Browsed by
Month: August 2008

On Second Thought…

On Second Thought…

With today's release of revised GDP data for the second quarter, we now see this measure of aggregate economic growth increased 3.3 percent. Exports were much stronger than initially thought and companies apparently didn't liquidate inventories to the same extent that they had during the first three months of this year. Corporate profits also managed to rebound slightly after slipping in each of the two previous quarters. In the grand scheme of things, did these revisions provide any new Read more [...]
Atoms and Emissions on the Peninsula

Atoms and Emissions on the Peninsula

While earlier this month tanks were effectively demolishing Russia's recent "123 Agreement" on civilian nuclear trade with the United States, the U.S.' newest free-trade agreement partner, South Korea, announced a new long-term energy plan that calls for a substantial shift to nuclear power generation. The U.S.-Korea FTA is still bottled up on Capitol Hill and an implementation date is uncertain. Meanwhile, Seoul (the globe's 13-th largest economy by output) started Read more [...]
The technology bridge for wind energy transmission

The technology bridge for wind energy transmission

Yesterday’s New York Times wrote about how the demand for wind generation is exceeding the transmission required to deliver that energy. While the article is correct that more wind can be integrated without new technology, intelligent systems (all part of the smart grid) could act as a bridge during the years to decades required to propose, permit, and construct a new transmission line. Advanced technology can make more efficient use of existing facilities and corridors. Real-time transmission Read more [...]
CMS Gets Fire Safety Half-Right

CMS Gets Fire Safety Half-Right

While giving the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services props for promulgating a new rule to require the sprinklering of long-term care (LTC) facilites that accept federal Medicare & Medicaid funds, one has to wonder at the agency's logic of sunseting requirements for smoke detectors. Sure, sprinklers help suppress fires and keep them from spreading, and installing sprinklers helps save lives. But fire suppression is only one-half of the fire safety equation: Fire Detection + Fire Read more [...]
Diagnostic Imaging Then and Now – What a difference a “generation” makes

Diagnostic Imaging Then and Now – What a difference a “generation” makes

With all the recent news and public interest in mammography and breast cancer detection, I remember back a generation ago, actually two generations ago, about an incident which affected our family, in which the timely and efficient use of diagnostic imaging could have made a big difference for all of us. In the mid-1960's, my grandmother was stricken with breast cancer. She was then in her late 50's.  For some time, her physician noticed a lump in her breast and had taken a very conservative, Read more [...]
Alexander Graham Bell: IPR Crook?

Alexander Graham Bell: IPR Crook?

Say it ain’t so, not that iconic name. But this is indeed what Seth Shulman convincingly argues in The Telephone Gambit, his essential foray into exactly how Bell (whose multitudinous papers only became publicly available in 1999) came to be the acknowledged inventor of the telephone. How was it that Bell, one of whose wealthy sponsors was also the father of his fiance, went from apparently not grasping the breakthrough “variable resistance” insight – complete with using acidic water to complete Read more [...]
Is Secret Ballot in the Workplace a Thing of the Past?

Is Secret Ballot in the Workplace a Thing of the Past?

Secret ballots in elections are an underlying principle of democracy. That's why you just have to scratch your head when you see a bill to eliminate private ballots in union elections titled, "Employee Free Choice Act." The AFL-CIO gave it that name on the claim that it will "restore workers' freedom to choose for themselves..."  But the Coalition for a Democratic Workplace (CDW) -- to which NEMA is a proud member -- isn't buying that claim. As the Read more [...]
Celebrating DICOM

Celebrating DICOM

Last April, during a banquet in Chengdu, China, members of the DICOM Standards Committee paused for a toast to celebrate the DICOM Standard's 25th anniversary.  Or was it the 15th?  No one really cared.  All agreed that the establishment, in 1983, of the ACR/NEMA Committee (which developed the first, second and third versions of that Standard) was worthy of a toast.  Likewise, they thought it was appropriate to toast the 1993 publication and demonstration of the first truly Read more [...]
In the dark about shift to energy-efficient lighting

In the dark about shift to energy-efficient lighting

For the second time this year, the Washington Times OP-ED page contains a commentary that lashes out against the national transition to modern, energy efficient lighting (David Deming, “Fluorescent Light Bulb Folly”). As a leading media venue for conservatives, WashTimes is generally effective in highlighting instances of government over-reach and misguided regulation. On this issue, however, their featured pundits continually miss the mark. The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, contrary Read more [...]
Who’s Next?

Who’s Next?

If  you are losing track of the number of  times the U.S. Government has offered to be the lender of last resort to a sinking enterprise recently, you will appreciate a great editorial from today's Wall Street Journal that highlights an alarming feature of the current economic scene: the profusion of U.S. government funded bailouts, rescues, and backstops. As the article points out, the housing market collapse and credit crisis have produced a flurry of interventions ranging from facilitating Read more [...]