Posts Tagged ‘iPad’

Please Touch the Demo

June 4, 2014

We have had a few interested clients recently and one thing I have realized is invaluable is that we let them touch our demo.


If you would like a live demo where you can  be in the driver’s seat, send us an email at or request one here.


Some companies seem to think this might hinder their attempts to keep their intellectual property private, but to us, non-touch demos are more of a speed bump.

I have been on many remote-desktop call demos, where a salesperson walks through a pre-written script of the product. I might ask “Can you click on that? I just want to see what it does” or “what happens if you right click there? No, not there, yes, a little higher… There!”

These screen-demos are frustrating and convey a small fraction of what can be illustrated by letting the user create their own orders, drag their own treatment schedules around, modify their own doses (and propagate the changes), maybe even send themselves a real fax!  The user can also get a feel for the responsiveness of the system and experience it as they would after they sign up.

Concerned about using Firefox on Ubuntu? Safari on Mac OS?  Let’s put those concerns to rest with a live demo where you are using Ankhos exactly as you would in your practice!  We can even break out your iPad!

There are benefits of this to us, as well. We get to see what uninitiated users might be confused about; what could be made more clear.  Perhaps the user is keeping in mind all of the things they can do in their current EMR system and can let us know what features could be added to satisfy their needs. It is much easier for a potential customer to wow themselves with a touchable demo than to hear us say how great Ankhos is.

So if you would like a live, clickable demo of Ankhos, please send us an email at and hopefully we can let you experience the ‘Wow’ for yourself.


Toshiba Excite delivers

July 12, 2012

In the past, we have experimented with using iPads for providers when seeing patients and in the lab area to track patients.  Ankhos is a ‘web’ app, meaning it can be loaded with any browser but some work better than others. We have optimized for Google Chrome so we are prioritizing a browser that uses the Webkit rendering engine, which the iPad’s Safari does.

As many other EMR companies have found, the iPad turned out to be great for viewing data and performing simple tasks. However, the iPad is inadequate for typing MD notes, making  inpatient orders or really typing of any kind.

Enter the new Toshiba Excite 10 inch tablet (Engadget review).  I bought one of these for my personal use a few weeks ago and loved it. Naturally, the first thing I did was load Ankhos in Chrome. Amazing.  It’s smart enough to know when you want to drag and when you want to scroll . The javascript widgets we use render quickly and it is generally more responsive. It responds to user input even through latex gloves. You still wouldn’t want to type a lengthy document on it.

We only have one in the office (for now) and we are testing it in the ‘chemo hood’.  The chemo hood is an protected, ventilated workspace for mixing toxic chemotherapy drugs.

Chemotherapy mixing hood

Chemotherapy is mixed and bagged in a ventilated area

It’s a pain to get in and out of the hood to check doses and document who mixed the chemo and when.  By putting a tablet inside the hood (which stays there), we can let the mixer do their documentation in Ankhos without leaving her workspace.

I can’t wait to get a few more and see how they fare with MD order entry and short notes.

Re-Re-Thinking the iPad

October 18, 2010

A few of the users at Carolina Oncology Specialists have been persistent about using the iPad. It’s exceedingly long battery life and relatively light weight have proven to be big advantages compared to other form factors.  We did find that a non-slip case that also provides a stand is essential.


So the iPad is back on.  We now have a two-factor setup in the office now for the physicians. The first is a kiosk-type style with a widescreen monitor in the main hub.   The other is the iPad; users are encouraged to use what comes naturally to them and so far, this is the setup that has evolved.


And, of course, Ankhos is a web (browser)-based app, so any computer with an internet browser on the internal network can access the application.  This allows great flexibility for our our users to evolve how and where they interact with the program.


This sort of thing is another reason I love my users. They are persistent in discovering what will work best for them and provide feedback that allows me to accommodate it.  It only took a few tweaks to get the iPad working like they wanted, then they were off and running.



Next up? Android and Windows tablets…. Let’s get ready to rumble.

Re-thinking the iPad for EMR

September 15, 2010

After a few weeks of evaluation, it is the general consensus that the iPad is not right for most functions of Ankhos. There are a few users who prefer them (mostly nurses who are always mobile) but the iPad just leaves too much to be desired in the way of displaying and entering large amounts of information quickly.

The iPad also does some frustrating this with data entry, such as capitalizing every text field automatically.  These ‘best guesses’ probably work well in the living room and on normal media web pages, but not in a medical office using a rich application where every second is money spent.

Ankhos is a web app and, as such, is very portable. This portability will be able to accommodate both users of the iPad and of the desktop. Those who wish to use the iPads may happily continue to do so. For others we will use our existing windows workstation ‘hubs’ for the forseeable future.

The past few weeks have been so busy and so fun. All of the people here at COS are extremely smart and very invested in improving their practice… and we get to improve our software along the way.

Ankhos + iPad: The perfect marriage

June 14, 2010

I just recieved our development iPad from the apple store this afternoon. If there has ever been an incarnation of poetry it is in the synergy of the iPad and Ankhos.  There is really something special in the iPad and I am now a believer.

I was skeptical that Safari would be able to handle what Ankhos was up to, or that the resolution might be to small or… well, that’s all in the past now. I hope iPad forgives me.

This is going to be awesome.

Ankhos launching on iPads, but not Mac

June 10, 2010

It’s decided. The initial rollout of Ankhos will be on the iPad.  They are cheap, light and easy to use. However, we won’t be using the broken-down OS that comes with them. The current plan (in development) is to use them simply as a thin client to the already existing virtualized Windows environment. This will allow the doc’s machines to not only multi-task, but to use the portion of the  Windows-based EMR we are still using now

Doc’s are constantly moving in and out of exam rooms and nurses are constantly moving between patients administering chemo treatments.  Having the option of carrying their EMR system with them will surely be appreciated. (Ankhos will, of course, still run on a desktop workstation with any operating system.) iPads are…


Welcome, iPad. Goodbye context menus.

February 1, 2010

In last week’s post,  I talked about context menus (menus that appear when the user right-clicks) and Aru brought up a good point about the lack of UI discovery with such menus. Right-clicking is especially complicated with tablet pcs such as the new iPad. Ok, not ‘complicated’, but definitely not as easy as with a mouse.

There is a lot of hubbub about iPad being used in medical offices, and accommodating those tablet users will be another essential aspect of Ankhos’ success.  Due to its web-based nature, Ankhos is already OS-independent, so working with the iPad will be a breeze.  We just have to get the interface right.

Goodbye unnecessary context right-click menus.