Sunday, December 20, 2015

Interesting, but it seems to perpetuate the fallacy that Healthcare requires unique security tools or techniques. Why does that not surprise me? 90 days to create a new bureaucracy, look at other industries rather than your own needs, get the taxpayer to give them all that for free – how typical.
Beth Kutscher reports:
The healthcare information technology sector is hailing healthcare-specific cybersecurity provisions that have made their way into the massive omnibus legislation that Congress passed on Friday.
The $1.1 trillion spending and tax extender bill, which is now on its way to President Barack Obama, includes language that closely follows the recommendations from the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society and other groups, which have pushed for greater government support for combating cyber threats.
Read more on Modern Healthcare.
[From the article:
The legislation creates a healthcare industry cybersecurity task force (PDF) to be established within the law's first 90 days. The task force will study how other industries combat cyber threats as well as the technical and other challenges that make the healthcare industry vulnerable to attacks.
It also calls for a single pipeline of actionable information on cyber threats that could be accessed in real-time and at no cost. Access to that information is currently cost-prohibitive to small and mid-size healthcare organizations, said Samantha Burch, HIMSS' senior director of congressional affairs.

This is political speak, right? You don't think he actually believes that? To actually do that, you would need to know that “Evil Isis Guy” uses the nom-de-guerre “Ronald McDonald”
Obama Says the Feds Vet Social Media Before Issuing Visas
… Today, during his year-end press conference, President Barack Obama attempted to clarify what social data is and isn’t included in the vetting process. “Our law enforcement and intelligence professionals are constantly monitoring public posts, and that’s part of the visa review process,” he said. What the government doesn’t have access to, he said, are the multitude of private email, chat, and text platforms that we all use on a daily basis.

Interesting. Will this cause states to require commercial licenses for Uber drivers?
Uber-Style Flight-Sharing Service Shot Down by U.S. Court
An Uber-style business that connects private pilots with travelers willing to split fuel costs and other expenses was shot down by a Washington, D.C., court.
The judges on Friday declined Flytenow Inc.’s request to review a Federal Aviation Administration ruling that pilots who use the service to find passengers must have commercial licenses. connects members who share expenses in exchange for flights on a route predetermined by the pilot. AirPooler Inc. offers a similar service that was also blocked by the FAA’s rules, which rejected the idea that cost-sharing is different from a commercial aviation operation.

(Related) Another way to speed your commute.
Inaugural routes include flights from Denver’s private airport in Centennial (APA) to Aspen, Vail-Eagle & Telluride.

Facebook Dominates Nielsen List of 2015's Most Popular Apps
Once again, Facebook was the most popular app of the year with nearly 127 million users logging on each month.
The social network handily beat YouTube, which came in second on Nielsen's "Top Smartphone Apps of 2015" list with 97.6 million users.
Facebook saw an 8 percent increase from 2014, when it topped the list with more than 118 million users. Another one of the company's apps, Facebook Messenger, jumped to the third spot in 2015 with more than 96 million users, up from around 53 million last year.

Reading is good.
Despite predictions, print books are alive and well
by Sabrina I. Pacifici on Dec 19, 2015
Pleased to share this article via Quartz – Against all odds, print books are on the rise again in the US
“For the last half decade, ever since digital books and e-readers first came on the scene, news headlines have been at war. “The physical book is dead,” some reports declared, while others vehemently argued for the eternality of the printed word. Data, actually, supports the latter sentiment. At least in the US, sales of physical books have experienced a renewed surge of interest, according to Nielsen BookScan, a data provider that collects data on roughly 85% of the print market. As of early December 2015, Nielsen says, around 571 million paper books have been sold in the country—a modest but noticeable increase over the 559 million sold in 2014.”

It's scary how closely this matches the way some of my students write.

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