Telecommuncations giant Qualcomm is working with a Southern California health system to bring digital health advances to patients. A $3.75-million grant from the Qualcomm Life Foundation will help Scripps Health study how a mobile software platform for patient monitoring developed by AirStrip Technologies (San Antonio) affects factors such as clinical decision making and the length of hospital...
What were you doing when you were in high school? Brittany Wenger is creating a better way to diagnose breast cancer. The 17-year-old from Lakewood Ranch, FL, took home the grand prize in this year’s Google Science Fair for her “Global Neural Network Cloud Service for Breast Cancer.” Her project has shown a 99.1% success rate in identifying malignant tumors and could eventually...
Mechatronic medical devices are an important historical innovation. Hardware, combined with information-driven software processes, offers increasingly sophisticated functionality, but it also creates important problems with quality. Integration of the engineering work of various hardware, software, and human factors disciplines is a major challenge. Validation and verification testing are...
Editor’s note: This is a two-part article. Part 2 will focus on systemic problems. For many years, the medical device industry has operated without a consistent and internationally recognised regulatory process. In the U.S., companies have needed compliance to FDA guidelines, which some have lambasted for unnecessary delay while others complain about its lack of rigor. Others heartily...
A recent Forbes article on the threat of medical device hacking is the latest in a steady drumbeat of calls for more attention to be paid to medical device security. Contributor Marc Weber Tobias, a security expert and investigative attorney, paints a frightening picture for readers: Just think of the possibilities: a spouse or business partner decides it is time for a change. She (or he) obtains...
It was only a matter of time before iPads and smartphones made a real dent in medicine. In 2010, Stanford announced that it would be providing the iPads to its incoming class of med students. Last year, a study by the Computing Technology Industry Association announced that more than half of physicians use a smartphone for work. The number of medical and health apps is growing steadily, prompting...
Data from ABI Research “Moore’s Law is not actually a law,” said Roger McNamee, managing director of Elevation Partners at ITLG Innovation Summit in Santa Clara yesterday. McNamee, who was one of the early investors in Facebook, explained that Moore's law was a challenge for engineers. “Basically what Gordon [Moore] said was: unless you guys are a lot stupider...
QNX Software Systems has expanded its product and service offering to help medical device manufacturers reduce the effort of building infusion pumps, patient monitoring devices, blood analysis systems, MRI machines, robotically assisted surgery systems, and other safety-critical products that must pass regulatory approval. The expanded offering will include the QNX Neutrino real-time operating...
Wind River has packaged its Android expertise and technologies into three specialized software offerings: user experience, connectivity, and medical modules. This comes with the announcement of its Solution Accelerators for Android, a series of software modules that can help developers jumpstart their Android development and rapidly integrate compelling features and functionalities to their...
Malfunctions in medical devices don’t usually make the headlines the way airplane or train accidents do. For patients, however, medical device failures can have equally tragic consequences. Device manufacturers are morally, legally, and financially bound to ensure that their products do no harm. But despite the enormous efforts manufacturers invest in validating the safety of their devices...
Over on MD+DI, the editors recently shared their picks for story of the year. I chose Jay Radcliffe’s very public hacking of his insulin pump, which medical brought device security to the spotlight in 2011. That issue, it seems will remain in the forefront in 2012. Anup Ghosh, CEO of software security firm Invincea, told Network World that hackers are will likely look to new targets next...
 A register-transfer-language (RTL) power model is designed to optimize a range of power-sensitive applications, such as ultralow-power electronics. RPM bridges the power gap between RTL design and physical implementation. The technology predicts integrated circuit (IC) power behavior at the RTL level with consideration for how the design is physically implemented. As a result, chip power...
In a series of podcasts, Leslie Saxon, the executive director of the University of Southern California Center for Body Computing, interviews leaders in the field of wireless health. There are 12 episodes. Some of the highlights include: A key discussion on design of medical devices with Erik Olsen at Karten Design.He discusses design of users and how important user-intuitive design is for...
Express Logic recently reported that its NetX TCP/IP stack has achieved 94 Mbits/s, a 94% wire speed on Freescale’s ARM Cortex-M4-based Kinetis processor. The Kinetis has a 100-Mbit/s Ethernet port, which enables transfers at up to wire speed. Generally, TCP/IP stacks are less than 100% efficient, leading to performance well below wire speed. To facilitate rapid data transfer, the closer to...
Health 2.0, an international conference organizer, has teamed up with the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology to sponsor two competitions with the aim of improving healthcare outcomes. Starting today, entries are being accepted for “The One in a Million Hearts Challenge” and “The popHealth Tools Development Challenge.” Submissions for the...
Over at our sister publication EE Times, Dave Kleidermacher, of Green Hills Software, sounds off about the controversial IOM report that recommended FDA scrap the 510(k) process. Kleidermacher agrees with the report's conclusion, and he's a more frank in his criticism of the 510(k) process than the IOM: . . . [T]he medical industry's certification process for life-critical devices, such as...
A conference session at Health 2.0 titled “Gaming and Health 2.0” considered how the gaming industry is assuming a growing role in healthcare. Stefan Armstrong, the moderator of the event and HCP Marketing partner, explained that gaming is effective at “aligning incentives.”  Incentives, of course, are deeply embedded in everything we do as humans. (Just ask an...
Wind River is the next major operating system (OS) vendor to understand the value of having an enriched medical offering. The company recently introduced a platform for medical devices, which is part of a comprehensive software portfolio designed for medical device development, including those devices requiring premarket notification, FDA 510(k), or the more stringent Premarket Approval. The...
 A distributed modular input-output (I/O) can replace standard slice I/O and distributed I/O in industrial Ethernet applications. Using standard three-conductor cables, up to four slave devices can be connected to each master block, which communicates over the industrial Ethernet network to the controller. Each I/O device is connected to an industry-standard M12 port, creating a connection...
 A company has released a software portfolio designed for medical device development. The commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) development and run-time platform enables device safety and security. It is built on the company's VxWorks, a real-time operating system (RTOS) with a history of use in medical devices. It also includes the company's Workbench, which is a collection of embedded software...
To help developers get a jump on designing Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) wireless technology into medical devices, Texas Instruments (TI) this week announced the addition of new BLE profiles to its software development kit. We’ve talked before about what BLE means for medical electronics designers. This key feature of Bluetooth v4.0 is going to enable some pretty cool medical products,...
Embedded and mobile software provider Wind River (Alameda, CA), released the newest version of its Wind River Test Management test automation system earlier this week. Wind River Test Management 4.0 is designed to monitor, execute, and manage embedded device software testing. It can identify vulnerable segments of production code and focus testing on changes between system builds. The system also...
 A company has released a commercial embedded Linux run-time and development platform. Linux 4, Update Pack 2 is the first commercial embedded Linux to provide a fully integrated graphics software stack, from the board to the user interface framework level, according to the company. The preintegrated graphics stack includes GTK, Qt, X.Org, and the company's Tilcon Graphics Suite. It works...
Medical developers must think differently The biggest difference between a mainstream embedded application and a medical application is that the medical device usually has to work right all the time, every time. For the majority of embedded applications, it a product has an infrequent error or needs a reboot, it’s a nuisance, but not much more than that. For medical applications, product...
Electronic health records are catching on, as Marty Briggs, creative director of marketing for healthcare technology company HealthFusion, found out on a recent visit to his family doctor. In a guest blog post for Software Advice, he relates the story of how his once-skeptical physician has finally made the leap to EHRs. Briggs' doctor chose a version of the iPad as his preferred tablet, and he'...