like to see those trends turn around. But how can we contain costs and yet increase access and quality? This is a monumentally complex question, yet it is my firm belief that the answer lies in Convergence. What is Convergence? As defined in a report published by MIT in 2011, Convergence... Read more →

Data Science, As Practised

30 years ago, Deming was poking fun at journalists describing the catastrophe of having half the teachers performing below median.  Medians, means, and modes are now taught in Middle School, and data science is hot field. Still, looking at current publications, it is not obvious that data literacy has improved. I saw this today in a report on manufacturing trends: “Only 9% of CIOs report having an accurate inventory of personal data for employees and customers.” Such a statement... Read more →

Strengths Finder’s Tom Rath Talk about Habits and Happiness

It’s Wednesday– time for the next installment of  “Happier with Gretchen Rubin.“ Try This at Home: Be a tourist in your own city. Interview:  bestselling author Tom Rath.  His new book just hit the shelves: Are You Fully Charged? The Three Keys to Energizing Your Work and Life. (Spoiler alert: the three keys are meaning, interactions, and energy.) If you want more, Tom and I interviewed each other here. Tom mentions the work of professor Teresa Amabile. Listener Question: “How can I... Read more →

Back to the ’80s? Some thoughts on oil prices

Unless you have been living in the bottom of a barrel, you no doubt have heard something to the effect that oil prices have slumped. As of February 19, in fact, they were under $30 (for WTI crude); that is the lowest, in inflated adjusted terms, since 2002. The reasons are not mysterious—sluggish demand and steady supply. Yes, prices will rise again, just as surely as the sun will rise over the oil fields tomorrow. No, I don’t know by when or by how much—and no one else does, either. I don’t... Read more →

My Red Test Cars

I’ve been driving nothing but red cars lately. Here are four quick reviews.   See lots more where this came from: http://www.jeanknowscars.com If it hadn’t suddenly started snowing for real long about late January like it was finally winter, covering our rural surroundings with a puffy cold, white blanket of pain-in-the-ass, I might not have noticed that the test cars visiting Jean’s Driveway were all red. Every single one of them. Red cars do stand out defiantly against the snow.... Read more →
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