Thursday, March 5, 2009

Public Enemies

I'm really looking forward to this. I said it before and I'll say it now, you can't really go wrong with Michael Mann, Johnny Depp, and Christian Bale. And in 2009 you especially can't go wrong with a movie about bank robbers.

I'm also looking forward to Star Trek, but for completely different reasons.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Zen, Or The Skill To Catch A Killer

Twin Peaks is now streaming free online via CBS. Now you can watch the strangeness/awkwardness anytime.

They are also streaming episodes of the Twilight Zone and Star Trek which may be even better for all your procrastination needs.

Yes. This is in fact how I spent my snow day.

Monday, March 2, 2009

T = Tesla

The New York Times just posted an interesting article about how medical scans cost the same regardless of quality. Basically, patients are charged the same rate for being scanned with a ten year old low resolution MRI scanner as with a state of the art piece of equipment. The implication is that the older scans are essentially useless and that patients are being charged exorbitant fees for nothing.

You can read the article here.

I've actually heard about a related issue where patients are being charged more to be scanned with a 3T MRI scanner than a 1.5T. This might seem reasonable except for the fact that most 3T scanners are set up for research purposes not medical scans. SBU hospital tried to get permission to use our new (3T) research scanner... but the doors of the building are (thanks to some architectural blundering) too narrow for a gurney.

You know, the more time I spend inside hospitals, the happier I am that I decided to not be a "real" doctor. All I have to do is fund myself, publish tons of papers, and deal with undergraduate students.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Well that was a fun week of panic...

It turns out our tuition waivers are guaranteed for at least the next 2 years. Now we just need to re-negotiate our contract with New York for a fair downstate wage...

At the same time, the university is saying it fully intends on covering our tuition. I'm sure they also fully intended on applying the stipend increase given to my class to future classes as well. Thats not happening, but for the time being grad students aren't being forced into the wild blue yonder that is the real world.

And since all of this is making me feel just a tad bit too optimistic, here is a nice happy podcast from This American Life about the economy.

Jimi Hendrix Live at Clark University

Atwood Hall, Clark University, Worcester, MA, 1968-03-15.