Digital Days in Zurich

In Olten I was looking for my teammate Kurt in the second wagon in row of the crammed ICN. I almost thought we had missed each other somehow. But then I discovered him. He had already reserved a place for me. We spent the half hour to Zurich with a little bit small talk.

Our booth was at the same place as last year. As usual we first greeted our co-exhibitors from Helsana and Medgate as well as Swiss Medical Network, under whose name we finally appeared there. A group photo was taken and shared on social media.

Kurt and I each had an iPhone and iPad with us. We presented our apps and software solutions, which came from our company, to interested visitors. Some were in development, others in the pilot phase, and still others already integrated into clinical everyday life. While some booth visitors showed interest in our work, others were on the hunt for “give-aways”. How convenient that Swiss Medical Network had to hand out small cans with the logo and “Fisherman’s Friend” sweets.

Also celebrities were present. I didn’t see all of them, but I was able to photograph Federal Councillor Ueli Maurer and Einstein presenter Tobias Müller myself from a distance and secretly. 😉

The long standing around was laborious, above all if one was not used to it. The back protested. Walking around the stands, looking at other things, listening to the speakers for a moment… just stretching the legs – yes, that was good.

At 19.00 o’clock it was finally over. I hurried to the train – after all I wanted to be home in time. Stupidly enough that I ran onto the wrong track in a hurry and caught the wrong train. Well, the way home with the detour via Bern took a correspondingly long time.

Team Event Wolfisberg

Practice makes perfect.

Once again there was a “secret mission” organized by our “Event Team”…

The way led us this time from Solothurn with the Bipperlisi train to Oberbipp. We hiked uphill towards Wolfisberg, above us the cloudy sky. At the forest our wilderness guide Daniel Kamber was already waiting for us. After a short introduction he explained to us that Apaches were the best trackers of all time. They could read about 5000 information from traces of a living being. Fascinating!

After Daniel Kamber showed us the traces of last night’s game change, he led us to a huge badger’s burrow and told us some interesting facts about wildlife. On the way to the next station we passed some tracks of wild boar in the maize field.

The next stop led us to the house of the Kambers, where they run a wilderness day-care center for children in the garden and also offer various wilderness courses. There we spent the rest of the day. The children there are always outside, except on extremely cold winter days. They have plenty of space to play and unfold. A fire was already burning in a shelter next door. Coffee and snacks were served after the steep ascent. We are just not all sporting aces. 😉

Before we were divided into groups, Daniel Kamber explained how intuitive archery works. Shooting with bow and arrow is dangerous and so we were informed about the safety measures so that nobody gets hurt. As a curative teacher and survival trainer, Daniel knows exactly what he is talking about.

After we were divided into three groups, the first group started with shooting exercises. Hit the target or the fox or the owl? May the best and the most accurate win! At some point, the apple got its chance, as it did with Wilhelm Tell, and we had to hit this small target. Some few even succeeded! Was that just a coincidence? 😊

The second group learned how to make a rope out of grass. It wasn’t difficult, but with time I got cramps in my fingers. Typing on the keyboard is not the same as doing fine work with the hands.

The third group was allowed to start carving a wooden spoon. First the contours are drawn on a piece of wood, then the hollow is burned out with hot coal and sanded. The hard part came last: carving the spoon shape. Those who had a good sack knife with them could be happy. The rest struggled with blunt knives, saws, and axes. Very few were able to take home their finished product ready for use. Unfortunately, most of them were not finished. I also count myself among them.

Between the rotations of the posts we formed rolls from a finished dough and placed them on the grill. The served Chili con/sin carne was very tasty.

A demonstration of how to make a fire without a lighter or matches was very interesting. Although I don’t think I’ll ever need this knowledge, I’m glad I’ve seen it before.

The weather cleared up, it slowly got warmer.

After the officially finished part cookies were served. The fingers wounded by the eternally long wood carving reached for it almost hastily. While some had gotten to the taste of archery and were still shooting around, our “Event Team” prepared the aperitif. The small talk was replaced by a easy conversation.

In smaller groups for fast or slow walkers, we went down again from Wolfisberg to Oberbipp, where the Bipperlisi brought us back to Solothurn. The event pleased everyone.

I don’t know how everyone else had fared, but I could have fallen asleep on the sofa around 6 pm, because somehow I was quite exhausted. Since I didn’t want to smell like a smoked sausage, I enjoyed a warm shower and was happy not to have to search for water in the wilderness to treat myself to this luxury.

Many thanks to Kurt and Jonas for this special experience!

Curious? Information only in German under

Team event at the Lounge- Kino in Zurich

Meeting in the open-plan office: instructions followed as to where the journey was to take us. Further details remained secret. That’s how they always do it, Kurt and Jonas.

We changed the train at Zurich main station. After only 1 stop we left the train at the station Zürich Hardbrücke. A small walk between the tall buildings led us past pubs. What? Why not to the pub? Looks pretty dusky in there…. Where would we be taken?

In front of a lounge cinema we stopped and entered. Wow! Special and inviting, it was good. After pulling off the jackets we were allowed to order something arbitrary to drink. Time for a Cüpli (a little bit of Champagne), Aperol Spritz or beer. Small groups formed at bar tables. One chatted, nibbled chips, was immersed in coloured light that shone down on us from the blankets. Pure relaxation.

Then we were told we could take a seat. Various two-person sofas with many cushions, for sitting comfortably or even lying down, were now allowed to be confiscated. Immediately we let ourselves sink into the pillows. While music videos were faded in on the screen and we tried to guess the singer, small appetizers were served to us as a starter. It was delicious. “Food porn” could not be missing.

Sometime the light was switched off and the film started. We watched ” The Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir” in English with German and French subtitles. Equal conditions for all.

Then the film paused so that the main course could be served. Our vegetarians had to be patient, because there seemed to be misunderstandings when ordering in advance. Nonetheless, the error could be corrected. However: meatless snacks were exchanged with other dishes. We helped wherever we could. And if someone didn’t want to eat his bowl completely, there was still a hungry soul who was happy to help.

The light went out again, the film started again. The cozy sofas made us forget that at some point that evening we were forced to travel by train back  home. When the film was finished, there was time again for conversation and small talk. Some talked about cosmetics, others about snapchat.

The served dessert incl. coffee or espresso was excellent. But soon it was said that the connections from Zurich Hardbrücke to Zurich main station were problematic, we should go to the main station early so that there would be enough time to catch the right train for the way home.

At the station, some started running, others went on the track, the rest like lemmings behind. All this just to find out that the train had already left. Our group broke up into smaller groups, to kill the waiting time the station was roamed through. Finally everyone took his train.

The morning after that? Some came into the office, others took a day off. Maybe someone stayed overnight at Zurich main station to sleep it off? Fun aside. 😉

Thanks to Jonas and Kurt for this great event, even if you always make a secret of it!

Arab Health

End of January we were together with Healthinnova in the World Trade Center in Dubai at the largest medical and health exhibition in the Middle East called ArabHealth.

We met well-known players in national and regional projects in the Middle East, Asia and Africa to identify potential opportunities for Fluance to participate and initiate contacts.

We are convinced to have promoted Fluance, our eHealth Cockpit and competences to interesting new contacts at just the right place, at the Arab Health in Dubai.


On June 7, 2018 we visited the iHomeLab of the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts. How can energy consumption be reduced thanks to intelligent buildings? How can the elderly live in their own four walls for as long as possible? This is exactly what the iHomeLab team is researching.

Since I had informed myself in advance, I was curious to see what will be shown to us during the tour. How far is today’s technology and are there components that I can already incorporate into my everyday life to make my life easier? With these and other questions I started on my way to iHomeLab with the Fluance team.

When I arrived on site I realized that behind the silver slat protection was a relatively old house. I was surprised and thought that the slat protection was the actual facade of the building. My misunderstanding vanished quickly when Peter Kronenberg started the tour. As he explained to us, the lamellas serve to insulate the heat in the house or to shield the cold or heat from the outside.

Credits to Léonie Miserez

“James” is the name of the iHomeLab computer that opened the door to the lab. We entered a room with 2 large sofas, a kitchen and an entrance plant. When we took our seats on the sofas, a film was shown to us. In it, the three main aspects of the iHomeLab were introduced to us. Energy efficiency, comfort and safety – that’s what the iHomeLab team is working on.

After the film we were introduced to the individual aspects as well as everything that the team could already achieve. There is one feature that I liked very much and that I would immediately implement at home: As you walk through the apartment, the TV screen changes from room to room to another screen, no matter where you are. You wouldn’t miss a film clip as you move around the building.

Credits to Badreddine Benaidja

The iHomeLab has too many functions to respond to all of them. What made me think, however, was that all the activities of one person would be taken up. Be it by cameras, the house computer, the identification card that the occupant carries with him so that the house computer can determine his location. If I had to live in the iHomeLab, I would feel uncomfortable over time. Because I would know that with a hacked system everything about me would be revealed: how I live, what I do, when I do it, etc.

Conclusion: The iHomeLab team has developed many good and helpful tools that could make life much easier for older people. But living in a “supervised house” would be “too much of a good thing” for me. The central question is: How secure is an iHome?

Eric Escurriola, (former learner at Fluance)

An afternoon at BFH Biel/Bienne

– with picture gallery –

At Bern’s college of higher education in Biel/Bienne the research in medical technics is going to be in reach. The process of the production of medicine up to the delivery at hospital’s bedside is shown in an interesting way. The research rooms have been designed as real as possible for letting one’s mind wander.

The transport

From the labor over the storage and the route of transport up to the hospital – there are many possibilities to optimize this process. Thanks to the common bar code GS1 it’s possible to follow the way from a product to the goal. The technology behind could be improved in future.

An example

The name of our virtual patient is Madam Brönnimann and she has to go to the hospital. There she’ll get a little chip which one she needs to carry with her during her stay. Therewith she can be identified and also her data could be saved on the chip for example her medication or disease history. Once the infusion is delivered, it can be verified by the bar code.
If the product barcodes were available in a cloud, the infusion could be tracked back to the creation day and the route of transport.  In case of a warning notice, e.g. the infusion is wrong and mustn’t be used, there’s still enough time for interruption so Madam Brönnimann would get an other one. But it get’s even better.

Surgery with hands and feet

During a surgery the surgeon looks at the screen where the little small camera in patient’s body displays the recording. There are a lot experiments concerning steering the screen display during a surgery. A sensitive foot pedal could be used for the navigation. Also a infrared sensor on the table beside could interpret the hand gesture and play it out correctly on the screen.  The fantasy has no limitation.

Rather having patient’s data online 

Today the physicians work mostly with paper and sticky notes to record quickly the patient’s findings or to review it. The possibility of using an iPad for the daily work is already given. Due to several programs the work could be accelerated, e.g. when the system is able to recognize some aspects and to make suggestions itself. As a example we were explained how it works by typing the body temperature into a special app. This software knows which numbers were in the realms of possibility and proposes only the numbers which weren’t out of question.

Drug on prescription

In pharmacies a new plan will be introduced. At first view it should be possible to see which drugs the patient needs to take, in which dose rate and at what time. The question is how older people would deal with it. What if there are newer information but the patient mixes it up? What if this plan is untraceable?

There are many advantages of the cross-linking of medical institutions. The prescriptions are available at any time, they can be modified online and there would be no danger of confusion.

Technical help at home 

If someone cannot get along in the privacy of own home the research can work wonders. People with Alzheimer or such who are restricted in their movements can benefit enormously.

The smart wardrobe

The mirror-clad wardrobe in the bedroom has interesting features: a display welcomes Mme Brönnimann and shows her where which clothes have been placed. It has a led illumination over every shelf board. The display has only three buttons which can be pressed or turned, because old people are often overstrained with new technics and many keys. But how does that work exactly?
Every piece of clothing has an own RFID sewed in the label. The smart wardrobe recognizes the RFID, in which piece of clothes it is and where it is placed. Mme Brönnimann doesn’t has to search for it, but is able to pick it out in a single unerring hand movement.

Sensors under the floor

The security in everyday’s life of elder people is still a subject of research. There is a floor fitted with sensors. It is able to notice where somebody is staying and in which direction the people were moving. If someone slips, fells on the floor and stays there for a while the system could raise an alarm and call an emergency physician.

Conversation with the vacuum cleaner

Assuming that Mme Brönnimann is a lusty pensioner who practiceizes yoga – she might be lying on the floor for two minutes and does some breathing exercises. The system recognizes that she’s lying there unmovable. Before the alarming system calls the emergency, her condition could be verified very quickly. How? With a vacuum cleaner of course!
The vacuum cleaner drives itself to Mme Brönnimann. Thanks to its iPad and Skype installed, he’s able to call some contacts. The first one on the list will be called. Should this call fail, the vacuum cleaner would call the next number. The called person – this could be also a child of Mme Brönnimann – takes the video call and can see her and talk to her. In this way it’s possible to decide if help is needed or not.

Laundry basked updates Spitex

Also the laundry basket in the bathroom has some sensors which give feedback when it’s full. If someone isn’t any more capable to do the laundry, to drag it into the laundry, to bend down or to kneel, the smart laundry basket is the best solution. When it’s full, it gives a feedback itself to Spitex so that somebody should come and collect him.  After the laundry is done it will be brought back, dry and folded.

Kitchen and bathroom in the think tank

A smart kitchen or a smart bathroom still are in a think tank at the BFH Biel. The related rooms still were in shell. The students can wonder about special capability of equipments and furniture for a while. Once the plan is finished the students are free to install, screw, fettle and configure.

It’s worth to visit the BFH in Biel. The guidance is very interesting and opens the eyes for the possibility in technics within the healthcare. We’re curious about the future developments.