Stanford campus photo from above

6/29/2004

Stakeholders

This is the working paper that has been keeping me so busy the past several months.

Hopefully it'll be submitted to a journal soon to be published.

6/20/2004

Center for Health Policy, Law and Management :: About Us

This weekend I have been celebrating getting a new job as a research assistant for the Director of the Center for Health Policy, Law and Management at Duke!

Center for Health Policy, Law and Management :: About Us: "The Center for Health Policy, Law and Management is an instigator and facilitator of a broad range of research related to public health and the policies that address it. It was created as a joint venture in 1998 among Duke's College of Arts and Sciences, the Law School, and the Fuqua School of Business. Our faculty members collaborate with research colleagues across schools and disciplines and teach many of the university's course offerings in health policy. Administratively, we are one of several centers within the Terry Sanford Institute of Public Policy."

6/18/2004

Nano silicon boosts tumour fight

Nano silicon boosts tumour fight: "Nano silicon boosts tumour fight

The new nano-material has broad applications

The tiny science of nanotechnology could give a big boost to cancer patients undergoing tumour treatments.

BrachySil, by biotech firm pSivida, is a silicon-based nanoscale system that takes drugs direct to the tumour site.

Silicon's structure carries an electrical current, is porous and adaptable. This means the right amount of drug can be released when needed.

Two patients at Singapore General Hospital have started testing it, with 10 more due to take part within weeks.

The new nano drug-delivery system is based on the material known as BioSilicon."

6/15/2004

BBC NEWS | Health | Being bilingual 'protects brain'


BBC NEWS | Health | Being bilingual 'protects brain'
: "Being bilingual 'protects brain'

The findings are based on tests on 104 people

Being fluent in two languages may help to keep the brain sharper for longer, a study suggests.

Researchers from York University in Canada carried out tests on 104 people between the ages of 30 and 88.

They found that those who were fluent in two languages rather than just one were sharper mentally."

6/14/2004

Optical Camouflage

Optical Camouflage: "What is Optical Camouflage?

Optical camouflage is a kind of active camouflage.

This idea is very simple. If you project background image onto the masked object, you can observe the masked object just as if it were virtually transparent.

This shows the principle of the optical camouflage using X'tal Vision. You can select camouflaged object to cover with retroreflector. Moreover, to project a stereoscopic image, the observer looks at the masking object more transparent."

Inventor plans 'invisible walls'


BBC NEWS | Technology | Inventor plans 'invisible walls'
: "Inventor plans 'invisible walls'

The invisible material is made of thousands of tiny beads

The inventor of an 'invisibility' cloak has said that his next project will be to develop the technology to allow people to see through walls.

Susumu Tachi, who showed off the cloak at an exhibition in San Francisco earlier this month, said he was hopeful of providing a way to provide a view of the outside in windowless rooms.

'This technology can be used in all kinds of ways, but I wanted to create a vision of invisibility,' he told BBC World Service's Outlook programme.

'My short-term goal would be, for example, to make a room that has no outside windows appear to have a view to the outside, then the wall would appear to be invisible.'

Professor Tachi's cloak works by projecting an image onto itself of what is behind the wearer.

A computer generates the image that is projected, so the viewer effectively sees 'through' the cloak."

6/12/2004

Slashdot | Brew Your Own Auto Fuel For 41 Cents A Gallon

Slashdot | Brew Your Own Auto Fuel For 41 Cents A Gallon: "Iphtashu Fitz writes 'Damon Toal-Rossi of Iowa City, Iowa had enough of the high price of gasoline, so it didn't take too much for his friend to talk him into switching to biodiesel, an alternative fuel based on soy or vegetable oil. But after a few months of driving 10 miles to a biodiesel fuel station he decided it was time to start brewing his own. It didn't take him long to find a recipe for biodiesel, and with used cooking oil that he gets for free from a nearby restaurant, he figures he's now getting 44 miles per gallon out of his diesel powered VW Golf and only paying 41 cents a gallon. According to the National Biodiesel Board the number of biodiesel stations in the US rose by 50% last year (to a whopping 200). The president of the American Soybean Association claims biodiesel has almost the same amount of energy as petroleum-based diesel, but cleans an engine's fuel injectors and cuts down on the number of required oil changes. Perhaps these are some of the reasons why diesel powered cars are making a comeback in the US.'"

Why US Business Schools Avoid Innovation

Sorry for the radio silence, I've been taking a course on Linear Algebra as preparation for grad school. When not doing that, I've been having a blast hanging out with Judy in Durham. This combination has left little time for blogging.

I3 UPDATE No. 27 - Why US Business Schools Avoid Innovation: "Why U. S. Business Schools Avoid Innovation

Innovation has been credited with being the spark that makes companies great and the power that has changed our lives in the last century. Yet the topic is not central to courses in U. S. business schools, while it can be found frequently in engineering schools and academic environments around the world. We will briefly examine the possible causes for innovation’s exclusion from core business courses and three conditions that may bring innovation into the mainstream of business education."

6/01/2004

Duke News & Communications

Duke News & Communications: "Madeleine K. Albright Commencement Address

[I kinda like these grad speeches.]

In future years, you will recall this ceremony and you will understand that today, May 9, 2004, was the day you first began to forget everything you learned in college.

But as the names of dead European kings and the body parts of dissected frogs begin to fade, the true value of your days here at Duke will become more and more apparent.

For although you have learned a great deal about the world around you; chances are you have learned even more about yourself.

That is vital, because from this day forward, you will have to rely not on grades or guidance from professors to tell you how you are doing and where you stand.

You will have to rely, instead, on an inner compass; and whether that compass is true will determine whether you become a drifter who is blown about by every breeze; or a doer, able to chart your own course and unafraid, when necessary, to set sail against the strongest wind.

Today is a day of joy and for approaching the future with optimism, yet in our high spirits we cannot help but be conscious of shadows.

These include the shock of terror.

The sorrow of innocent lives lost to war, disease and other plagues.

The insecurity and injustice resulting from the gap between rich and poor around the world.

And the uncertainty caused by confusion, terrible mistakes and ongoing violence in Iraq.

There is a temptation to withdraw mentally from such perils, as if focusing our thoughts elsewhere might cause them to vanish.

But avoidance is no way to live life.

One of the most moving stories to come out of September 11, 2001 involved a passenger on United Flight 93, which went down in Pennsylvania.

That passenger, Tom Burnett, called his wife from the hijacked plane, having realized by then that two other planes had crashed into the World Trade Center.

"I know we're going to die," he said. "But some of us are going to do something about it."

And because they did, many other lives were saved.

Since that awful morning, the memory of their heroism has inspired us.

It should also instruct us.

Because when you think about it, "I know we're going to die," is a wholly unremarkable statement.

Each of us here this morning could say the same.

It is Burnett's next words that were both matter of fact and electrifying.

"Some of us are going to do something about it."

Those words, it seems to me, convey the fundamental challenge put to us by life.

We are all mortal.

What divides us is the use we make of the time and opportunities we have.

Another way of thinking about the same question is to consider the recent discovery of similarities between the genetic code of a human being and that of a mouse.

We are ninety-five percent the same.

Perhaps each night, we should ask ourselves what we have done to prove there is a difference.

After all, mice eat and drink, groom themselves, chase each other's tails, and try to avoid risk.

How does our idea of "have a nice day" differ from that?

Of course, in this modern age, the hectic pace of life is our all-purpose excuse.

We spend so much time using time-saving devices we neglect to leave time for what really counts.

We may have the right intentions, but instead of acting upon them, we decide to wait - until we are out of school, until we can afford a downpayment on a home, until we can finance college for our own children, or until we can free up time in retirement.

We keep waiting until we run out of "untils."

Then it is too late. Our plane has crashed and we haven't done anything about it.

When we were very young, we do not acknowledge there are limits to what we may someday do. This is human nature, especially in America.

When we get older, we come to recognize that not every dream is possible.

But we also learn that the investment of energy, the gaining of experience, and the application of knowledge is empowering.

One day, you look around and see that there are things you can do that others cannot.

All of a sudden, you are looked to for leadership.

All of a sudden, you realize that you really can make a difference if only you have the courage to embrace challenges that truly test your character and skills.

It is not my intention this morning to place the weight of the world upon your shoulders--for that will always be your parents' job.

But I do hope that when you accept your diplomas, you will do so with a determination to make the most out of life and to search always for more and better ways to give.

I hope you will reach for that degree with confidence even if you are not truly certain at the moment about your own ability to cope, carve out a niche and excel.

I urge you to have faith because perhaps someday one of you will write a poem that elevates the mind; another a song that engenders love; a third a book shedding new light upon the mysteries of life; and the fourth a new reality TV show that makes more money in a month than the others do in a lifetime.

Perhaps one of you will follow in the footsteps of Richard Goldstone and become a global champion of human rights and law; or heed the example of Oliver Smithies and explore the farthest frontiers of medical research; or join Phillip Griffiths in helping to inspire the spirit of scientific inquiry throughout the developing world.

Perhaps one of you will devise a new foreign policy doctrine that spells out the right role for America in the world--somewhere between isolationism that shuns global problems, and neo-imperialism that leaves us grappling with the hardest problems virtually alone.

Or perhaps one of you will become President of the United States and thereby make her alma mater very, very proud.

I have tried today to speak with a light touch, but I do not mean to make light of the seriousness of the challenges this generation of college graduates will face.

-cut-

To the Class of 2004, I say again, "congratulations." And thank you once again for allowing me to share with you this wonderful day.