All posts by Steve Case

A Few Drops of Blood

Wouldn’t it be amazing if all of our disease and medical health testing could be done with just a finger prick of blood? Elizabeth Holmes and I share that dream.

She said her company could do it with a small robotic lab-in-a-box. Now she’s facing criminal charges because the blood testing company she founded took some shortcuts.

Elizabeth Holmes and I Have a Dream

It’s a dream of being able to run medical tests from a single finger prick of blood. Holms initially had a dream of diagnosing and treating disease with a patch on the skin. That didn’t work out (neither the diagnosis nor treatment parts).

She founded a company called Real-Time Cures, which became Theranos. (The renaming presumably happened when the idea of providing “cures” to accompany the testing was abandoned).

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Spectacularly Successful Crowdfunding Campaigns for the Arts

In these challenging times any kind of good news is welcome. I recently received outstanding updates from three separate crowdfunding campaigns I have supported. I’ve backed nearly thirty such crowdsourced funding campaigns over the years, and some have worked-out better than others.

Campaigns supporting the development of technology products can be dicey for a variety of reasons. I’ve had much better luck with crowdfunding campaigns for the arts, with media such as TV and movies, documentaries, and books.

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The Dark side of Fitness bands

In the two years I’ve been wearing a Fitbit I’ve found it’s a great way to keep track of my activity. That’s what a fitness band is, right? Unfortunately, its attempts at encouraging movement are sometimes counterproductive.

Keep Moving

Thanks to the tracker logging every move I make, I learned to keep moving to make it happy. In the process I joined the “My Fitbit will be happy today” chorus.

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Amazon Go Grocery is the perfect answer to the Social Distancing question

Grocery stores are not my favorite places.

In the best of times shopping carts are covered with germs, whether or not you can see them. Annoying as it is to find all of the carts are wet (which is common here in the Pacific Northwest) the silver lining is that you know the rain water has given them a rinse.

I generally think of the belt at the cash register being the biggest health risk. One grocery store chain said they are now cleaning the belts at least every 30 minutes. That is less frequent than I’d like to see during “normal” times. I tend to stack things on the belt to reduce the number of items that actually touch that belt.

Now with social distancing the checkout line is an even bigger concern. Standing in a line of strangers, and setting my groceries on checkout belts that I’ve never trusted to be squeaky clean, I can’t help but wish there was an Amazon Go store in my neighborhood. No checkout line and no checkout belt means nobody and nothing touches your groceries except you and the employees that stock the shelves.

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Confessions of a Fitness Tracker Virgin

I’m not much for New Years Resolutions, but the fitness tracker I’d been given had been sitting on the desk, staring at me for over a month. The box begged to be opened, and the band placed around my wrist, never to be removed.

Then again, this Fitbit model is only water resistant, so at least we would have some time apart while I was in the shower.

Here’s what I discovered, about the technology and myself:

What’s In the Package

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Gone But Not Forgotten – Remembering the Lakewood Four, Ten Years After

Black Friday has another meaning this year. November 29, the day four Lakewood police officers were killed south of Tacoma a decade ago, lands on the same day this year as the kick-off of Christmas shopping season.

Of course Black Friday marks the day when retailers’ finances traditionally get “into the black” for the year. This time of remembrance for fallen officers is also a good thing.

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