Five Questions: Chuck Latham

November 30, 2011 by  
Filed under Every thing you Need to Know

Chuck Latham, 69, of Charlton. he has volunteered at the Brookside Museum in Ballston Spa for the past four years. for more information on Brookside call 885-4000.Q who is the most interesting person in your family tree?A My most interesting ancestor is John Latham, a ship builder during colonial times. he had a shipyard in Brooklyn. Queen Anne sent him up the Hudson River to assess timber quality for sailing masts. She rewarded him as one of the 13 original patentees of the Kaydeross Patent, an area that encompasses most of what is now Saratoga County. there were 13 different allotments. They drew straws to see what section each person would get. John went back to new York City and sold his share. he never settled here.Q When is Brookside’s Holiday Shoppe open?A The Holiday Shoppe is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, through Dec. 31. there are hundreds of locally crafted items to choose from.Q where is your wife, Inge, from?A She’s from southwest Germany, near the border of France. We met while I was stationed over there in the Air Force. She worked in the PX. I was active duty in the Air Force from 1960 to 1964. in 1965, I joined the Air National Guard in Scotia. as a result of that, I got a full-time job as a civilian federal employee, working as a computer technician at Air Guard headquarters in Albany. Inge and I have three children and five grandchildren. I was activated right after 9/11 to Griffiss Air Force Base in Rome. That’s where they scrambled fighter jets from. I did support work in the computer field. I retired in 2002. I love Charlton’s rural setting.Q What do you do at Brookside Museum in Ballston Spa?A I started out by helping people who called in seeking information about their family genealogy. Since then, I’ve hooked up their computer lines and serviced their computers. I also do whatever heavy lifting needs doing. I volunteer there every Friday. last week I was named Volunteer of the Year at their annual appreciation luncheon. I was totally surprised.Q why do you like volunteering at Brookside? Continued…

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Nursing Informatics: An Introduction

November 30, 2011 by  
Filed under Every thing you Need to Know

Nursing Informatics is a field that combines nursing science, with computer science and information science. The nursing informatics professional is responsible for converting patient and staff needs into computer programs for the purpose of giving higher understanding to technical support personnel for the purpose of enhancing nursing care. It has become highly relevant in today’s scenario wherein, the health care has become such a complex activity and as a result making use of computer and information science technologies is necessary to care too these growing demands.

In today’s world, a nursing informatics specialist has a wide range of positions open to them and they include management of nursing-related information system, writing programs that can be used to collect patient information, and training nurses to handle new computer systems.

It should be noted that professionals are not just people who key in data into the system they are needed to implement procedures and policies that help implement new programs. Nursing is a profession that seeks to look into the overall well-being of a patient and there are more than 200 nursing specialties and sub-specialties in the world. Nurses are responsible for the safety and recovery of ill and injured people, maintenance of patient health and also for providing treatment in the event of life-threatening emergencies in a range of health-care settings.It seeks to enhance nursing further by using technology to make the process of patient care more efficient.

Their key responsibility is to create an efficient system for information handling so that data handled by a nurse as part of their daily activities is quickly stored and can be quickly retrieved when needed. At times, a patient’s record created in one particular location would need to be retrieved by a staff in a hospital stated elsewhere. With a firm information system in place, such a task can be carried out in just minutes and patient care can be continued in the new location with all relevant details in place. In the United States, the American Nursing Informatics Association (ANIA) is the country’s nursing informatics organization and it is located in San Clemente, California.

Occupy LA: Police Sweep Out Encampment

November 30, 2011 by  
Filed under Every thing you Need to Know

Lucy Nicholson/Pool/AP Photo

The Los Angeles Police Department moved in on the Occupy LA protesters at City Hall overnight, arresting at least 200 as many demonstrators refused to leave after an order to disperse.  Meanwhile, police in Philadelphia cleared out Occupy protesters from a downtown encampment, arresting at least 50 people.

In LA, police in riot gear brandishing batons descended on the area just after midnight, having been transported en mass by 30 MTA buses from Dodgers Stadium to downtown LA. an estimated 1,000 officers began closing off streets and surrounding the encampment.

“This has been declared an unlawful assembly,” an officer announced to the crowd,according to ABC News Los Angeles affiliate KABC. Protesters were told they had at most 10 minutes to disperse.

“the people united will never be defeated,” responded the crowd of demonstrators. Around 12:15 a.m. police entered the encampment and began carrying out those refusing to walk out, and began tearing down tents.

The number of people arrested totaled at least 200, according to LAPD chief Charlie Beck.

Officers dressed in all white hazmat-like suits and wearing latex gloves and booties with gun belts on the outside then moved in to clean up the camp. Police used a large cherry picker that reads “LAPD Bomb Squad” on the side to pick out the protesters who perched themselves high in trees and refused to come down.

In a statement released early Wednesday, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio R. Villaraigosa addressed the enforcement of City Hall Park’s closure.

“at approximately 12:30 a.m., the LAPD began enforcing the closure of City Hall Park after giving those in the park a final opportunity to leave without facing arrest. We have taken a measured approach to enforcing the park closure because we have wanted to give people every opportunity to leave peacefully. I ask that anyone who remains in the park to please leave voluntarily,” his statement said.

Villaraigosa also said that the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority had previously walked through the park to assess need of those who have nowhere else to go. He added that during the park’s closure, a First Amendment area will remain open on the Spring Street City Hall steps.

Officials earlier in the evening had set a 10:30 p.m. for dispersal of the crowds who have occupied the area since the beginning of October. There was an original deadline for Occupy protesters to vacate City Hall at 12:01 a.m. Monday, but protesters flooded the streets in hundreds, leading police to draw down.

Occupy Los Angeles was one of the first groups in the ‘Occupy’ movement to pop up after Occupy Wall Street began in New York on September 17. it has been one of the largest and least volatile of the worldwide ‘Occupy’ encampments.

The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that rousted protesters roamed around Center City during the night, scattering and regrouping as police tracked their moves.

“We followed them around Center City all night long and finally arrested some of them,” Police Commissioner Charles H. Ramsey told the newspaper.  three police officers suffered minor injuries, two while making arrests and one while taking down a tent.

The AM Roundup: Tablet War, L.A. Occupy Arrests, More

November 30, 2011 by  
Filed under Every thing you Need to Know

By Joanna Chung

Central banks from developed nations took coordinated action on Wednesday morning to shore up the global financial system as Europe’s rolling debt crisis continues to trouble markets. “The purpose of these actions is to ease strains in financial markets and thereby mitigate the effects of such strains on the supply of credit to households and businesses and so help foster economic activity,” the U.S. Federal Reserve said in a statement. Read the story here.

Samsung Down under: Samsung Electronics won a significant victory in its global tablet war with Apple as a panel of judges lifted a temporary ban on sales of its devices in Australia. Apple, which argues that Samsung copied the design from the iPad, had already succeeded in persuading a court in Germany to bar the sale of some of its tablets there. The U.S company turned up the heat further this week by asking the same German court to ban sales of a modified Samsung device throughout the entire European Union.

L.A. Occupy: About 1,500 police officers streamed into the Occupy Los Angeles encampment early Wednesday morning, making arrests and gradually shutting down the two-month-old protest. Protesters had been expecting the raid but the police action

Security Services and Training in Information Security and Computer Security

November 30, 2011 by  
Filed under Every thing you Need to Know

Many information security consulting firms offer security services and training, but it can be difficult for a client to differentiate between them, especially when lacking any background in the constantly-changing field of information security. The growing threat to computer systems and networks from outside attackers and insiders means that the need for information security services has never been higher. So what should you look for when considering which computer security company your organisation should hire?

To begin with, security services and training is an extremely wide field, and needs to be narrowed down to specific offerings. For example: what kind of services are priorities for your organisations’ particular situation, and which others are nice to have but not immediately necessary?

In addition, what kind of training is needed by your particular staff in your particular situation? if it were possible to produce an off-the-shelf solution that would cover all situations, then someone would have marketed one by now. but in fact both information security services, and training services, need to be highly customised to the particular needs of the client. this means that your organisation will need to hire security services and training from a specialist information security company.

What should you look for when considering the offerings of competing firms? having prioritised the computer security services your organisation requires, you should start with the following basic checks:

does the firm have a lot of experience in providing the given service (e.g. penetration testing, network monitoring, regular scanning, interim security management).

what qualifications and professional memberships are held by the people who will carry out the work?

if there is potential access to sensitive data, have the professionals involved been checked for a criminal record?

what references can they supply from past clients for this kind of service?

Another question to ask is whether the firm is currently providing this service – the more clients it has for this service, the better. this is because the field of information security is changing so fast that skills can easily become out of date, unless there is ongoing involvement in a related project.

Training should not be viewed as an optional extra. without appropriate training, all the security services and recommendations could be rendered useless. if a key staff member is unclear about how to proceed, or lacks the necessary information security training, then the money you have spent might well be wasted. The human aspect of computer security is often overlooked, yet it is this avenue that is responsible for a huge number of successful attacks in recent years.

In short, security services and training can offer real value to your organisation, but only if the information security consulting company is carefully selected, and only if staff training is included as part of the package.

What Is The Best Laptop Brand In India?

November 30, 2011 by  
Filed under Every thing you Need to Know

India is probably one of the fastest growing economies in the world. It even made it on the top 5 of the most powerful countries a few years back. It certainly has developed greatly through the years. although there are still existing slums, the country has certainly progressed. It can also be noted that India has exported a lot of their products, especially medicines. And they are the biggest producer of movies internationally. they have definitely contributed significantly to the worldwide economy. It seems that they are fast leaving most of their contemporaries economy-wise, way back them.

As Indians have mastered their entrepreneurial skills, computers became more accessible to these people. Many of these Hindi-speaking people are capable of operating computers and have found their niche in the technological world. So it does not come as a surprise if they unite through the infamous Facebook and YouTube or if they swarm in most sites. as such, you could also guess what most of them are using. yes, portable computers or laptops. Various laptop brands have penetrated the Indian market successfully. Because of these, laptops made Indians closer to technology. as it portable and convenient, it made things easier for the Indians to do computer works or to surf the net. Technology is now at the grasp of their fingertips and that’s proof enough that indeed, they have progressed by keeping in trend. So what is the best laptop brand in India? Which among these brands have won the hearts of most Indians? Examining results based on Indian polls and surveys revealed that the best laptop in India is Dell. Why? Because it’s functional, durable and affordable. these three aspects were usually topped by Dell. Its functions and features are apt with the needs and demands of a typical Indian user. Most users are quite satisfied with the durability of Dell laptops. And as it is highly functional and durable, the price you pay to have this laptop brand is all worth it; thus, it’s an affordable luxury.

So if you’re living in India and you want to avail of a portable computer, get the best laptop brand in India, Dell.

Sutter Health sued over theft of computer containing patient data

November 30, 2011 by  
Filed under Every thing you Need to Know

Sutter Health is being sued for negligence and other allegations in the mid-October theft of a computer from Sutter Medical Foundation headquarters that held information on more than 4 million of its patients.

The class-action suit, filed Monday on behalf of plaintiff Karen Pardieck of Folsom in Sacramento Superior Court, alleges that the Sacramento-based health network was negligent in safeguarding its computers and data and then did not notify the millions of patients whose data went missing within the time required by state law. The suit seeks $1,000 for each member of the class and attorneys’ fees.

The computer was stolen during a break-in through a smashed window the weekend of Oct. 15. Employees discovered the theft Oct. 17. Sutter patients were being notified last week.

“Sutter should’ve had that under lock and key, not protected by a pane of glass,” attorney Robert Buccola of the Sacramento firm Dreyer Babich Buccola Wood LLP, which filed the suit, said Tuesday. “If there’s proprietary information in their files, they have a financial interest to make sure security is of the utmost importance.”

Some 3.3 million patients whose providers are supported by Sutter Physician Services were affected.

Their names, addresses, email addresses, dates of birth, telephone numbers and names of patients’ health insurance plans dating from 1995 were contained in the computer’s database.

The computer contained the same information for 943,000 Sutter Medical Foundation patients. it also included data on foundation patients from January 2005 to January 2011, including descriptions of medical diagnoses or procedures used for business operations.

Sutter Health officials said the data breach is the largest ever at the health network.

The data were stored on a password-equipped but unencrypted desktop computer in the administrative offices of Sutter Medical Foundation in Natomas.

Sutter officials said they were in the process of encrypting patient data stored on its desktop computers, but had not yet protected the stolen computer. Data on its laptop and mobile devices were secure.

Reports of missing or stolen patient information are becoming a more common occurrence.

Over the last two years, health care organizations have reported 364 incidents involving the loss or theft of information ranging from names and addresses to Social Security numbers and medical diagnoses on nearly 18 million patients, according to the associated Press.

On Tuesday, Sutter spokesman bill Gleeson defended the time it took the health network to notify patients, saying a team had to first determine what was on the computer. Sutter also put a private investigator on the case.

“It took some time. we began a detailed, complicated process of notifying that number of patients,” Gleeson said.

Gleeson also said Sutter “deeply regrets the theft,” but would not comment on the lawsuit or on allegations that the health network had no system to back up the millions of pieces of data contained in the stolen computer.

© Copyright The Sacramento Bee. All rights reserved.

Call The Bee’s Darrell Smith, (916) 321-1040.

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Battlefield technology put to test in exercise

November 30, 2011 by  
Filed under Every thing you Need to Know

WHITE SANDS MISSILE RANGE, N.M. — Two soldiers, their boots crunching on spent shell casings and sand in the cold desert morning, were surrounded. Barren mountains rose in the distance as they made their stand among the battered brown buildings of a small village.

But it wasn’t Afghanistan, and they weren’t getting shot at. 

Instead, they were in the American Southwest getting peppered with questions, lots of questions, about a high-tech prototype communications system that is part of a revolutionary Army testing protocol aimed at quickly supplying downrange troops with needed IT devices and systems.

“How much does it weigh?”

“How long does the battery last?”

“How well does it work?”

Pfc. David Kramlich hefted a secure radio in one hand and a smartphone-like device in the other. Connected by a thick wire, the devices link soldiers to a developing Army communications network that leaders say will be the backbone of future operations. The handheld system, part of the Joint Battle Command-Platform, or JBC-P, shows them their locations via an onscreen map, along with the locations of friends and foes.


Kramlich paused and looked nervously at the people clustered around him:  Pentagon program managers, journalists, government scientists, senior acquisitions managers, high-ranking officers.

 “well, I don’t think it works too well at all,” he finally said, explaining that icons showing vehicles or other soldiers on the move often inexplicably disappeared from the device’s LCD screen.

Hearing the honest verdict of soldiers on the ground was the reason the crowd had assembled at White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico earlier this month. It was an open house of sorts for the Army’s Network Integration Exercise, or NIE, designed to bypass the typically ponderous process of getting gear to soldiers.

Starting this year, the Army says it will run two NIEs yearly, each several weeks long. In October and November, the 3,800 soldiers of the 2nd Brigade, 1st Armored Division put more than 40 information technology systems — government-developed and commercial systems alike — through their paces. It culminated in a large-scale combat exercise spanning thousands of square miles of desert terrain.

Successful systems that fit well into the overall network can get on a fast-track for distribution downrange. but several that didn’t measure up in the first NIE, held in the spring, have already been killed or undergone drastic redesign.

Perhaps the most high-profile victim was Nett Warrior, a system in development for more than a decade in one form or other that is functionally similar to the system Kramlich’s unit was testing.

When Nett Warrior arrived at the spring NIE, it was a bulky mess, with components and wires arrayed all over the soldier’s torso and head. with batteries, it added nearly 15 pounds to an infantry soldier’s already heavy load.

Soldiers bashed it for its weight and difficulty of use. When Nett Warrior showed up at the NIE this fall for further testing, it had been pared back to a small radio and a smartphone or tablet computer. The new Nett Warrior is nearly identical in form to the JBC-P handheld, and program managers said the two could be merged into one system in the future.

Soldiers in the NIE know they’re being listened to, said Capt. Brandon Chase, whose MRAP-outfitted unit tested vehicle-borne communications systems.

In the exercise earlier this year, they tested the troubled Joint Tactical Radio System-Ground Mobile Radio, or GMR, a piece of equipment in development by the Army for years that simply didn’t work well, Chase said.

Partly as a result of the NIE testing, the Army canceled the GMR program this fall and announced it would look for a commercially available radio to do the job.

“To know that we’re having an effect, and to know we’re helping supply the things soldiers need downrange to do their jobs — that’s gratifying,” Chase said.

The NIE process is the brainchild of Army Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Peter Chiarelli, a noted smartphone enthusiast who says the Army should use the best off-the-shelf technology while emulating the agility of commercial tech companies.

A fully functioning Army network that provides seamless communications from the field to the highest levels of leadership “will make our various formations more lethal, faster and more survivable on today’s battlefield,” Chiarelli said earlier this year. “The network will literally redefine how we fight in the same way that social media has changed the way we interact and communicate in our personal lives.”

But traditional military development processes are so slow that when high-tech equipment reaches the operational stage, it’s already badly outdated. Instead of taking advantage of the state of the art, the normal Army method is “like developing a 2007 iPhone today and putting it into service five years from now,” said Col. Daniel Hughes, who is in charge of systems integration for the exercise.

While the testing of individual gadgets by soldiers is a big part of the NIE, there’s much more to it than that. not only do all the devices have to work together, they have to work with the higher-level system that links the entire battlefield together.

The backbone of the exercise is the Warfighter Information Network-Tactical, or WIN-T. It’s a satellite communications network designed to be quickly set up anywhere the Army operates. It must carry voice, data, even live video between headquarters, commanders on the ground and troops in the field. In addition to the 3,800 soldiers in the brigade, hundreds of civilians were on hand to monitor, test, and if necessary, fix the network.

WIN-T is being developed incrementally, with current work focusing on getting individual soldiers and commanders in moving vehicles fully linked up. that day can’t come soon enough, said Sgt. Gary Tillery, who leads the squad that Kramlich serves in.

The system his men tested is far from perfect, he admitted. but the veteran of multiple combat tours in Iraq said it still easily beats not knowing where your comrades are located when the shooting is about to start.

“I’ve definitely experienced that,” he said. “Two squads are setting up on opposite sides of a road — unless you know where every person is, that’s a friendly-fire risk waiting to happen.” The promise of the system outweighs its current problems, he said.

“this works to a degree, but it’s not ready to be put into use,” he said. “but that’s why we’re here, to do the testing needed to work out the problems and make it better.”

Twitter: ChrisCarroll_

Georgetown’s Markel Starks aware that questions abound about his ability

November 30, 2011 by  
Filed under Every thing you Need to Know

Markel Starks is a question mark.

The Georgetown sophomore admits the doubt. Embraces the uncertainty. all but appropriates the question mark as part of his identity.

“Pretty much all the point guards that come here, they have a big question mark,” Starks said. “A lot of people don’t really know what I can do. They don’t know if I’m apt for the position, which is fine. there should be question marks.”

Sure, he played in 30 games last season. but 9.7 minutes per game as a wide-eyed freshman can’t reveal what comprises a point guard.

Now comes Starks‘ test.

Chris Wright is gone. he was Georgetown’s glue. A backcourt institution. The one who filled the stat sheet at point guard. Made coach John Thompson III’s Princeton offense hum. Subtract him, and the Hoyas looked like a car trying to run without gasoline.

That’s what happened after Wright broke a bone in his left hand Feb. 23. he missed three games after surgery – all losses by a combined 41 points — before returning at less than full strength for Georgetown’s 18-point loss to Virginia Commonwealth in the NCAA tournament’s second round.

Replacing Wright isn’t exactly what the 6-foot-2, 175-pound Starks has planned.

“I’m just taking the torch and running with it,” Starks said. “It’s a new step. A new beginning.”

One of 10 freshmen and sophomores on Georgetown’s roster, Starks is similar to the rest of the youth-filled squad. Talented, after a standout career at Georgetown Prep playing for former Hoyas guard Dwayne Bryant. A relative unknown, after averaging only 1.5 points and handing out 20 assists in spurts of court time last season. Competitive, insisting the old Georgetown toughness is back.

“His attitude has been different,” senior center Henry Sims said. “We haven’t gotten where we want to get. We haven’t gotten to the Sweet 16s and Elite Eights and won the Big East tournament. you never want to leave a place without your name being remembered.”

Starks fights nerves about taking over at point guard. Inspiration comes from Boston Celtics point guard Rajon Rondo. Starks sees the same quickness. same height. same build. same physical features.

And Rondo’s teammates want to play with him. That matters more to Starks than assists or steals. It’s what he aspires to, perhaps not surprising from someone who hopes to be a congressman.

“honestly, I want that to be me,” Starks said. “I want the guys to want to play with me, not for me.”

Starks is easy with his smile and bold with his words. He’s vocal (or, more accurately, “very, very vocal,” as emphasized by sophomore forward Nate Lubick). but a freshman’s timidity, at least on the court, can lurk with Starks. Sure, he can pass the ball. Shooting, however, takes encouragement.

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Live discussion: Should local government be worried about cyber security?

November 30, 2011 by  
Filed under Every thing you Need to Know

When we tweeted about cyber security in local government last week some of the responses we received were surprising. they ranged from bewildered questions to claims that local government isn’t interested in cyber security, and even some confusion over what the phrase actually means.

But many of you are very interested in the issue and keen to learn more. Cyber security often refers to attempts to combat cyber crime, including viruses and hacking, but can also include data protection and network safety – all essential elements of running a successful and safe local authority.

You can read more about the UK cybersecurity plan here.

With local government embracing cloud computing and other shared digital services, councils will have to be on top of network security, especially when they guard sensitive data about us all. So what threats could local authorities face, and how can they protect themselves for the future?

Join our panel from 12pm on Wednesday. Post your comments and questions now, or tweet us at @GdnLocalGov.


Andrew Miller leads on government information security services at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). Prior to joining PwC, Andrew worked for Fujitsu Defence and Security, where he was responsible for the transformation of the company’s security services portfolio.

Tara Savage is senior marketing manager at BT Global Services. Tara has been responsible for a number of strategic security campaigns as well as co-ordinating a series of global training programmes. Tara currently co-ordinates BT’s work with external security market analysts, ensuring that BT is recognised as a leading security provider.

Richard Carty is the commercial director of Netshield, which specialises in the delivery of complete IT services. Richard has more than 30 years experience in IT and specialises in business continuity planning and managed hosting services.

Katrina Day is an associate at Coffin Mew LLP and specialises in providing data protection advice, primarily to the social housing sector.

Karl Smith is head of cyber security assurance services at BT Global Services. Karl is responsible for the delivery of the company’s cyber security portfolio, including Cyber Defence Quickstart and CHECK and CREST, which helps protect against hacking.

This live discussion is designed and managed by the Guardian local government network to a brief agreed with BT, sponsor of our digital innovation hub.

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