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January 1993


On April 5, 1994, First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton and Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan (D-NY) visited the Northeastern Parallel Architectures Center (NPAC), the CRPC's site at Syracuse University, to witness how InfoMall is helping to integrate today's promising high-performance computing and communications (HPCC) technologies for important applications in industry.

During the visit, Geoffrey Fox, NPAC Director and a CRPC Executive Committee member, demonstrated for the First Lady and Sen. Moynihan an experimental "telemedicine" system running over NYNEX's NYNet, one of the first ATM (Asynchronous Transfer Mode) networks in the world. ATM is a relatively new communications technology that provides high performance and reliability.

Through the use of this telemedicine system, Dr. Frank Smith, a pediatric cardiologist at the SUNY Health Science Center, demonstrated how doctors could eventually use this technology to analyze multimedia information on patients at remote locations. Dr. Smith communicated face -to-face via workstations connected on NYNET with a doctor 50 miles away at Rome (NY) Laboratory. Simultaneously, the doctors viewed and reviewed on-screen the ultrasound image of a child's heart and a videotape of the child's physical condition. Fox said that high-speed computer networks such as NYNET will allow doctors to move all sorts of information and images back and forth over great distances. "I pointed out to the First Lady the ways in which her program on health care will be helped by the proposed information superhighway," said Fox. "She seemed very interested in what we were doing here."

Other HPCC applications for health care were demonstrated. Dr. Smith previewed the prototype of a multimedia regional medical consultation system. Also, Richard A. Johnson of Booz-Allen & Hamilton demonstrated how massively parallel processing could be used for health-care fraud detection, as well as credit-card and security fraud detection. The National Health Care Anti-Fraud Association estimates that up to 10 percent of the cost of America's $900 billion health-care industry is based upon detecting fraudulent activity.

InfoMall is an alliance of 50 corporations, universities, and economic development organizations that aims to develop and apply software for HPCC technologies to the competitive benefit of American businesses. (For more information on InfoMall, see the October 1993 issue of Parallel Computing Research.) In addition to offering demonstrations for the First Lady, InfoMall has recently been nominated for the 1994 Computerworld Smithsonian Award, a prestigious award that honors organizations or individuals that are changing society through the use of information technology.

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