My dentist fixes cars + Whose teeth are these anyway?

I saw my dentist – Dr. Terry Orr – this week. He’s a really good dentist who says things like “If you keep the tooth clean, you may not need any work done.” His motto is “Don’t intervene unless absolutely necessary.” He works at HealthPartners Como Specialty office at Hwy. 280 and Como. I met him when I had an implant last year.

We were looking at my x-rays. HealthParners Dental is completely digital now with x-rays so were looking at thse on a computer screen. One of the x-rays wasn’t a picture of my mouth. It was an implant but the wrong tooth. Dr. Orr said there is really no system to figure out who the x-ray belongs to. In the old days, with actual film, they were labeled and you did have a better chance to find the owner if one was misplaced. The computer also makes it easy to flip the x-ray around so sometimes you don’t quite know which end is up. Film x-rays had a dot for orientation.

I theorized that it should be easy to attach an ID number to my appt, that also attaches to me, and that would be embedded in the file when the x-ray was made. I’d really like to know more about the whole system and the software that powers it. Something tells me that it’s not a Web 2.0 application. Hmm. Maybe there is a business model lurking here.


Besides being a dentist, Dr. Orr works on cars. He’s currently working on some cylinder heads for Mini Coopers with his brother. I asked him about programming the computers in the cars. He said that there is a whole auto subgroup that programs auto computers. The problem is that many of them don’t really know how the mechanical part of the car works. So there are serious visualization problems when the geeks are working with the mechanics. (Dr. Orr and his brother hate computers so he can’t really help the geeks.)

Another business opportunity here. Maybe some social Web sites to try and bridge the gap between the two groups. There’s got to be some geeks who do understand the mechanical part or some mechanics who get computers. Bring them together for some serious chats. tags:


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