24 years of progress?


Nearly 2 months since my last post…

A 24 year old home computing magazine – Commodore power play from 1983 – ended this particular stasis. An article entitled "England takes the VIC seriously" (the VIC 20) reviewed some business applications for the platform coming out of the UK. Quoting from the piece

..the University Hospital in Cardiff, Wales, has been using VIC-FILE, and information-handling and record-manipulation programe, for some time in the diagnosis and treatment of diabetics. Patients are hooked up to a machine that monitors their blood-sugar level. If this falls below a certain figure, the shortfall is corrected by means of a quantity of insulin automatically administered intravenously.

Before VICFILE was purchased, the readings from the machine for each patient were written on paper. This not only used up a great deal of time and paper but was also prone to errors. The introduction of VICFILE also has allowed the readings for each patient to be stored on diskette. Therefore the physician can print lists of readings for each patient whenever they are needed, and can quickly assimilate the information and prescribe the proper insulin dosage.

A clever use of a piece of hardware, never intended really for business use given its massive  16k ROM – but here apparently used  quite effectively to solve a real problem; this would be the equivalent nowadays of an Excel/Access solution.

The VIC-20 may no longer be there, but the pen and paper certainly remains…


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