Sunday 15 July 2012

Debian Med Bits: Report from LSM Geneva by Andreas Tille

In this report from LSM 2012 in Geneva I will report about
  1. Medical imaging using Debian
  2. Debian Med packaging workshop
  3. Integration of VistA into Debian
  4. Other interesting talks

Medical imaging using Debian

There were about 10 attendees basically upstream developers of medical imaging software.  The talk got some attention and the message to include even more medical imaging software into Debian was well percived.  Thanks to Mathieu Malaterre there was some live demonstration which was way easier for him as a medical imaging expert than it would have been for me.

Debian Med packaging workshop

Due to my advertising in the talk yesterday three students (two of them from one medical imaging project, one from an other project) attended the workshop.  Thanks to Axel Beckert who helped me out surviving the challenge to walk on unexplored ground.

The idea of the workshop was to ask the attendees to name a package of their own and just package this.  Because two of the attendees were upstream developers of CreaTools we decided to go on for packaging this.  After circumeventing some pitfalls in the beginning it went rather smoothly and after about 2.5 hours we were able to commit some initial packaging to the Debian Med Git repository which comes quite close to a ready package (perhaps some split into a library and a development package needs to be done and for sure testing is needed).
Quoting Frederic Cervenansky, upstream of CreaTools
Thanks for your work. Your workshop was very interesting and didactic: a relevant discussion between Claire and me for the future of Creatools has emerged from the difficulties you  encountered to package creatools. I will try, before the end of the month, to fully package creatools. And for sure, I will contact the debian-med mailing list.

Integration of VistA into Debian

I had the good chance to directly address some issues of Claudio Zaugg the speaker in the talk Implementing open source Health Information Systems in Low- and Middle Income Countries – a practical review directly before mine.  It turned out that by using Debian packaged software might help simplifying the issues they had in supporting health care workers in Low- and Middle Income Countries.
My talk was partly repeating some basic ideas about Debian Med from the talk on Monday because the audience was completely different.  Than I tried to explain in detail how we tried hard to establish good contacts to upstream developers and why this is essential to finalise the goal to include hospital information systems straight into Debian any by doing so open the doors of hospitals for large scale Debian installations.
There is also video recording of this talk.

Other interesting talks

OpenEMR, a multi-language free open source electronic health record for international use

Just discussed the packaging of OpenEMR which is prepared for Debian Med as it can be seen on our tasks page.  The contact to the creator of some inofficial package will be established to finalise this task.

OpenFovea : when open-source and biophysical research get married

Just another target for Debian Med popped up in this talk to further enhance Debian Med in covering all issues of medical care on one hand and on the other hand helping upstream authors to distribute their code
more effectively.

Collaborative software development for nanoscale physics

The talk would have fit very nicely into the Debian Science workshop at ESRF (European Synchrotron Radiation Facility) in Grenoble because it was about ETRF (European Theoretical Radiation Facility).  At previous LSM events I had just talked with Yann and the work to include their software into Debian is on its way.

Free software and High Performance Computing

This talk was not directly connected to my Debian work but I simply enjoyed to see how "two people" had a really entertaining talk about Top 500 computers.  Vittoria, you made my last day at LSM.