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# [Beowulf] Wired article about Go machine

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Joshua Baker-LePain jlb17 at duke.edu
Thu Mar 26 08:54:04 PDT 2009

On Thu, 26 Mar 2009 at 10:42am, Robert G. Brown wrote

> On Thu, 26 Mar 2009, Leif Nixon wrote:

>> As in health-care. Which is why you get hospitals with
>> Conficker/Downadup running rampant through medical equipment with
>> embedded Windows systems. Basically, you're not allowed to patch them
>> without FDA approval.
>>
>> That's scary.
>
> Um, I don't believe that this is the case, and I say this as a semi-pro
> consultant in health care.  Most hospitals probably do something along
> these lines as part of the standard CYA, but the regulations, especially
> HIPAA, are "due diligence" recommendations with an amazing {\em lack} of
> specification.  You can pretty much do whatever you like, but heaven
> confidentiality.  At the very least you'd better be able to show that
> you tried hard to keep things secure...

Note that Leif mentioned medical equipment with embedded Windows systems.
And he's right -- you're not allowed to touch the software build on those
without getting the new build approved by the FDA (at least, not if you
want to use said equipment on real live patients).  And those machines are
generally networked so that the data (images, e.g.) can be uploaded.  It
is very, very scary.  Why anyone ever made the decision to run medical
equipment on Windows (over the screams of the engineering team) is utterly
beyond me.

--
Joshua Baker-LePain