Article: Digital Data Helps Public Health Departments Keep Tabs on, Tackle the Flu

Cures, Open Health, Procedures (Medical)

Digital Data Helps Public Health Departments Keep Tabs on, Tackle the Flu

No one needs a reminder that this flu season was one of the worst in recent years. Preliminary data from the Centers for Disease Control suggests it may have been worse than the 2009 season, when the swine flu pandemic strain swept the country.

The good news, however, is that digital data is helping researchers and public health organizations provide more timely predictions about the spread of the flu and assessments of seasons in progress. The advantage is that public health officials no longer have to wait for a Monday-morning quarterback approach to flu season, but can stay on top of its spread as it happens.

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Article: How to Make Everything Ourselves: Open Modular Hardware

Hardware, Open Manufacturing, Open Source

How to Make Everything Ourselves: Open Modular Hardware

Reverting to traditional handicrafts is one way to sabotage the throwaway society. In this article, we discuss another possibility: the design of modular consumer products, whose parts and components could be re-used for the design of other products.

Initiatives like OpenStructures, Grid Beam, and Contraptor combine the modularity of systems like LEGO, Meccano and Erector with the collaborative power of digital success stories like Wikipedia, Linux or WordPress.

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Article: Study: Open collaboration, which led to Bitcoin, TedX & Wikipedia, likely to grow

Innovation, Open Space

Study: Open collaboration, which led to Bitcoin, TedX & Wikipedia, likely to grow

Open collaboration – which has brought the world Bitcoin, TEDx and Wikipedia – is likely to expand into new domains and displace traditional organizations, according to a paper in a journal of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS®). “Open Collaboration: Principles and Performance,” by Sheen S. Levine of Columbia University and Michael J. Prietula of Emory University, appears in the INFORMS journal Organization Science. The study can be viewed at http://pubsonline.informs.org/stoken/default+domain/INFORMS_press_Levine/full/10.1287/orsc.2013.0872.

In the paper, Levine and Prietula explain how open collaboration creates new kinds of organizations that are not quite non-profits and not quite corporations. They describe the operating principles and build on recent research in psychology and economics to model the performance of open collaboration.

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