The doc­tor came by my place to give me a phys­i­cal in sup­port of an in­sur­ance pol­i­cy my com­pa­ny is tak­ing out on me (I'm now prob­a­bly worth more to them dead­).

This in­clud­ed an ECG, all portable and battery-powered; he stuck a hand­ful of elec­trodes all over my tor­so (I'm hairy: tak­ing them off hurt), plugged them in­to his ma­chine and it tracked my heart­beat for a few sec­ond­s. Then he called up the lab, read my iden­ti­fi­ca­tion off to a per­son there, and held the phone hand­set up against the ECG ma­chine. It whis­tled a (loud) tune in­to the re­ceiv­er for maybe thir­ty sec­ond­s, then the doc­tor got back on line and the la­dy at the oth­er end as­sured him that the ECG was nor­mal.

I was flab­ber­gast­ed, waft­ed back to the days of 300-baud acous­tic cou­pler­s. Then I was flab­ber­gast­ed again (giv­en the pre­sum­ably low band­width of this way of do­ing things) how lit­tle in­for­ma­tion is re­quired to rep­re­sent my liv­ing beat­ing heart.

author · Dad · software · colophon · rights
picture of the day
January 26, 2003
· Technology (76 more)

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