Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Improving the Quality of HealthCare with Robotics

Over 100 senior healthcare and robotics executives convened just prior to the Partners HealthCare Connected Health Symposium to explore how robotics is impacting healthcare and improving the lives of patients. The pre-symposium executive workshop explored a full range of robotics applications in healthcare from robotics in surgery to robotics solutions for assisting the elderly. Each session examined the latest products as well as future research, with a focus on how these innovative tools are impacting the quality of care in our lives today and in years to come.

The program kicked off with a keynote by Colin Angle, CEO of iRobot, on the Future of Robotics in Improving Quality of Life. Colin provided broad thinking on the role of robotics in healthcare, setting the stage for sessions on robotics surgery, lab systems and other hospital uses, rehabilitation and assistive robotics, and home health robotics, including telepresence robotics.

Next, a panel of executives representing Brigham & Women's Hospital/Harvard Medical School, Cardiorobotics, Corindus Vascular Robotics, Intuitive Medical, vGo Communications (as moderator), and Vecna discussed advances in surgical robots that give physicians greater accuracy and control while reducing the invasiveness, risk of complication and corresponding recovery time for patients. Surgical robots, they noted, further enable specialists to treat more patients both on site and in remote connected health applications. Additional advantages to robotics surgery mentioned during the program include better articulation and imaging resulting in improved ergonomics for doctors.

The program next explored rehabilitative and assistive robotics with executives representing Hocoma, iWalk Inc. (iWalk founder Hugh Herr pictured to the right), Myomo Inc., Tibion, and vGo Communications (as moderator). Synopsis of this session is that robotic technology is increasingly being used to perform repetitive rehabilitative tasks, allowing care givers to see more patients while providing greater access to a more consistent training regimen for patients and benchmarking a patient's progress with great precision. The result is more patients treated, more care provided to each patient, and reduced cost for the provider.

The final session looked at home health robotics and featured representatives from Barrett Technology, iRobot (HealthCare Division), Intuitive Automata, and vGo Communications. We have seen robots that clean floors noted this panel, but what about robots that help improve our health in the home. Robots that can help you monitor your eating habits, talk to caregivers remotely and assist with household chores like dishes are not that far away. Given the increasing demands on healthcare providers and demographic trends of the next couple decades, robotics in the home is poised to become an increasingly familiar tool in the caregiver's arsenal.

Friday, October 15, 2010

MassTLC's Third Annual Innovation unConference Energizes New England Innovators

Over 600 technology entrepreneurs, executives, investors and leaders jammed the World Trade Center in Boston's Innovation District yesterday for MassTLC's Innovation 2010 unConference. The third annual event surpassed all expectations providing over 100 participant led sessions on topics including "Intrapreneurship: Assaulting the Battlement of Corporate Indifference"; "Wrong Reasons to be an Angel"; and "42 Ways to Generate Buzz." You can view all sessions and notes here:, follow the chat on twitter here:, and browse session content here:

In addition to the incredibly thought provoking sessions, over 360 individual meetings took place between entrepreneurs and experts who provided the up and coming tech leaders candid advice and insights on how to move their idea/ business forward. Participants cited these one-on-one meetings as as fundamental experiences that will significantly shape the future of their businesses.

A special THANK YOU to our incredible sponsors -- Avid, Google Ventures, LKN+S, Microsoft, and WilmerHale . Without their support we could never have hosted such an amazing event. And of course, to co-chairs Bill Warner and Antonio Rodriguez who worked tirelessly with the staff to produce an outstanding event. Bill's dedication, vision and passion for this work in the region is to be commended. And finally, thank you to our connectors, partners and all participants who made this year's unConference unforgettable -- here’s what some of you had to say...

As a result of today,...

  • I met several investors, entrepreneurs and new friends who are sweating it out with passion. I feel great about this journey!
  • Thanks Bill Warner and all of MassTLC -- my first unConference EVER -- and it was awesome!
  • As a result of today I am going to approach a potential new partner with a very cool idea that will grow both our businesses
  • MA has connected as never before to take supreme global dominance in the tech economy
  • I will have lots of meets with people who hope I will hire them.
  • I might have started a new program
  • I am a better entrepreneur, networker, and driver! Thank you, MassTLC! - Josh Bob
  • I may have started a new meet-up group -- we shall see!
  • I realized there is a huge need for "PR 101"
  • I got 4 kick-ass ideas for my non-profit, I learned about the human energy field, I helped an entrepreneur not make a really BIG mistake!
  • I have met with people I have not seen in 10 years
  • I have a new business idea
  • I increased my network of biz development associates
  • I met great people and engaged in really interesting conversations
  • I will get more involved in public policy for small business
  • As an "expert", I learned for the entrepreneurs that I met with, how to listen
  • My business will start to use the services of local firms
  • Follow up with new forms of financial services.
  • I learned that finance and consulting are NOT the only paths and it’s not difficult to just keep starting things up.
  • I will not go to another conference all year until the next unConference!
  • We are going to put together a working group to explore innovation opportunities in the personal identitay and personal data space built on open standards -- Pam Reeve, Mike Kinkead
  • I am connected to even more kick-ass people!
  • I have a new group of people to share ideas with.
  • I met a lot of truly interesting, intelligent, and intriguing people
  • I had a chance to meet and know amazing people and upcoming technologies.
  • I experienced the willingness of lots of people sharing their thoughts and opinions on a variety of topics.
  • I made some great new contacts/friends and caught up with some old ones.
  • New business partnership
  • My business has the connections we need to get off the ground
  • I don’t need to do any more networking for 6 months.
  • I met some really cool, super-young entrepreneurial-minded folks. Very inspiring! We need to support these guys and gals!
  • I am completely energized about Boston’s digital economy
  • I found new ideas, met some inspriring people, had new opportunities open up.
  • I met many new contacts
  • This appears to be the place to meet folks who have a track record in entrepreneurship and as a result of today, I have met quite a few of them.
  • I will find a way to mentor more entrepreneurs
  • I will provide tips for value-based selling to my new contacts
  • I got a bazillion new contacts that are relevant
  • I have a new patenting strategy that is more capital effective and scales better
  • I'm going to explore some new marketing methods and messages for my ventures.
  • I am a step closer to overcoming a main obstacle in developing my product, which in nailing the UI
  • I'm going to work with my team to set some measurable multi-year goals so we can validate what investment is needed
  • I reconnected with mentors, got some excellent insight into a potential market, and found a kindred entrepreneurial spirit.

Check out these additional posts:

xconomy: 10 Takeaways from MassTLC's unConference

Help Around Town: October 14th

Innovation Economy: Generating buzz for your venture: 43 bits of free advice from entrepreneurs, PR peeps, and journos

NetworkWorld: Ad Hoc Fixed Wireless Networks - Should Carriers Be Afraid?

above the fold: Let's Generate Buzz: MassTLC unConference (Part 1)

Leverage Point: Everybody has a Value Problem

Practically Bleeding Edge: Innovation f Rules

Mike Morris: MassTLC Unconference -'s about Customer Development

inkhouse: MassTLCL2 - 42 Ways to Get Buzz for your Venture

oneforty: My Twitter Moment! (filmed at the unConference)

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Security Summit Draws Executive Crowd

Close to 200 senior executives turned out for MassTLC's Security Summit, Secure, Prevent and Prevail hosted at Oracle in Burlington. The morning started with keynote speaker Adam Swidler, Product Marketing Manager at Google, providing insights into challenges facing organizations to secure data, prevent loss, and control risk. The attendees were able to:

- Hear about the latest in security architecture
- Learn latest best practices for dealing with security threats and compliance
- Educate themselves on digital privacy risks and protection
- Understand how to make their customers comfortable with your security policies

The summit included a keynote and three panels on topics covering: Security Challenges Hidden in the Clouds, Digital Media Privacy, and Security Threats for the Enterprise. On the Cloud Panel there was a lively discussion of adoption of the cloud among panelists. The panelist moderated by David Power, Power Strategy dove into the tough questions around security in the cloud with panelists. Jennings Aske, Chief Information Security Officer at Partners HealthCare, Eric Baize, Senior Director at Cloud Security Strategy, EMC, Bill Fandrich, Chief Information Officer and Senior Vice President at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, Steve MacLellan, Senior Vice President, Security Solutions and Architecture, Fidelity Investments, and Bilhar Mann, Senior Vice President of Strategy, Security Management, CA

The second panel on Digital Media Privacy was moderated by Joel Brenner, Of Counsel at Cooley who has a depth of experience on data security from U.S. government perspective. Joel asked the panelists, Depankar Neogi, Ph.D., Architect, Intuit QuickBase, Mike Tuchen, President & CEO, Rapid7 and Chris Zannetos, Co-founder & CEO, Courion Corporation their perspectives on helping the end-users and employees from causing data privacy issues.

The final panel was on security threats in the enterprise which was moderated by Maria Lewis Kussmaul, CFA, Co-Founder and Partner, America's Growth Capital. Much of the discussion focused on creating standards for data security yet the panelists agreed we have a long way to go to reach any consensus on standards. While this group was the last to present, panelists Glenn Brunette, Senior Director of Enterprise Security Solutions, Oracle, Joe DeSalvo, Chief Security Officer, Iron Mountain, Christofer Hoff, Director of Cloud & Virtualization, Cisco Systems, John Howie, Senior Director Technical Security Services, Microsoft and Jay Roxe, Director, Solution Marketing, Identity & Security Business, Novell, Inc, provided a stimulating spectrum of perspectives on security.

Thanks to all those who participated to make this a must attend event for security.