The Guidant Communicator.
Last week I got a parcel via UPS, a mysterious box. It turned out to be
my new Guidant Communicator, which I didn't exactly know that I would be
The Guidant Communicator is a Wi-Fi system which reads data from my
Guidant pacemaker and uploads it via a telephone line to my doctors
according to some sort of intermittent schedule. It can read and upload
the data from my pacemaker from anywhere within 8 feet. It will do this
anytime you get within that distance, though to make sure you get a
reading at least once a day they tell you to hook it up near your bed.
I had some trouble setting it up. The Communicator is meant to be hooked
up to a regular land phone line jack. But my phone is through my internet
provider and goes through my modem. So you would know the provided phone
cable wasn't nearly long enough to reach from my modem on the top of my
computer all the way into the bedroom dresser. So I scrounged around a
drawer full of old cables and managed to find a nice long phone jack cable.
After that, it was simple. The device connected to the system that it
communicates with and automatically set up pretty much everything except
the Time Zone — and the introductory voice set- up takes you through that
very easy, too.
About five years ago I was watching something or other on PBS and they
showed devices like this which at that time were already being used in
Finland. I thought it was pretty cool. Little did I know then that I would
eventually be "wired-in" in a similar manner!
In the past few weeks then I've gotten the new laptop that my friend
Sean gave me and now the new Communicator. I guess whether I planned it
or not I am now on my way to information mobility. Gee, I think maybe
I'll look into that new iPhone, too.
Okay, maybe not.
UPDATE: Last night the Communicator started making this loud, high-
pitched chirping sound, like a 200 pound baby bird. I looked in the
manual and there wasn't one damn word about any kind of a noise or sound
warning or whatever. So this morning I called Guidant Patient Services.
The fast skinny is they have no idea what is causing it either and will
have to get with their engineers and get back to me. So for now it seems
I've got the giant baby bird as a guest in my house at least until early
next week. I hope he doesn't eat too much.