Tuesday, September 2, 2008

For Scanman

Several of my blog friends/colleagues are Mac users and very tech savvy. Vijay (Scanman) has gently nudged me into doing this one. In his recent post, he explains it

This post is my contribution to the series of posts that a bunch of us agreed to post following a conversation on twitter (relevant tweets here, here & here).

The theme: core Mac/iPhone applications for doctors / healthcare professionals.

DrCris’s post is here.

symtym’s is here.

Walter’s is here.

Theresa’s is here.

I was a bit apprehensive about posting after Tim’s masterpiece of Mac-geekery.

But I decided to go ahead and post a list similar to the ones posted by Cris, Walter and Theresa.

I am not a mac user, other than my recent addition of my iPhone. I do not feel that I am tech savvy, but Vijay is encouraging me to do this post. Part of my reason for blogging is to learn, so here goes.

I feel (know) that many of my online friends are much more tech savvy than I am (Moof, Enrico, Rob, Walter, symtym, Cris, and Vijay). They are slowly increasing my knowledge and tech use.

PC hardware that I use.

Toshiba Satellite A105 - My personal laptop. 2002 model, Windows XP operating system

Screen Size: 15.4 inches diagonal
Weight: 6 lbs
Processor Options: Core Duo, Intel Pentium M, 1.6 GHz came with 1 GB RAM which I recently increased to 1.99 GB
Graphics Options: Integrated, nVidia Go 7300 (Dedicated), nVidia Go 7600 (Dedicated)

Home Computer, etc

HP Pavillion -- model a6400f--our home computer. This was recently acquired after spring storm fried our hard drive on the old computer. Lightening came in through the phone line so bypassed all the surge protection. I was out-of-town at the Physics Reunion. My husband was working out-of-town, so no one home. Felt lucky that the house didn't catch on fire.

Intel Pentium Dual-Core E2200 Dual Core Processor; 3GB PC2-5300 DDR2 Memory; 500GB 7200rpm SATA Hard Drive; v.92 56Kbps Modem, Gigabit Ethernet; Vista Home Premium

Monitor is the HP w17e, a 17 in flat screen.

Home printer is the HP Officejet J5780 all-in-one. I used to be able to print from my laptop, but somehow haven't managed to get the new computer to allow me to do so. I admit I haven't spent much time trying to correct it.

We have a Linksys 2.4 GH wireless broadband router (allows me to use my lap top anywhere while my husband uses the main computer). We have DSL through AT&T for our Internet connection.

Office Computer, etc.

HP Pavillion -- model a1510n

AMD Athlon 64 Processor, 3800, 2.41 GHz, Graphics Adapter: nVidia GeForce 6150 LE , Total HD Size (GB): 200; MS Windows XP Professional Version 2002

Monitor is the HP vx17e, a 17 in flat screen.

Printers: HP Deskjet 3915, Epson Stylus CX 7800 (also a scanner/copier)

Fax (not hooked to my computer): HP 1040

Copier: Brother DCP 8045D

Type Writer: Smith Corona DX 4600 (when there are forms that need to be filled out and would take too much "fussing" to get lined up properly in computer/printer)

Browsers - AOL primarily, but have added Firefox to my laptop and office computers. I use IE when listening to Blog Talk Radio, as the techs there told me (via e-mail) that BTR was designed to work with IE). I am not sure I like the tab system, but am giving it a try. I have used AOL so long that I am much more comfortable with it and have things book marked and my favorites in the toolbar. I am beginning to get the Firefox toolbar set up with my favorites (Medscape, JPRS, NPR, etc)

Backup: I am not as good with backup as I should be. I know this, so about a year ago I bought on-line backup storage through Norton and now my laptop and office computer routinely backup without me having to think about it. I have it set to backup my documents, my patient information files, my photos, my Quicken files, etc. I have book-marked this post by Joshua Swimmer, MD regarding "Bulletproof Backup Strategies" so I can improve there.

Mobile Phone - the new 3G iPhone, which my husband gave to me for my birthday. I sync it to my laptop and office computer, but not my home computer since I share that one with my husband. I use the password protection feature. So far I have added the following apps: NYTimes, Twitterriffic, Facebook, Evernote, Weatherbug, Epocrates Rx, and Mediquations.

Cameras --

Canon Sure Shot Z115 -- I have had this camera since I started my practice in 1990. It is the camera that I use most often for patient photos. It is a 35 mm and takes good pictures.

Polaroid Spectra System -- Use to take photos in the office, especially when I need one the same day to send with a pre-approval letter.

Polaroid Macro 5 SLR -- Very nice for taking extreme close ups of small lesions, ie nevi or scars on faces.

Kodak EasyShare C713 -- I bought this camera shortly after I began to blog so I could share quilt and other photos. So far have only used for personal, blog pictures. I like having the negatives for patient photos, but am finding it more and more difficult to get them developed.

Core Software

On my laptop and office computer, MS Office Student and Teacher Edition 2003 -- Don't use this much at home, but it allows me to read documents e-mailed to me when Word is used. I much prefer Word Perfect for my letter writing, etc. I use the Outlook calendar and contact. To learn the ExCel, I made myself use it for keeping up with my CME's, breast implant patients (name, date of surgery, deflation, replacement/removal, etc), and other such information. I have never writer a power point presentation.

Windows Live Writer -- This is via Dr Rob who recommended it to me shortly after I started writing my blog. I have it on all my computers, so I can work on posts from any of them. It is a free download from MicroSoft. There are add-ons that allow you to insert videos, etc.

WordPerfect 11 on my office computer. This is the word processor program I use for letters, office procedure notes, yearly Christmas newsletter for my med school class, etc. I know how to justify the right and left sides of the letters with this program. I think it looks neater. [Vijay has recently in an e-mail told me how to do this with MS Word, so will have to try it.]

Adobe Reader for reading pdf documents, on all my computers. I have not learned how to write a pdf, but would like to do so.

Quicken to keep track of my bank accounts, etc.

TaxCut-- yes, I do my own taxes.

Physician Office Manager for dealing with patient addresses, insurance info/filing, etc. No I haven't managed to add a EMR system. I am able to file insurance electronically, but don't do so. It is more expensive for me to do it that way as I only file less than ten each month. So I print them out. Also, when it is a surgical procedure (ie a reduction mammoplasty) I need to send the operative and path reports with the insurance bill. That is not possible with electronic billing.

iTunes -- for music, podcasts, etc, on all my computers

AOL's Mail and GMail for email.

Now for some of the Fun stuff that I couldn’t do without…

I use Bloglines to keep up with the blogs I read. As I find more and more, that is getting more difficult to do. Anyone know what the limit is to follow and actually read?

Evernote - for saving interesting stuff for future perusal. Thanks to Cris. I really like this application!

I'll end my post with the end of Vijay's:

That brings me to the end of a rather long and an unusually technical post. I hope it wasn’t a total waste of your time. I’ll end with this tweet from twitter-pal Jen McCabe-Gorman. How True!!

Posts by others on this theme (in chronological order with twitter names and urls in parenthesis):

PF Anderson(@pfanderson): My Top Ten Tools Today

Cris Cuthbertson (@DrCris): Medical Software I Couldn’t Do Without

Tim Sturgill (@symtym): Core Mac Software, Hardware and Practices

Walter Jessen (@wjjessen): Core Biomedical Research Software and Web 2.0 Tools

Theresa Chan (@ruraldoctoring ): Web 1.69: Rural Doc’s Core Mac Apps, Hardware, Peripherals

If you are a healthcare professional or biomedical scientist, we invite you to share the hardware, software or Web 2.0 tools that you couldn’t live without. What are your core apps? Share in the comments below or write your own post and link back here or to Walter’s post.

3 comments:

DrCris said...

Fascinating list, Ramona. You are the first to use any sort of patient management or tracking software, I think.

And yes. Evernote rocks.

Øystein said...

My favorite apps:

Mail: Gmail on web and through Apple Mail.

Browser: Firefox

RSS: Google Reader

Bookmarks: Delicious

Blog: Wordpress

Video editing: Apple Final Cut Pro

Video encoding: Adobe Flash Video Encoder and Autodesk Cleaner

Photo editing: Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom

Øystein said...

Thanks for the tip on Evernote, btw. Great app!