Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Why Healthcare Is Costly

A nugget from a NYTimes article on the problems of providing adequate Wi-Fi connectivity to conferences, particularly of techies.
"“I’ve been to health care conferences where no one brings a laptop,” said Ross Mayfield, president of the business software company Socialtext and a technology conference regular."
 That's sad, and also revealing.  I doubt there's any conference in USDA where laptops aren't present, at least those conferences where there are worker bees.


Anonymous said...

Prepare to be surprised, Bill. Wi-Fi networks are banned and not in use in USDA facilities. Cellular modems are very hard to acquire, and work poorly with the available VPN. Wired network connections are also very few in conference spaces, and hubs/switches are usually unavailable.

The aged government laptops are dying, especially their batteries, and many cannot run unplugged.

Non-government solutions to these problems, such as $20 Ethernet hubs or personal laptops are also forbidden.

The main technology used, that I've seen, are GS-14's and above with government blackberries, doing email and only barely paying attention to the meetings they are in.

Bill Harshaw said...

Read this on Jan 1, another cloud to add to the depressing news. At least USDA is moving its email to the cloud, though the way today is going you'll no doubt tell me the move date is scheduled for Jan 1, 2020.