The Low-Coste Innovation Blog welcomes YOU


Welcome to this modest blog I started in early 2005!

To cure many diseases, like cancer or cystic fibrosis, we will need to target gene mutations, not organs! I am convinced that the future of replacement medicine (organ transplant) is genomics (the science of the human genome).
Anticipating the $100 genome era and the P4™ medicine revolution. P4 Medicine (Predictive, Personalized, Preventive, & Participatory): Catalyzing a Revolution from Reactive to Proactive Medicine.


After low-cost airlines (Ryanair, Easyjet ...) comes "low-cost" participatory medicine. Some of my readers have recently christened this long-lasting, clumsy attempt at e-writing of mine "THE LOW-COSTE INNOVATION BLOG".

Jean-Michel Billaut, famous French @nthropologist and Net economy geek : "
There are times when I think there are basically two kinds of people in my country ... A '1.0' Top-Management, frantically clinging to and stuck in the past and in (bio)conservatism... and a '2.0' startup ecosystem... building... building slowly... towards the future..."

Catherine Coste,
MIT certificate in Genomics, a Tim Burton fan (whose films are dealing with death, like this modest Blog -- and sometimes we just hate it!), a Wellywood fan (the new Hollywood)... I come from France (hopefully from that "2.0" part thing) and travel a lot: New-Zealand, Asia (Malaysia, Singapore), UK...

A death and health geek and travel buff of some kind, I love meeting new faces
. My motto:
Go Where You Are Celebrated, Not Where You Are Tolerated.

I love Genomics. Would you rather donate your data, or... your vital organs?

Audio files on this blog are Windows files ; if you have a Mac, you might want to use VLC (http://www.videolan.org) to read them.

Concernant les fichiers son ou audio (audio files) sur ce blog : ce sont des fichiers Windows ; pour les lire sur Mac, il faut les ouvrir avec VLC (http://www.videolan.org).


Appel à témoignage - Please share your experience - Teilen Sie Ihre Erfahrungen mit ! Don d'organes - Organ Donation - Organspende :


Appel à témoignage : lettre ouverte aux proches confrontés à la question du don d'organes (lire)

Please share your experience : letter to the attention of next-of-kin of donor-eligible individuals (read)

Im Krankenhaus oder in der Klinik wurden Sie nach dem mutmasslichen Willen Ihres Verwandten gefragt : ob er oder sie sich für Organspende ausgesprochen habe. Bitte teilen Sie Ihre Erfahrung mit ! (lesen)

Avertissement :

Merci de ne PAS poster de messages concernant la vente d'un organe et comportant des coordonnées téléphoniques, e-mail, etc. La loi française interdit la vente d'organes.

ICI LONDRES. LES CHIRURGIENS PARLENT AUX CHIRURGIENS. VIDEO DE JUIN 2013 SUR YOUTUBE : http://youtu.be/peHJg4taa1I

Richard Bohringer: "Discard the French politicians, all of them!"

French actor and artist and writer Richard Bohringer says all politicians are useless in France (Europe?) since banks are ruling the world (not the politicians)... Richard claims he hasn't seen a single visionary leader in French politics (right-left etc.) in three decades... Well, he isn't the only one... The problem with banks is that in times of economic crisis, they play the role of the arms dealer... French banking system is on the verge of becoming as outdated as French "telcos" - France Telecom & Orange just before they got disrupted by Free, says Marc Fiorentino, ex-trader and investments specialist, Paris. In this podcast in French, he is talking on BFM Radio, a radio that specializes in economics : download audio link.


Source:
http://www.wat.tv/video/richard-bohringer-face-henri-61o15_2eyrb_.html

Dance and the City

http://www.fubiz.net/2013/03/15/dance-photography/dance-photography7/
Dance and the City, sounds as exciting as "Sex and the City", doesn't it? When I started this blog on "Ethics" some 7 years ago, I only came across sad and dull people, boring and repetitive stuff... and arrogant "specialists" (physicians) and wimpy academics who wanted me to study for some sad, dull, boring and repetitive master... Help!!! So I started this blog, 'cause to me "ethics" is all about people talking live and cash about their experience, and controversy and creativity... I started exploring ethics not only in medicine and health, but also in Google, Apple, Amazon, 3D bioprinting, politics, 2.0 (social network), startups, Big Pharma, Big Biotech Pharma, Digital Rights Management (DRM), popular TV shows and musicals, worldwide literature... and soon found out that the fun was in mixing and matching everything... How come? Well I guess it has to do with some kind of story about innovation and creativity... about Emperors and Barbarians... "Ethics" should make your heart sing, like the film "Avatar" for instance... No strident (boring and dull and repetitive) storyline... Well, this is my little discovery on this planet, and I hope you enjoy it...

What are your own genes? Something you don't own



http://mashable.com/2013/03/26/23andme/

"You Don't 'Own' Your Own Genes: Researchers Raise Alarm About Loss of Individual 'Genomic Liberty' Due to Gene Patents: "

"Just as we enter the era of personalized medicine, we are ironically living in the most restrictive age of genomics. You have to ask, how is it possible that my doctor cannot look at my DNA without being concerned about patent infringement?

The U.S. Supreme Court will review genomic patent rights in an upcoming hearing on April 15. At issue is the right of a molecular diagnostic company to claim patents not only on two key breast and ovarian cancer genes -- BRCA1 and BRCA2 -- but also on any small sequence of code within BRCA1, including a striking patent for only 15 nucleotides." (Source).

Jean-Michel Billaut (@nthropologist) :  "On pourrait dire que ce qui se passe aux USA ne nous concerne pas. Le problème c'est que les gènes des Américains sont les mêmes que les nôtres à 99,5 %... donc si un brevet mondial est pris sur le gène XXXX sur le chromosome 4, que se passe-t-il pour les Gaulois ? Les Homo Sapiens qui vivent sur le territoire américain ont 99,5% de gènes identiques aux Homo Sapiens qui vivent en Europe et en France... Comme ils sont beaucoup plus en avance que nous (désolé) ... ils vont créer des médicaments 'génétiques' pour guérir le cancer, Parkinson, etc. Médicaments que le Gaulois évolué pourra acheter sur Amazon avec 'un DRM' américain (Digital rights management)... Je ne sais pas si vous vous en rendez compte ... mais les nations dans quelques années ..." (Facebook, 27/03/2013).

Did you say "Big data"?


42: the Digital "New Deal", by Xavier Niel

French entrepreneur and businessman Xavier Niel (Free) has just launched a free programming school...

Will some physicians set up a free, embracing cultural and ideological differences think tank, no conflict of interests (?!), in order to accommodate what some people have to say to a broad public? Everybody ought to be able to have a say in this "digital world" (not only specialists talking to... specialists).

Having a meeting in France (I'm here for a short vacation) with some surgeons and doctors in my family (some of them are professional sound people; some of them are... mad). Some of them (belonging to both categories) even spoke very wisely and I couldn't agree more with what they said:

Saying in evidence...

It is a strange thing that in France (Europe?), everybody's doing his stuff on his own, hence constantly reinventing the wheel... We can hardly find a real team player over here... Scattered voices, claiming... broad public support? Will that ever work? You, me, the broad public, everybody can hardly find out about parents' real feelings regarding next-of-kin organ donation decision... Alain Tesnière, a father who has lost his son, did write some very interesting stuff, OK that was quite some time ago... and if you want to read more about those supposedly true feelings, you'll have to rely on religious websites (a German one, all about Protestantism: KAO) or on specialized books (Claire Boileau, an anthropologist: "Dans le dédale du don d'organes"). My blog can hardly be taken into account, as I am a story artist of some kind, a scenarist (fiction...)
Specialized stuff. When we're talking about feelings?...
No physician ever thought of creating some kind of think tank in order to coordinate or accommodate what people have to say to a broad public - people who, at some point in their lives, had to make a next-of-kin organ donation decision whatsoever ... To my knowledge, some French physicians have experienced this next-of-kin organ donation decision thing in their own flesh and family... How about them (or just one of them, remember the power of one...) setting up this kind of "think tank" I'm talking about? ... Or will the only echo we'll ever get to hear be Big Pharma's orchestrated speech in (forever and eternal) praise of organ "donation" (don't forget about the immuno drug money!)...
I've heard of some "ethical stuff" within public health care institution, called "Espace Ethique", but in my opinion they sound more like a bunch of wimpy academics (hardly a threat to mainstream politicians, and of course it's meant to be that way...)
Physicians in my family all think that the Doctors who provided me with some professional documents like the OPTIDO enquiry on organ donation did violate the Code of Medical Deontology.

And that such thing should never have been done... Oooops... Sure... It must have been an act of despair. Why not create some "think tank" on "the effects of organ donation" instead?...
Plus, it seems to me that family intimacy would be safer (in times of sorrow, this is of particular importance) in a think tank than on a blog or website where it would be... exposed (nobody likes that). Also, I'd be interested to hear what people have to say on 3D Bioprinting, on Health and Data...
French entrepreneur and businessman Xavier Niel (Free) has just launched a free programming school... He must be a Steve Jobs of some kind... 

My wild guess is that among French (European?) physicians, we don't have no Steve Jobs of any kind ...
Pic.

Gilles Babinet : "Everybody ought to be able to have a say in this digital world"...
 
==> Gilles Babinet : "Le plus grand nombre doit pouvoir prendre part aux opportunités de ce monde numérique". 

A grave organ shortage... aaaand a grave (brain) misunderstanding...

Is "brain death" a grave misunderstanding? 
"But Daaarling, where are you going? ..."
Why wait until death for organ donation, asks Canadian bioethicist

"More erosion of the dead donor rule in the latest issue of the Cambridge Journal of Healthcare Ethics. To the public, it probably seems axiomatic that vital organs should not removed until the donor is dead. But an increasing number of bioethicists are questioning this, especially in the light of grave organ shortages.
Walter Glennon, of the University of Calgary, breathes new life into the Epicurean argument that death does not matter: 'where death is, I am not; and where I am, death is not. So death is not to be feared, since it is nothing.'
Glennon examines the case of a severely brain-damaged patient. He argues: 'What matters is not that the donor is or is not dead, or when death is declared, but that the donor or a surrogate consents, that the donor has an irreversible condition with no hope of meaningful recovery, that procurement does not cause the donor to experience pain and suffering, and that the donor's intention is realized in a successful transplant.'
Paradoxically, he argues that doctors or relatives could actually be harming a live but brain-damaged patient if they do not allow organ donation. Harm, he says, is thwarting a person's interests. If a patient wanted to donate his organs, he would be harmed if they were not donated, or if they were unsuitable for donation because doctors waited for them to die first. 'We should reject the view that organ donors are beyond harm only after they have been declared dead and that they are harmed if organ procurement occurs before this time.'
If this is true, though, why can't people donate organs when they are well - perhaps as a way of committing suicide? Highly unlikely, Glennon responds. Such people would be irrational and hence not capable of the fundamental criterion, acting autonomously. 'It is usually the experience of an irreversible, hopeless condition that makes a person conclude that life is no longer worth living.'"

Source:  Bioedge.org

Questions hover over "brain death", says US bioethicist 

"The leading opponent of defining death as the death of the brain is D. Alan Shewmon, a professor of paediatric neurology at UCLA Medical Center. In the latest issue of the Journal of Medicine and Philosophy, an American bioethicist, E. Christian Brugger, defends him against a white paper written by the President's Council on Bioethics (PCB) in 2008.
Although the PCB was famed for its conservatism on many controversial bioethical issues and its sceptical attitude toward utilitarian reasoning, it defended the conventional standards for declaring that a patient is 'brain dead'. These are called the 'Harvard Criteria', after a 1983 paper written at Harvard Medical School. In summary, these are: unreceptivity and unresponsiveness, no movement or breathing, and no reflexes. Death was the moment 'at which the body's physiological system ceases to constitute an integrated whole'. In other words, because the brain is the integrator of all the body's systems, we know that death has occurred when these systems no longer work together.
Shewmon, however, pointed out that there are many cases in which the bodies of 'brain dead' patients - which fit the Harvard criteria - are still functioning as a whole. There have been well-documented cases of patients assimilating nutrients, fighting infections, maintaining homeostasis and body temperature, and even gestating fetuses and undergoing puberty. So, even if the brain were dead, the patients' bodies were still functioning as an integrated whole. In one astonishing case, a 'brain-dead' four-year-old boy lived on for 20 more years. He fought off serious infections and went through puberty before succumbing to pneumonia. An autopsy showed that his brain and brain stem had calcified; there were no neurons at all.
Brugger's article is too long to give an adequate summary of his doubts about the PCB's white paper. But he concludes that it failed to dismiss Shewmon's belief that the integrative capacity of a body is not located in the brain but is a property of the whole organism. If this is true, 'brain death' may not be the death of a person, only the death of an organ. 'Until these reasonable doubts are removed,' says Brugger, 'an ethically justified caution requires that we should treat them as living human beings.'"

Source:  Bioedge.org

Pic.

Stents et Data : le grand bazar bioéthique...

 WE OWN OUR HEALTH DATA. BIG PHARMA, MEDICAL ANALYSIS LABORATORIES, PHYSICIANS, PHARMACISTS DON'T.

Réglementation des dispositifs médicaux pour l'insuffisance cardiaque : les révélations d'un chirurgien... pas triste !

L'analyse très fine du système de santé français, par le Pr. Daniel Loisance, chirurgien cardiaque, Membre senior de l'Académie Nationale de Médecine, pointe les nombreux dysfonctionnements du fait de l'absence de ... données. Bricolage, approximations, travail en silos... Et cela ne vaut pas que pour les seules pathologies cardiaques. C'est l'ère de la médecine sur des post-it... Dossiers empilés, médecins hospitaliers débordés, nageant dans la paperasse (idem pour les patients). Est-ce encore de la science ? 

"Les médecins doivent avoir l'humilité de travailler sur des données, de collecter ces données ... Les moyens techniques existent aujourd'hui ; manquent les volontés pour le faire", dit le Professeur Loisance ... Les données confidentielles de nos comptes bancaires sont gérées sans aucun problème ... Commerce en ligne, achat par carte bancaire dans le monde entier ou presque, Amazonification de l'économie ... Tout cela, on sait faire ... Pourtant, on entend partout : "Les données santé (et donc leur confidentialité), c'est sacré". Faut-il mourir avec ? (tel l'Avare de Molière, qui veille sur son or) ... ou mourir ... de n'avoir pas partagé l'info (et si on l'avait fait, on aurait mieux soigné, on aurait été mieux soigné) ? Ce morcellement profite aux médecins libéraux, aux laboratoires pharmaceutiques, aux laboratoires d'analyses médicales ... bref à la médecine de papa d'hier - mais pas au patient d'aujourd'hui ... Pourtant, on veut lui fait croire le contraire (il n'est pas dupe). Les "lobbyistes" sont devenus très puissants ... et ils font du bon boulot ... Ceux qui tentent d'aller à l'encontre des schémas galvaudés (lavage de cerveau) mis en place pour que la population avale des couleuvres contraires à son intérêt sont broyés par le système, ou tout simplement ignorés (plus ou moins poliment). Cette maladie du lobbying par des conglomérats pour leurs seuls intérêts financiers (lobbying auprès des politiques et de la population) nous vient des USA ...

Data, le maître mot de la médecine de demain, qui se met en route aujourd'hui ... Big Data, Small Data... Capteurs, "sensors"... 

NOUS SOMMES LES PROPRIÉTAIRES DE NOS DONNES MÉDICALES. PAS LES PHARMACIENS NI LES LABOS PHARMACEUTIQUES NI LES LABOS D'ANALYSES MÉDICALES NI LES MÉDECINS... 

==> Être propriétaire de soi par Jacques Attali.

Les commentaires sur ce lien sont révélateurs : les gens n'ont pas d'opinion sur la question : "Est-ce nécessaire d'être propriétaire de soi ? Cela va-t-il changer le monde ?" Visiblement, ce n'est pas l'Europe qui va changer le monde ... Gros obstacles culturels (population et blouses blanches) ...

La médecine par les données ... Une révolution ... Pourtant, tout cela se prépare ... et si le chirurgien d'hier n'a pas toujours (et même rarement) su les recueillir, ces précieuses données, ni les interpréter, encore moins les utiliser, le patient de demain, lui, saura faire tout cela, à l'aide de son médecin ou chirurgien ... Il faut donc que nos aimables blouses blanches s'organisent ... L'échec d'hier (voir le lien ci-dessous) ne peut être celui de demain ... Les vendeurs de logiciels ont compris cela, déjà ... et nous concoctent ... la fin de l'univers de la santé organisé en silos ? ...

"La chirurgie cardiaque et l'évaluation des nouveaux dispositifs médicaux implantables. Audition au Sénat du Pr. Daniel Loisance, membre de l'Académie nationale de médecine, chirurgien cardiaque, ancien chef du service de chirurgie cardiaque de l'hôpital Henri-Mondor de Créteil (mai 2012)."

 ==> http://www.nossenateurs.fr/chantal-jouanno/dossier/35283

No Business Model for Digital Publishing of Books in France

Live from the Paris Book Fair March 22-25/2013:

Actually, I'm attending this book fair together with an expert in digital economics... As we are walking around and quickly exploring the various (countless) booths, we end up finding out something about e-books, eReaders, digital publishing... at the far end of the exhibition area...

The blunt truth is: there is absolutely no business model whatsoever for digital publishing of books here... The reason for this is because publishing houses (publishers 1.0) do not want to make money with e-publishing. They want to make money with paper books. Not with e-Books. I'm not sure I'd queue up for one hour (or more) just to have a copy of my favorite manga autographed...

Oh and by the way I got politely yelled at when taking this photo with my iPhone...  

"No photos of the author! No photos of the author!"

?!?... Er sorry I'm not gonna kill him... Just take some pic's for my blog... Er no my blog is NOT about porn or violence or child abuse or racial hatred... And uh... no I'm not gonna buy a copy of the Manga "Les vacances de Jésus et Bouddha" ("Saint Young Men") 'cause I travel a lot and hence need to download e-books on my eReader as much and as often as possible... I cannot afford buying loads of heavy books I 'll have to carry around with me...

I'm in touch with various authors (as a scenarist...) I've got their e-mail address and when writing to them I make sure I've got some interesting stuff for them (or at least I try to...)

So I'd rather receive an e-autograph (and a message!!!) from my favorite author... by mail or on my Facebook wall... than wait here for ages (they seem to think I need to cool my heels...), as there is so much stuff to see... and time passes so quickly... And please, Mr. Author-of-my-favorite-manga, don't mention any name ("For...") on my copy when signing it: I want to be able to sell a signed copy on Amazon for a better price... 'cause it's a signed copy ...

Of course a live chat with one's favorite author must be fascinating... But quite frankly, what can you tell to someone who has armies of "fans" waiting for him to sign their copy of his book as quick as possible, with plenty of noise all around? Nothing unforgettable, I guess... Some quick chit-chat perhaps... Probably nothing confidential or personal... Is this what books are about: superficial chit-chat? Authors should be able to set-up visio or video conferences with their fans whenever they feel they'd like to... without having to request their publisher's authorization (is that asking or begging? wait a minute: who brings the money here??). They shouldn't be prayed upon by some alleged "body guards"... They should be able to stage and do their own marketing... 'cause, pardon my French: I think that kind of marketing (see pic) sucks...

"No photos of the author! No photos of the author!"

Beauty and the Bust

Zoe Saldana and Neytiri

France, a Clockwork Orange

Bestseller Book at the Paris Book Fair...

"Internet et Santé"

At the Paris Book Fair (March 22-25/2013).

Eat, grieve, love

"The Sky is Everywhere"

Dying to meet YOU... over my Dead Body...


Time for your Minute Dose from this... Lethal Blog


Welcome ...

"La Révolution du logiciel libre"


"Manoeuvres et manipulations de l'industrie pharmaceutique"

In Big Pharma we Trust?...
Live from the Paris Book Fair (Porte de Versailles, Paris)... Actes Sud is a French Publisher. Jörg Blech is a German scientific journalist.


Acknowledgement

I couldn't possibly have ventured to write this blog without... this... Soo, thaaaank you, Ms Cressida Cowell!

cressida@cressidacowell.co.uk

"Born to Die"

Meet the Next-Gen Elton John... We already know Sir Elton Hercules John... Ladies and Gents, here's... Olympe ;-)



The whole transplant system needs to be disrupted, here's why

AUDIO VERSION (basically means I'm reading this Post): download audio file.  

Audio files on this blog are Windows files ; if you have a Mac, you might want to use VLC (http://www.videolan.org) to read them.

To start with, you need living organs from a "dead" person. Think. How dead can you be if your organs are still alive? The logic of "Brain death" is a "catch 22"one ... We shouldn't talk about organ donation. We should talk about sacrifice instead. Homo sacrificus: this is the foundation of organ transplant. Better leave that ugly truth unspoken...

The worst things happen when you make someone believe he's entitled (has the right) to have something (a vital organ from somebody else) and he ends up not having it, while others end up having it... Because of the immuno drug money (Big Pharma), propaganda says transplant is "standard procedure" medicine, and everybody should be granted the right to standard medicine, of course... For the sake of big (pharma) money, you create situations of unbearable frustrations... People do go mad... I've seen the wife of a kidney transplant patient. Well she used to be a collegue of mine... The patient died after FIVE kidney transplants... The couple's life was hell... But now he's dead (what a relief?) and his wife keeps harping on the same string, complaining that people are not generous... and that it's a shame... Had her husband been able to get a 6th kidney from somebody else, he'd still be alive... The woman hates anybody who won't approve blindly and hastily and say: "Yes, yes, of course, you're sooo right! Shame, shame! Blame the egoistic people, dying with their organs..."

I know a transplant surgeon in France (Strasbourg). He keeps calling patients waiting for a transplant in the middle of the night: "You need to be here right now! We've got a dead person!" - a "catch 22" "brain dead" person, that is, his or her family (next of kin) haven't even had time to give consent to organ donation, they don't even realize their beloved one is "catch 22 dead" - that is: dying, they are just in a state of shock. Then, still in the middle of the night, the very sick transplant patient (a woman) frantically makes a round of phone calls: "I'll get MY new kidney (liver/lungs...) I'll be able to pick up Amy from school very soon!!!" before rushing to hospital (with her husband)... Then, at around 6.00 AM, while they're uncomfortably (waiting for someone to FINALLY die) seated in some kind of anonymous waiting room (and have been waiting for a while), some nurse will inform them that the vital organs are being transplanted right now into some ...other people's body... Not hers... The sad truth is the woman is already too sick for the transplant to work...But nobody will tell her. PEOPLE NEED HOPE... SO GIVE THEM HELL... In the gloomy early morning, the couple (a nervous wreck) drive back home, saying: "We'd have been better off sleeping in our bed..."

I could tell you thousands of true stories like this one. Sorry stories...

Anyway, this reminds me of last year's Google new Phone, released to the market in November 2012. Only there were very few of those. Google got out of stock very quickly (within a few days or hours). Restocking only took place end of February 2013. In between, people went mad. THEY JUST WENT MAD WITH FRUSTRATION. It was only a phone, and the waiting period only lasted for a few month...

The hole transplant system reminds me of that story called: how to kill a frog. Pretty easy. Put it in lukewarm water, it won't escape. Then gradually increase the water's temperature. The frog will be dead before it knows it... See? Awfully easy...

Now I know some transplant surgeons in my family will read this "Post" and yell at me: "STOP THAT FROGGY BUSINESS!"

"Excuse me!", says Big Bang Theory's Sheldon Cooper... "Whose froggy business are we talking about?"

[Pic.]

Japan: "Spring is Coming"

How cute is that?...

"L'Aigle noir"



Couldn't resist singing along... here's the audio file...

Audio files on this blog are Windows files ; if you have a Mac, you might want to use VLC (http://www.videolan.org) to read them.
Concernant les fichiers son ou audio (audio files) sur ce blog : ce sont des fichiers Windows ; pour les lire sur Mac, il faut les ouvrir avec VLC (http://www.videolan.org).

Major Drugmakers in Crisis. Invention, Innovation, Disruption.

Big Pharma's European branches of R&D (innovation) close down... one after the other... Downsizing is the mantra. Even for smaller companies, like BMS... Drugmakers are facing an unprecedented crisis... For the two last decades, they haven't come up with innovative drugs; plenty of "Blockbuster drugs"; though we can hardly talk about any breakthrough ... the old, once highly profitable drugs have already fallen into the public domain or will do so pretty soon (2014 for some drugs). Big Pharma is targeting "Oncology" drugs as the new goose that lays the golden eggs (huge profit margins!) but again some nurses using these very expensive drugs on patients with terminal cancer have reported some ethical issues... as some of those very expensive drugs used in oncology can be toxic for nurses: "Nurses Exposed to Toxic Cancer Drugs, Study Finds"

Sooner or later, the truth on Big Pharma (How Modern Medicine is Making People Sick) will out... Plus I'm not sure transplant patient will like the news: no more R&D on immunosuppressive drugs because Big Pharma is downsizing...

 

AstraZeneca to axe 1,600 jobs in overhaul of drug R&D: 

 

"The move will see the end of drug development at AstraZeneca's Alderley Park facility in northwest England, for many years a hub of the group's research and development (R&D) efforts, the drugmaker said on Monday." (read here)

Anyway, what's eating Big Pharma Innovators? 

That said, Big Pharma and Big Biotech – let’s call them Big PharmaTech for short – are nothing if not cunning. Big Biotech and Big Pharma: no place to hide?

 

Small is beautiful... 

Looking for innovative small-cap biotech companies?

 

http://www.fastcompany.com/most-innovative-companies/2012/industry/biotech

 

http://www.biotechnologyforums.com/thread-1755.html

 

... And this: http://www.smallbiotech.org/

 

And then, I guess... some biohackers will disrupt the whole thing... 3D bioprinting will allow just anybody to print out body parts, human material (bones, skin, corneas, muscles, trachea, kidneys, hearts, etc.)

To be continued...

(Pic.)

Welcome!



All you need to know about me (author of this blog)...

I live in New-Zealand (Wellington and Auckland), where I work as a (Wellywood) scenarist and I do have a passion for trees and forests... and books... My family are scattered around the world, which I guess makes me a frequent traveller (thank you Emirates Airlines!): NY, Malaysia (Kuala Lumpur, Ipoh), Monaco and Provence, Berlin (well I haven't been in Germany for a while, actually...)

I'm just another passionate story teller (plenty of us all around the world)... Love telling other people's story (mine is too ordinary)... Surrounded by geeks, I do have plenty to tell... Imagine that Indian guy from "Life of Pi" - er actually I'm only that narrator guy - living with Big Bang Theory's Leonard and Sheldon...

French-born; in love with languages... and words... My favorites languages are English and oral Mandarin Chinese... I'll need another life to learn how to write Chinese characters... well I do recognize a few, but... Ended up as a Post-Graduate in German literature just because I was fascinated by books by Thomas Mann and other German "romantic" authors...

My favorite obsessions:
- browsing bookshops all around the world, in megacities and smaller towns... taking snapshots of books with my iPhone (book covers, that is) until I'm told: "Please, no more photos..." - or, on a couple of occasions: "Thank you for loving books so much": Blackwell's in Oxford, UK and Kinokuniya Malaysia in Kuala Lumpur, Mr. B's Emporium of Reading Delights in Bath, UK, or Librairie le Phénix, Paris, Whitcoulls in Auckland-Henderson...
- listening to soundtracks of "Musicals"... Like "Memphis", "The Phantom of the Opera", "Love Never Dies", "Once", "The Book of Mormon", "Monkey King", "Les Miz", "Chicago", "Wicked"... I'm fascinated by interpretes, and by TV shows on innovation, like Disney's Phineas and Ferb...

Most of all, I like sharing and positive thinking... Well, that's all folks!

YOUR e-mails are always welcome! Please send them at cath.coste@laposte.net

The unspoken truth about organ donation

I'll soon post here my review of this book... If you already have one, please do send your contribution over here...

"Organspende - die verschwiegene Wahrheit" by Richard Fuchs

Invention, Innovation, Disruption


"How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia", a Novel by Mohsin Hamid

"Publisher synopsis: How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia is Mohsin Hamid's spectacular, thought-provoking novel of modern Asia. In this keenly-awaited follow-up to his bestselling The Reluctant Fundamentalist, Mohsin Hamid confirms his place as a radically inventive story-teller with his finger on the world's pulse. The astonishing and riveting tale of a man's journey from impoverished rural boy to corporate tycoon, it steals its shape from the business self-help books devoured by youths all over 'rising Asia'. It follows its nameless hero to the sprawling metropolis where he begins to amass an empire built on the most fluid and increasingly scarce of goods: water. Yet his heart remains set on something else, on the pretty girl whose star rises alongside his, their paths crossing and re-crossing in a love affair sparked and snuffed out again by the forces that careen their fates along. The hero of the story could be any one of us, hungry for a different life. And ours too could be the fate that awaits him...Fast-paced, vivid and emotionally absorbing, How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia creates two unforgettable characters who find moments of transcendent intimacy in the midst of shattering change."

Praise for How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia: "Even more intriguing, compelling and moving than The Reluctant Fundamentalist. A marvellous book". (Philip Pullman). "This brilliantly structured, deeply felt book is written with the confidence and bravura of a man born to write. Hamid is at the peak of his considerable powers here, and delivers a tightly paced, preternaturally wise book about a thoroughly likable, thoroughly troubled striver in the messiest, most chaotic ring of global economy. Completely unforgettable". (Dave Eggers). "Mohsin Hamid is one of the best writers in the world, period. Only a master could have written this propulsive tale of a striver living on the knife's edge, a noir Horatio Alger story for our frenetic, violent times". (Ben Fountain). "Written in the most compelling second person since Jay McInerney's Bright Lights, Big City, with which it also shares a sharp take on our frenetic, urban lives, Hamid's novel proves that the most compelling fiction today is coming from South Asia". (Daily Beast). Mohsin Hamid is the author of The Reluctant Fundamentalist and Moth Smoke. His fiction has been adapted for the cinema, translated into over 30 languages, received numerous awards, and been shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize. He has contributed essays and short stories to publications such as the Guardian, The New York Times, Financial Times, Granta, and the New Yorker. Born and mostly raised in Lahore, he spent part of his childhood in California, studied at Princeton University and Harvard Law School, and has since lived between Lahore, London and New York."

Source:
http://www.mrbsemporium.com/index.php/books/9780241144664/how_to_get_filthy_rich_in_rising_asia

Health made in the USA

"What Makes Healthcare So Expensive?" Check out this infographic: http://healthland.time.com/2013/02/20/what-makes-health-care-so-expensive/
Health made in the USA: "It's based on making profits not patient outcomes; pay is based on fee for services; costs for uninsured are built in; peoples stock portfolios consisting of mostly pharmaceutical companies, and doctors handing out 'magic pills' without addressing underlying issues, etc...It's not going to be an easy fix, but we CAN do it if we work together!" (Kim Walker, Facebook, March 18th, 2013).

Learn more here...

Closed-door medicine VS Health 2.0: guess who wins...

I'm back in France for a short while... It's cold here, while we've had a few drought episodes in New-Zealand (until yesterday actually... Don't forget it's summertime for us lucky Kiwis...). I've just had a meeting with French physicians, most of them are liberal doctors in a couple of posh parisian suburbs (not the rioters' suburbs)... Some of them are retired surgeons. The vast majority of their children (young adults) have landed their (supposedly) dream job with Dior or Big Pharma... Yet all those priviledged MD's (all in their mid-fifties, some of them retired) kept complaining about virtually everything and everybody in France: our politicians, our health system, the people, the economics, etc. Everything has gone to the dogs... Former President Chirac used to be a communist, many people are communists in France, we'll soon get a Moslem President, while every fifth student will be the victim of an education in catastrophic decline... And so on and on and on...

Then I turned to these guys (no women at all in the assembly...) and said: "Yeah, sure, couldn't agree more, that's why I left the country some time ago... Yet I'd like to ask you something. You sound pretty much like a tenant who is about to leave the apartment (or flat) he's stayed in for decades... and keeps complaining that the flat's not as beautiful and enjoyable as it used to be in the first place... There's moisture in the bathroom on the walls, smoke eaters and grease filters in all the rooms (especially in the kitchen, where grease filters are full and can hold no more) are no longer doing their job (did anybody ever clean one of them in the first place?); from the old style parquet, only one thing remains: it's old... It looks old, it smells old, it feels old... and so do the carpet and the various rugs... "As for the plumbing, well, don't get me started on that!", says the infuriated tenant... who keeps blaming all these calamities on the landlord... just like you, a smart bunch of Physicians, keep blaming everything on our politicians... So here's my question, guys: what did you do to prevent this from happening? Ever felt like you were in charge of the maintenance and repair of your apartment? My point being: don't we get the politicians and the journalists we deserve? (Physicians love to say: "Oh, our journalists do suck, all of them, no exception!")...

Would you like to hear about the conclusion of that meeting? I said I didn't feel responsible for all this... since, unlike them, I haven't been the lucky tenant of that once posh apartment for decades...

Oh, by the way, did you know that with a 3D printer, you can print humble garden gnomes? (read here).

What music are you listening to right now?


James Bond goes 2.0: Agent 007 will teach YOU about Genomics

Mind blowing indeed! James Bond goes 2.0 and as a result, Agent 007 is teaching us about genomics... for free, open to all! Thank you Billaut San...

Welcome to 7.00x, "Thee" Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on Genomics, FREE AND OPEN TO ALL!

edX is a Mooc that was created by Harvard and the MIT. Want to know how this works? Then how about following the e-footsteps of Eric Lander PhD, one of the leaders of the Human Genome Project - I can't wait for him to get a Nobel Prize for that...

No fees, no selection... But you'll have to put your back into it: this MOOC is an online seminar that will require from you an 8-hour-work per week for 3 months...



Find out more and register here!

Source: https://www.edx.org/courses/MITx/7.00x/2013_Spring/about

Ethics 2.0

You should definitely take a look at this website regarding "brain death" controversies (in French) : http://transplantation.unblog.fr/2012/04

For English Version click here.

http://www.initiative-kao.de/a-tesnieres-report.html





Critical Information about Organ Transplantation

"Is an organ donor dead immediately before the removal operation or is he a living being without provable brain function? Experts from medicine, law, and theology have opposite views about this issue. 97% of the organism is still alive when 'brain death' is diagnosed and death is certified. Everybody should know that and come to a decision of his own on the basis of these facts. We are an initiative founded by parents. We consented to the organ removal of our children, after their serious accidents, without knowing then what organ removal means. After our children were buried we realized what we had given our consent to. We realized that living organs cannot be taken from persons who are really dead. That's why we deeply regret our decision. One of the consequences of our consent was that we left our dying children unprotected when they needed our care and love most. Instead we entrusted them to the transplant surgeons - later we got the impression that our chil-dren had been treated just like recycling material.
As a result of our bitter experience we want to inform the public about these facts so that parents in the same situation might be protected from being confronted with organ donation uninformed.
We want to help people get fully informed so that they can take a well-founded decision - if necessary."



Kritische Informationen über Organtransplantation, Organspende und Hirntod:

"Ist ein Organspender unmittelbar vor der Organentnahme eine Leiche oder ein Lebender ohne messbare Hirnfunktion? In dieser Frage nehmen Fachleute aus Medizin, Rechtswesen und Theologie gegensätzliche Positionen ein. Das deutsche Transplantationsgesetz hat diesen Konflikt nicht gelöst. Schließlich leben 97% des Organismus zu diesem Zeitpunkt noch. Dieser Tatsache muss sich jeder bewusst sein und sich vor diesem Hintergrund eine eigene Meinung bilden. Kritische Aufklärung über Organtransplantation e.V. (KAO) ist eine Initiative, gegründet von Eltern, die ihre verunglückten Kinder zur Organspende freigegeben haben, ohne die Hintergründe zu diesem Zeitpunkt genau genug zu kennen. Erst nachdem unsere Kinder beerdigt waren, haben wir begriffen, wozu wir ja gesagt hatten. Wir haben begriffen, dass lebende Organe nicht von Menschen entnommen werden können, die so tot sind, wie wir es uns vorgestellt hatten. Wir haben unsere Entscheidung daher bitter bereut. Durch unsere Zustimmung waren unsere Kinder in ihrem Sterbeprozess, in dem sie unserer besonderen Liebe bedurften, ungeschützt alleingelassen und einer Organentnahme überantwortet, die uns hinterher wie das Ausschlachten eines Autowracks erschien.
In dieser Situation haben wir uns entschlossen, durch Aufklärung dazu beizutragen, dass andere Eltern unter ähnlichen Umständen davor bewahrt werden, unvorbereitet wie wir mit der Frage der Organspende konfrontiert zu werden." http://www.initiative-kao.de/index.html

 

"Cloud Atlas", the film I'm in love with

I loved the book, and was thrilled to see what a bunch of über-gifted scenarists would come up with in a movie... Good Lord, this is high carat gold jewellery... gave me goosebumps... Such richly and finely intertwined characters and plots - even the novel's fans will have missed out on some of the incredibly numerous and subtle connections in the movie... I made a first attempt at watching the movie alone, but ended up giving up on it 'cause I was quite at a loss with all those too subtle (highbrow?) connections... Then I watched that movie again, this time making sure my co-scenarist and my husband (an expert on the novel) were watching too, sitting with me... We interrupted the film on various occasions, listening to my husband's explanations about the book (very helpful to better understand the film) and making conjectures: who was linked to whom etc. As you can see, we spared no effort... However the three of us discovered in the end that we'd all been missing out on some connections - that is: in the end, as we finally get to see all the actors and actresses (well not as many as you might think when you see the film) and the various characters they've been incarnating... So yes: we had to play that final part (film credits within the film) over (and over) again... Actors are playing a whole variety of men and women's parts across the ages, same goes for actresses... Forget about the obvious and clean... 



Our verdict (as self-proclaimed experts on the movie "Cloud Atlas"): splendid casting, splendidly used... In the novel, the connections made between each story tend to be tenuous, suggestive, rather than obvious and clean. In the movie, the connections are made so tenuous and suggestive that... it's no longer a movie. It's premium quality artcraft of some kind...

This film is a unique experience... It feels like a world literature masterpiece that you would be watching instead of reading... Its beauty (some will say philosophy) is complex, not eager to reveal itself to any random person... You've got to deserve it, this will require all your attention and even more than that, but it never shrinks to Parisianism. 

It's art all right. AND it's entertainment for the broader public all right.

Two momentums:

Neo Seoul, (Korea), 2144: "Sonmi-451, a genetically-engineered fabricant (clone) server at a restaurant, is interviewed before her execution. She recounts how she was released from her compliant life of servitude by Commander Hae-Joo Chang, a member of a rebel movement known as "Union". (...). The Union rebels reveal to her that fabricants like her are killed and 'recycled' into food for future fabricants. She decides that the system of society based on slavery and exploitation of fabricants is intolerable, and is brought to Hawaii to make a public broadcast of her story and manifesto. Hae-Joo is killed in a firefight and Sonmi is captured. After telling her story and its intent, she is executed." (Wikipedia). But Sonmi will be adored like Jesus Christ and thanks to her, slavery of clones and machines will finally be abolished just the way things have worked for "American Negroes" in the past... (Pic.)

San Francisco, California, 1973: "Journalist Luisa Rey meets (...) Sixsmith, (...) a nuclear physicist. Sixsmith tips off Rey to a conspiracy regarding the safety of a new nuclear reactor run by Lloyd Hooks, but is assassinated by Hooks' hitman Bill Smoke before he can give her a report that proves it. (...). Isaac Sachs, another scientist at the power plant passes her a copy of Sixsmith's report. However, Smoke assassinates Sachs and also runs Rey's car off a bridge. With help from the plant's head of security, Joe Napier, she evades another attempt against her life which results in Smoke's death, and exposes the plot to use a nuclear accident for the benefit of oil companies." (Wikipedia). Pic.

"Tu seras une femme, ma fille."

"Si tu peux voir mourir une grande histoire d’amour
Sans refermer ton cœur pour qu’il aime à nouveau
Ou te savoir trahie sans trahir à ton tour
T'en aller pour voler plus haut ;

Si tu peux tout donner sans te perdre pourtant
Si tu peux être douce sans jamais te soumettre
Apprécier, célébrer, admirer ton amant
Sans jamais faire de lui ton maître ;

Si tu peux ignorer les langues de vipères
Les jalouses, les méchantes occupées à médire
Et entendre derrière leurs discours de mégères
Une mysère à n’en plus finir ;

Si tu peux être belle sans jamais être fière
Faire de ta vérité, l’essence de ta beauté
Si tu peux préserver un peu de ton mystère
Ne pas tout dire ni tout livrer ;

Si tu sais accueillir et ouvrir ta maison
Sans jamais t’entourer de quelque vaine cour
Aimer à la folie pour trouver la raison
Parler sans n’être que discours ;

Si tu peux être pure sans jamais être sage
Si tu peux être forte sans refermer ton cœur
Si tu sais être tendre, si tu sais être orage
Sans jamais faire reines tes humeurs ;

Si tu peux affronter le temps sans faire naufrage
Sans te sentir déchue ni même destituée,
Si tu trouves ton chant au plein cœur de chaque âge
Quand les autres s’abîment à le nier

Alors, Reines et Déesses, Vénus et Madonnes
Te feront révérence et seront ta famille
Et tu te trouveras dans l’amour que tu donnes
Tu seras une femme, ma fille."

Fabienne Marsaudon
http://www.fabienne-marsaudon.com


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"The Reluctant Fundamentalist"

"Mohsin Hamid's first novel, Moth Smoke, dealt with the confluence of personal and political themes, and his second, The Reluctant Fundamentalist, revisits that territory in the person of Changez, a young Pakistani. Told in a single monologue, the narrative never flags. Changez is by turns naive, sinister, unctuous, mildly threatening, overbearing, insulting, angry, resentful, and sad. He tells his story to a nameless, mysterious American who sits across from him at a Lahore cafe. Educated at Princeton, employed by a first-rate valuation firm, Changez was living the American dream, earning more money than he thought possible, caught up in the New York social scene and in love with a beautiful, wealthy, damaged girl. The romance is negligible; Erica is emotionally unavailable, endlessly grieving the death of her lifelong friend and boyfriend, Chris. Changez is in Manila on 9/11 and sees the towers come down on TV. He tells the American, '...I smiled. Yes, despicable as it may sound, my initial reaction was to be remarkably pleased... I was caught up in the symbolism of it all, the fact that someone had so visibly brought America to her knees...' When he returns to New York, there is a palpable change in attitudes toward him, starting right at immigration. His name and his face render him suspect.
Ongoing trouble between Pakistan and India urge Changez to return home for a visit, despite his parents' advice to stay where he is. While there, he realizes that he has changed in a way that shames him. 'I was struck at first by how shabby our house appeared... I was saddened to find it in such a state... This was where I came from... and it smacked of lowliness.' He exorcises that feeling and once again appreciates his home for its 'unmistakable personality and idiosyncratic charm.' While at home, he lets his beard grow. Advised to shave it, even by his mother, he refuses. It will be his line in the sand, his statement about who he is. His company sends him to Chile for another business valuation; his mind filled with the troubles in Pakistan and the U.S. involvement with India that keeps the pressure on. His work and the money he earns have been overtaken by resentment of the United States and all it stands for.
Hamid's prose is filled with insight, subtly delivered: 'I felt my age: an almost childlike twenty-two, rather than that permanent middle-age that attaches itself to the man who lives alone and supports himself by wearing a suit in a city not of his birth.' In telling of the janissaries, Christian boys captured by Ottomans and trained to be soldiers in the Muslim Army, his Chilean host tells him: 'The janissaries were always taken in childhood. It would have been far more difficult to devote themselves to their adopted empire, you see, if they had memories they could not forget.' Changez cannot forget, and Hamid makes the reader understand that--and all that follows." --Valerie Ryan. Amazon.

"People help the people"

"Bucket list of an idiot"

"Brave or crazy? Dom Harvey proves that he's both by letting his friends and family set him a bucket list of mad tasks.

Hello, my name is Dominic Harvey and I am an idiot.

Ever since the movie The Bucket List came out in 2008, people have been creating their own lists of things to do before they kick the bucket. Some of the things on these lists look so difficult that I wonder if dying would be a better option than actually ticking off the items. The purpose of these lists seems to be to make the list maker feel like they are doing something more with their life than sitting around writing lists and watching Morgan Freeman DVDs.

I am a paid-up life-member of a place called the comfort zone. People always go on about the importance of getting out of your comfort zone. Not me. Any day I can stay inside it is a good day. All of which makes it a bit odd that I decided to complete a bucket list of my own. Not just any bucket list though. This is a reverse bucket list - a bunch of stuff that I could have happily passed away without ever doing - stuff like getting a tattoo I’d instantly regret, arm wrestling an All Black and being the model for a life drawing class - and I recruited some of my closest family and friends to compile it for me. In hindsight, this was a bad idea. But here it is - my pain, discomfort and humiliation for your pleasure - The Bucket List of an Idiot." (Amazon)

"The AirBnB Advantage: How to avoid competition and become a multi-billion dollar startup"


"This is a guest post by Sangeet Paul Choudary, who analyzes business models for internet startups at his blog Platformed.info. He is the author of the forthcoming book, Platform Thinking. You can follow Sangeet on Twitter at @sanguit."

"Technology startups are disruptive because they are driven by a desire to solve an unsolved problem in a unique way and create new value. Most large and established companies, in contrast, are driven by a desire to defeat competition and protect their market turf.

Consider the problem of traveller accommodation. A regular hotel chain would go around studying its competition. It would create a set of features that differentiate it from competition. Finally, it would try to find ways of drawing customers away from competition leveraging these features.
AirBnB did none of those things. In fact, AirBnB applied Platform Thinking to solve the problem of traveller accommodation. It didn’t compete on features. Instead, it created a platform that allowed anyone with a spare room, apartment or island to start running a B&B with access to a global market of travelers.

 

Platform Competition

 

An Apple TM a day keeps the doctors away...

...or can bring patients and doctors together...

"What can Apple bring to the table, er, wrist, that Timex and any one of hundreds of cheap watches don’t already provide consumers?
That’s the question Harvard Business Review’s H. James Wilson asks today, and he comes up with a fascinating answer.
The iWatch, he says, won’t actually be a watch at all.

'Using evidence and a bit of logic,' says Wilson, 'I bet the iWatch will be much less a time piece and much more platform for auto-analytics and managing yourself.'
He points to the growing trend of devices on Apple Store walls that actually measure our own bodies, tracking our stats, and other wearable tech. There are things like Fitbits, Nike Fuelbands, and iHealth scales and blood pressure monitors hanging right up there with the earpods, iPhone cases, and (yes) iPod nano wristwatch bands.

Apple’s strength in designing products that we don’t even know we need lies in its ability to simplify complicated sources of information into a cohesive display or operating system. There are a ton of analytics floating about out there, including our schedules, our contacts, our health data, and our connections to other people. Imagine putting all of these sources of info into one place. With an iWatch, says Wilson, Apple can do the same thing, can 'make users’ experience of time more intimate by tying it to who they are and what they care about.'"

And to their health profile...

Hobbit 2.0

Welcome to the "Digital Spring Quest"... You're just a Hobbit citizen... Not a hero, not a warrior, you're not even a burglar, nor are you an Arab woman in Egypt or in Iraq or in Iran... Maybe you're a Kiwi-Hobbit, but not necessarily... However, you can start the Quest "Hobbit 2.0" with an "Arab Spring Quest" - or, for that matter, with a Chinese one, with a dragon to fight - that is, if you'd like... My point being: as a citizen of the Shire, you intend to defend your rights... 
This is where the Quest "Hobbit 2.0" begins: you're at home, sitting at your desk, behind your computer...


 You can fight for your own rights, or for other people's rights, or both... It's just up to you... In this Quest, involving a Hobbit 2.0 and an Iraqi woman, all you need on both sides is a computer and a working internet connection (this can be quite the challenge)...

"A London mum and Iraqi teacher should have nothing in common. Yet now, despite their differences, they're the firmest of friends . . . Talking About Jane Austen in Baghdad by Bee Rowlatt [Hobbit 2.0 living in London] and May Witwit [Iraqi woman in 2006] is a touching and poignant portrait of an unlikely friendship.Would you brave gun-toting militias for a cut and blow dry? May's a tough-talking, hard-smoking, lecturer in English. She's also an Iraqi from a Sunni-Shi'ite background living in Baghdad, dodging bullets before breakfast, bargaining for high heels in bombed-out bazaars and battling through blockades to reach her class of Jane Austen-studying girls. Bee, on the other hand, is a London mum of three, busy fighting off PTA meetings and chicken pox, dealing with dead cats and generally juggling work and family while squabbling with her globe-trotting husband over the socks he leaves lying around the house.They should have nothing in common.But when a simple email brings them together, they discover a friendship that overcomes all their differences of culture, religion and age. Talking About Jane Austen in Baghdad is the story of two women who share laughter and tears, and swap their confidences, dreams and fears. And, between the grenades, the gossip, the jokes and the secrets, they also hatch an ingenious plan to help May escape the bombings of Baghdad . . .Bee Rowlatt is a former show-girl turned BBC World Service journalist. A mother of three and would-be do-gooder, she can find keeping her career going while caring for her three daughters (and husband) pretty tough, even in leafy North London. May Witwit is an Iraqi expert in Chaucer and sender of emails depicting kittens in fancy dress. She is prepared to face every hazard imaginable to make that all-important hairdresser's appointment." (Amazon)