Category Archives: Uncategorized

Gallup on 2014 US WellBeing

The Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index measures well-being nationally. The 2014 results were just published.

The index shows Georgia squarely in the middle of the pack. Looking at the Community results, Atlanta is also in the middle of the pack, and is dragged down by very low community numbers.

Two key graphics tell most of the story:

Gallup-Healthways Insight 1

Gallup-Healthways Insight 2

The reports are here:





Edison Electric: latest # on Smart Meters

50 million out there and growing fast:
Edison Report on Smart Meters

The graph below shows progress over time. Doubled from 2009 to 2011. Doubled again from 2011 to 2014!



But still very few experiments with price signals. Some interesting ones though, all voluntary.

Interesting that there is no political consensus that there should be peak demand prices that are MUCH higher than average time of day. Conversely, it is pretty amazing that no movement has surfaced to create a uber-cheap energy pricing time of day – probably from midnight to 5 a.m. If such a movement were to develop, I would argue that pricing at $5/KWH or less would be totally appropriate for off-hours, $10 for regular, and $50 or more for the 30 minutes around “peak” would be very appropriate. This would create the right incentives and effectively stop the idiotic construction of electric utilities in the US. After all, these incremental facilities have one and only one objective – to cover peak demand, which is still unfortunately growing.

Commentary pulled out below:

Smart pricing programs include Baltimore Gas & Electric’s Smart Energy Rewards, Oklahoma Gas & Electric’s SmartHours, Pepco and Delmarva Power’s Peak Energy Savings Credit, San Diego Gas & Electric’s Reduce Your Use, and Southern California Edison’s Save Power Day.
Some customers are using devices like programmable controllable thermostats to respond to the price signals, while others are altering their behavior – all to take advantage of the opportunity to save money on their electricity bill. While these programs have different names and nuances, all are enabled by smart meters and, for most customers, the result is energy savings, bill savings, and increased satisfaction.

My own check of the data tells me that there are about 50 big utilities, and – with the exception of some really slow ones, like NY and Illinois and Dominion in Virginia, and also NC – most are either full deployed or will be by end of 2015.

On the other hand, pricing strategies area, well, pathetic. Not sure why. Here is my spreadsheet:

EEI Smart Meter Status_201409

Cardiologists and Wearables

Mark Bard writes:

Your Cardiologist Does Not Want Your Wearable Data – Addressing the Concerns of Physicians As We Enter the “Connected Health” Era

Last week we discussed the current and future market opportunity for patients with heart disease to utilize health and fitness trackers. Only 12% of cardiovascular/heart disease patients are using trackers – and only 6% more report they are interested in using them in the future. However, understanding the patient side of the question is only one side of the equation. For connected health (and wearables) to drive the most value we really need the cardiologists/physician to be part of the equation through utilization of the data in care and treatment planning or by providing positive reinforcement to patients using the technology.

Recent data from Digital Insights Group show approximately 1 in 4 cardiologists currently have patients sharing data from fitness and activity trackers (such as Fitbit) with them in their practice. This number is higher than the number of patients using a device because it reflects the population of physicians with any patients using a device to share data with them in their practice.

Beyond the current population of cardiologists utilizing patient generated activity and fitness data, future interest (based on current devices and data streams) remains limited at the current time. In an effort to better understand what is holding back all those physicians we explored some of the barriers to making the move – or using data from patients attempting to share the data with their physician today.

The number one objection among cardiologists today is … Fear of Data Overload. Just over half of cardiologists agree the potential stream of user-generated health and activity data may be too much to assimilate, integrate, and utilize with regard to making treatment decisions. This underlines the importance of tools and dashboards to help physicians (and their team) better understand the trends, outliers, and how to quickly and efficiently integrate the data into their existing medical records platforms.

The next one (and perhaps understated given we don’t have a lot of examples in this space yet) is the liability of receiving this data from patients. In other words, imagine the deposition lawyer asking a cardiologist about when his practice received data showing the patient was clearly engaged in physical activity that placed them at risk given their recent diagnosis and proposed treatment plan. Yes, we’ll eventually be able to limit the scope and place the responsibility back with the patient … but until that time cardiologists (and physicians overall) will be cautious to blindly accept user-generated data.

Finally, one that will take time to address is the concern that the data generated from various devices lacks any sense of “data standards” that can be used to plan care for specific patients. In other words, will one or two platforms became the “gold standard” for key cardiovascular and heart related metrics generated by these platforms? Have those metrics been verified in clinical trials (or any trials) to show a correlation to health, wellness, treatment, and outcomes?

The transition to connected health has already begun and the latest push from Apple and Google should help move the industry forward. However, engaging the physician and addressing their key concerns (data overload, liability, standards) will be critical to making the transition effective for both the patient and their physician.

Fab Labs

Another great idea from Clay Johnson: let’s create the first “Fab Lab” in Atlanta – at Serenbe.

“Fab” is short for “fabrication” – and a Fab Lab is part of a global network of Fab Labs, initiated by the MIT Center of Bits and Atoms to encourage fabrication by lay people.

The idea is that making things with tools, particular things that are a part of the emerging digital economy, is much easier and much more fun than people think. Participants can learn a lot, and create a lot.


Serenbe needs a Fab Lab!

A very rough guess was made to answer the question: what would it cost to make this happen? Clay’s best guess is $100K.

Where would the Fab Lab be housed? Not clear at this time, but surely we can find a great place.

The section below of the website makes it clear that there are four criteria, all of which we can meet:

1. Must be open to the public
2. Must subscribe to the FabLab charter
3. Must have a common set of tools and processes*
4. Must participate in the global network (there is a Fab Lab academy, and annual global summit, etc)

* a laser cutter for 2D/3D design and fabrication, a high precision milling machine for making circuits and molds for casting, a vinyl cutter for making flexible circuits and crafts, and a fairly sophisticated electronics workbench for prototyping circuits and programming micro controllers. Optional: large wood routing machine for furniture and housing applications and 3D printers.

From the Website
Who/What qualifies as a Fab Lab?
The four qualities and requirements listed below altogether create an enabling environment that we call a Fab Lab. If your lab effort meets all these criteria, “Welcome!” If you feel you are in synchrony with the Fab Lab form and spirit, please use our logo in your fundraising efforts, and keep us informed of your progress. Please register your lab effort or new fab lab on the world map here. Here are the criteria we currently use for defining a Fab Lab:

First and foremost, public access to the Fab Lab is essential. A Fab Lab is about democratizing access to the tools for personal expression and invention. So a Fab Lab must be open to the public for free or in-kind service/barter at least part of the time each week, that’s essential.

Fab Labs support and subscribe to the Fab Lab charter:

Fab Labs have to share a common set of tools and processes. A prototyping facility is not the equivalent of a Fab Lab. A 3D printer is not a Fab Lab. The idea is that all the labs can share knowledge, designs, and collaborate across international borders. If I make something here in Boston and send you the files and documentation, you should be able to reproduce it there, fairly painlessly. If I walk into a Fab Lab in Russia, I should be able to do the same things that I can do in Nairobi, Cape Town, Delhi, Amsterdam or Boston Fab Labs. The critical machines and materials are identified in this list: and there’s a list of open source software and freeware that we use online as well (embedded in Fab Academy modules here: ) But essentially it’s the processes and the codes and the capabilities that are important. So you want a laser cutter for 2D/3D design and fabrication, a high precision milling machine for making circuits and molds for casting, a vinyl cutter for making flexible circuits and crafts, a fairly sophisticated electronics workbench for prototyping circuits and programming microcontrollers, and if you can possibly find the funds, you’ll want the large wood routing machine for furniture and housing applications. We are also testing fairly inexpensive, but robust and with fair resolution 3D printers—the most current favorite is listed in the inventory.

Fab Labs must participate in the larger, global Fab Lab network, that is, you can’t isolate yourself. This is about being part of a global, knowledge-sharing community. The public videoconference is one way to do connect. Attending the annual Fab Lab meeting is another. FAB10 is in Barcelona this year, July 2-8. Collaborating and partnering with other labs in the network on workshops, challenges or projects is another way. Participating in Fab Academy is yet another way.