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March 15, 1965

What About the Future?

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Aerospace Medicine and Bioastronautics, Lovelace Foundation for Medical Education and Research, Albuquerque, NM.

JAMA. 1965;191(11):928-929. doi:10.1001/jama.1965.03080110052013

Most physicians tend to think of computers in medicine as having a "far out into the wide blue yonder" aspect. To some this is stimulating; however, many tend to resent things which are hard to understand and the normal reaction is one of conservatism. The purpose of this symposium has been to provide a basic understanding of computers, what they are and how they work. As understanding and experience improve, physicians can move from conservatism to active use of these splendid instruments in the practice of medicine.

Computers in Medicine  Computers are not monsters; they have no black magic; they do not "think." It should be apparent that a computer is in fact incredibly stupid, doing only what it has been directed to do. However, when properly directed or programmed, a computer can carry out, in seconds or less and without errors or getting tired, extremely difficult computational tasks which

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