Application Programming Interfaces (APIs)

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Tips and Top Presentations from Write the Docs Portland 2017

Imagine a room full of smart, funny, and quirky people who all love documentation, technology, and... food. Put all that together and you have Write the Docs (WTD) in Portland—a community conference where documentarians meet to discuss the things we love the most. WTD is a direct descendant of Read the Docs, a site that hosts documentation of open source software. Because of its origin in the open source movement, WTD is open to a variety of job titles who all care about documentation and clear communication. This year, we had QA people, librarians, software developers, and, of course, technical writers and editors, with some User eXperience (UX) people thrown in for good measure...

Top 10 FOSS Legal Stories in 2016

The year 2016 resulted in several important developments that affect the FOSS ecosystem. While they are not strictly "legal developments" they are important for the community. For one, Eben Moglen, the general counsel of the Free Software Foundation, stepped down. Eben has been a leader on FOSS legal issues since the late 1990s and has been critical to the success of the FOSS movement. The FOSS community owes him a huge debt of gratitude, and I expect that he will continue to be active in the FOSS community. The success of FOSS adoption was dramatically illustrated when Microsoft joined the Linux Foundation and summarized in the article, Open Source Won. So, Now What? in Wired magazine...

Top Open Source Projects to Watch in 2017

No one has a crystal ball to see the future of technology. Even for projects developed out in the open, code alone can't tell us whether or not a project is destined for success—but there are hints along the way. For example, perhaps it's not unreasonable to assume that the projects that will help shape our future are those projects that have first seen rapid growth and popularity among the developer community. So which new projects should an open source developer watch in 2017? Let's take a look at a few projects that emerged in 2016 to achieve rapid notoriety in the GitHub community...

True Interoperability: Public API’s Provide the Open Platform Health IT Requires

Do we finally have the spark? Interoperability is the current health IT buzzword because it’s the essential ingredient in creating a system that benefits patients, doctors and hospitals. Almost everyone in healthcare is pressing for it and is frustrated, though probably not surprised, that Meaningful Use did not get us there. Read More »

UK Cities Start Alliance On Sharing And Re-use

Gijs Hillenius | JoinUp | April 11, 2014

The London borough of Camden and the city of Bristol have launched the Open Systems Alliance, aiming to develop, share and re-use software solutions. The alliance was announced at the Open Source Open Standards Conference, in London last Thursday, by Camden's chief information officer, John Jackson.

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UK's Code4Health Interoperability Site Launched at EHILive 2015

Rebecca McBeth | digitalhealth.net | November 4, 2015

A Code4Health community focusing on interoperability has been launched today at the EHI Live 2015 conference in Birmingham. NHS England has unveiled a new web tool to encourage people to discuss and define a list of key application programming interfaces needed to enable new models of working across health and social care. Inderjit Singh, head of enterprise architecture at NHS England, told Digital Health News the Code4Health community “is about bringing together localities, suppliers and national organisations as a group of peers.”

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Unleashed: Open Source Tech Goes to the Dogs...and Cats...and...

I was discussing open source technology with my cat this morning and he brought up a good point: "Why don't you do an article on open source tech for animals?" You know, Donald's right. Animal open source tech deserves a spotlight. Afterall, animals appear in many open source brands, and pets, like mine at least, lend lots of support while I'm trying out new software, building gadgets, or just writing about this stuff. I did a little research, and perhaps you won't be surprised to learn there is a gaggle (the name for a group of geese) of open source projects that help us keep, love, and improve the lives of animals. Let's take a gander (also another word for a goose), shall we?

VA Lays Out Plans for Cloud-Based Digital Health Platform

Greg Slabodkin | Health Data Management | December 16, 2016

The Department of Veterans Affairs has developed a blueprint for a cloud-based technology platform that will integrate veteran data from VA, military and commercial electronic health records, as well as apps, devices and wearables, so that the information is available to providers in real time. While the VA is still finalizing plans for how it implements the Digital Health Platform (DHP), the agency has a strategy in place that is seen as the future path for providing next-generation healthcare to millions of the nation's veterans...

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Veterans Health Administration Thinks Key to Interoperability May Be in the Cloud

Joseph Conn | Modern Healthcare | January 9, 2017

The giant Veterans Health Administration is poking its head into the cloud to see if therein lies the key to sharing data within and outside of its sprawling healthcare delivery system. The goal of the Digital Health Platform is to pull patient data from the VA, military and commercial electronic health record systems, applications, devices and wearables and send it to a patient's healthcare team in real-time. That would allow patients to more easily obtain health care from physicians and hospitals outside of VA facilities, but some experts say a cloud-based platform also leaves it vulnerable to hackers...

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VillageMD Launches DocOS™ Leveraging Open Source Frameworks to Accelerate the Transformation of Primary Care

Press Release | VillageMD | April 18, 2018

VillageMD, a leading national provider of primary care, has launched DocOS™, its purpose-built digital healthcare system, that allows clinicians and patients to engage in patient care free from artificial physical or technical barriers. With this ambient technology, physicians have access to critical patient information and insights that allows them to practice medicine optimally, all without changing their existing EHR. Read More »

Visual Search Goes Open Source

Press Release | Zappen | August 17, 2017

Visual Search is now open source. Zappen® and Yes Exactly, Inc.® today announced a FOSS production-ready framework for mobile application development utilizing computer vision, image recognition, and augmented reality (AR) technologies. Previously, working implementations of visual search have only been available through proprietary APIs such as that offered by Google Lens (still in beta)...

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What is Patient and Family Engagement?

I recently participated in a nationwide (not the United States) healthcare IT planning effort and one recommendation was universal availability of patient portals. Several reviewers commented that patient portal is a loaded term - it implies that clinicians control the data and patients are given a view into it. One person said, “that’s so 10 years ago.” BIDMC has been working with patient/family shared medical records, Open Notes and various consumer-facing apps since 1999. Over that time we've discovered that patients typically do not want raw data, they want something actionable - the tools necessary to assist their navigation through the healthcare process...

Why Cloud for Health IT? Sharing our Experience at careMESH

If you want true, robust security, it is increasingly difficult to argue against cloud, given the advancements and growth in major service providers such as Google, Amazon, or Microsoft. No matter how many security staff members or how much cybersecurity experience you have, the major service providers have more. It's no surprise that across industries, investment in cloud computing, storage and infrastructure are predicted to grow at a rate of 17% annually over the next 3 years.[i]

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Why EHR Interoperability Requires Health IT Infrastructure

Elizabeth O'Dowd | HIT Infrastructure | June 20, 2017

Healthcare organizations are still challenged by EHR interoperability, and are seeking health IT infrastructure tools to ensure data is accurately, efficiently, and securely shared. Eagle Physicians and Associates and Cone Health announced the successful exchange between the eClinicalWorks cloud-based EHR and the Epic EHR for improved EHR interoperability among multiple locations and health systems. Eagle Physicians needed a way to provide better quality care to patients as those individuals move among locations...

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Why Keep Open States Going?

We announced earlier this month that Open States—a project covered on Opensource.com in 2011—is now being maintained by the original creators of the project, a community of Sunlight Foundation alumni and other volunteers. After a year of scant staffing culminating in the closure of Sunlight Labs, we expect that getting Open States fully operational again will take a significant effort, and we know from experience that maintaining the menagerie of scrapers into the future isn't easy either. (That's why we're looking for volunteers and donations.) So why, despite the challenges, are we taking on this project? Why do we think that Open States matters so much? And where do we plan on taking this tool going forward?...