The Keep-An-Eye Edition Monday, March 5, 2018

Smartphones Speed Recovery Of Surgical Wounds, by Jessica Twentyman, Financial Times

While most cases are resolved, an untreated SSI can potentially lead to sepsis and death, making postoperative wound monitoring a vital part of caring for a patient once they return home, via clinic appointments or visits from healthcare professionals.

This vigilance comes at considerable cost, but a team at the Wisconsin Institute of Surgical Outcomes Research (WiSOR), part of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, has recently trialled a smartphone-based approach that could make it easier for healthcare professionals to keep an eye on healing, remotely.

The team at WiSOR has developed an iPhone app called WoundCheck, which patients use to regularly send photos of their wounds to the nurses responsible for their care and to answer a few brief questions; for example, have they experienced fevers or chills in the past 24 hours, have they changed their dressing, is the wound leaking?

The More Countries Try To Restrict Virtual Private Networks, The More People Use Them, by Josephine Wolff, Slate

Pushing back against restrictive regulations isn’t new for VPN providers. They’ve been facing blocks and bans in countries like China and the UAE for years and finding ways to circumvent these restrictions for just as long. Since they can operate remotely from anywhere, VPN providers always have the option of picking up and leaving any country they find to be overly restrictive, while still being able to serve customers in those countries. In this way, they can avoid legal requirements to store logs of user activity, or law enforcement raids. For instance, several PIA servers in Russia were seized without warning a few years ago. The company subsequently stopped operating any servers in Russia, Kim said.

So VPN providers have been going back-and-forth with restrictive governments for some time. The thing about 2017 that felt really new—and different—to many of them was the sudden involvement of Apple. To have a U.S.–based company suddenly get involved in cutting off access to VPNs for people in certain countries changed providers’ understanding of who was on their side and who they were fighting against. Moreover, Apple’s App Store block was more effective than any other technical restrictions the VPN services had faced before. According to Gonzalez, it’s the one restriction that NordVPN has been unable to circumvent for iPhone users based in China.


If The Mac’s Standard Clock/alarm Doesn’t Fill Your Needs, Check Out ClearTime, by Dennis Sellers, Apple World Today

It boasts a fully configurable clock with user configurable sizes and colors, and alarms that can be configured to use built in sounds or user selected audio tracks.


Only Code At Work? That Doesn’t Make You A Worse Programmer, by Itamar Turner-Trauring, Code Without Rules

With time and practice, the strengths of enthusiasts and pragmatists can converge. Even so, different people will typically end up with different skillsets, different approaches, and different ways of building software.

This is how it should be. Software projects are too big to be built by one person, too complex to be encompassed by one view point.


Bad iPhone Notches Are Happening To Good Android Phones, by Vlad Savov, The Verge

As every phone manufacturer pursues a minimalist design philosophy, a problem emerges of how to add charm, humanity, and character to devices that are becoming essentially just a big screen. Apple took the risky step of introducing its signature notch, and the positive response from iPhone X owners together with the industry reaction at MWC this week have vindicated that choice. Others will ride the iPhone X’s coattails, they’ll soak up some of the halo effect by notching their own screens, but that fad won’t last. People will quickly learn that all notches are not made equal and this time next year we’ll probably be looking at some other disfiguration of Android devices as the latest experiment.

What I Miss Most About iPhone As An Android User, by Mike Tanasychuk, iMore

The fact that all iPhones and iPads receive the latest iOS update at the same time (as it rolls out, country by country of course) is, in my opinion, the best thing Apple has going for it. All users are consistently receiving security updates and new features as they're released. That really makes you feel valued as a consumer.