I put it in the lingo of radioactive decay because it is something that scientists naturally get. And while I didn’t have any formal data to justify that half-life estimate, it seemed about right.
But last week when I threw out the 30-minute half-life figure in a conversation, a physician asked: “Really? Is there data published on that?”
Because I didn’t know of any published data, and to see whether I was in the right ballpark, I decided to start a test on Friday.
First, to define the term Half-Life, I take it to mean the point at which half of the people who will ever see a given tweet will see it.
So in other words, if a tweet will eventually be seen by 200 people before heading into the abyss, the half-life would be the time it takes for the first 100 people to see it.
So this was the tweet I used for my quick-and-dirty estimate of half-life:
First post in our year-long #MayoClinicDNA series: https://t.co/asZaCeA8ho #MCSMN pic.twitter.com/l0Uy1QHjVu
— Lee Aase (@LeeAase) January 20, 2017
Going to analytics.twitter.com, I tracked the growth in impressions for this tweet in 5-minute intervals for the first hour. Here’s the graph:
Within the first hour the tweet had 410 impressions. As the slope of the line indicates, it was slowing down significantly. Here’s the graph of total impressions each day for the first two days:
In the first 24 hours the tweet had 593 impressions. On the second day it got only 55, bringing the total to 648. As of this writing, the total is up to 659, so it’s averaging a little over one impression per hour so far on Day 3.
This tweet is on a trajectory to reach perhaps 680 total impressions, which would make the half-way point 340. When did that happen?
At 25 minutes it was at 332, and at 30 minutes it had 350 impressions.
So, it looks like my 30-minute estimate might at least be in the right neighborhood.
This is just the analysis for one tweet, and not necessarily a typical one. Curves for those that get more retweets would have a longer climb before flattening out.
It was kind of a hassle to set my watch alarm to remind me to grab a screen shot every five minutes, though. But if anyone knows a way to automate capturing impressions data for the first hour from a larger sample of tweets, I’d be interested in collaborating with you. Leave a comment or drop me a note.
You can become a SMUG Research Fellow.]]>
I’m probably on at least a dozen of these calls each week, and typically the calendar invitation has an 800 number to call, along with a notation that after dialing that number the participants need to enter a 6-9 digit access code.
So the invitation often looks something like this:
Call: 866-555-1212 Access Code: 1783256#
Clicking to dial the phone number on my calendar app is simple enough, but then I find myself flipping back and forth between the phone and the calendar app to remember and enter the access code before time expires.
I’ve been unsuccessful in this more than once, delaying the start of meetings, which of course wastes the time of everyone on the call as we’re waiting to get started.
I’m pretty sure I’m not alone in this problem.
Here’s a tip I got from Greg Matthews in a meeting last week that can solve it. His invitation followed this format:
Mobile 1-click dial-in (USA): 8665551212,1783256#
The comma between the phone number and the access code is the key. With one click on a mobile phone, it enables all of the non-host participants to join the call without having to fumble for the access code.
Can we all adopt this convention, please?]]>
Let’s start with the short trips first: a pair of 40-yard strolls with my daughters Ruthie (Aug. 12) and Rebekah (Oct. 15) after which their names changed.
Each of their weddings doubled as a fantastic family reunion, and Lisa and I are so thankful that we now have four of our six children married, and that they’ve married well. We’re delighted to welcome Trevin Hoot and Andrew Gatzemeyer to our extended family.
This was the year for our married kids to spend Christmas proper with the in-laws; we hope to get the whole gang together next year.
So here’s the family update for 2016:
Our oldest daughter Rachel and her husband Kyle Borg will celebrate their 10th anniversary on Friday. Kyle is the pastor at Winchester Presbyterian Church in northeast Kansas, and it was great to have him officiate at Ruthie and Trevin’s wedding.
While the Borgs couldn’t join our early Christmas celebration on Dec. 17, we will get some extended time with the kids in mid-January. Rachel and Kyle are going on an anniversary cruise, and on the way to Minneapolis for the flight to Houston they’ll drop off Evelyn, Judah, Aletta, Mabel and Sylvia to stay for a week with us.
Our oldest son, Jacob, still lives with his wife Alexi and sons Graham and Isaac in New Berlin, just west of Milwaukee. Jacob is a physical therapist at Froedert Hospital, and he and Alexi are expecting our eighth grandchild in May. While we missed having the Borg grandchildren for Christmas, it meant that Graham and Isaac got more attention.
The matrimonial news involving my younger daughters had some broader ramifications as well. Rebekah and Ruthie had (with only brief exceptions) lived and worked together for nearly a quarter century, and both were employed as nurses at Bethesda Hospital in St. Paul.
After Ruthie’s wedding in August, she and Trevin moved to St. Louis, where she’s working at DePaul Hospital and he’s in his final year at Covenant Theological Seminary. And last Tuesday (see selfie at right) I got to have lunch with Rebekah in Rochester when she came to interview for a nursing job at Mayo Clinic.
On Thursday afternoon, we got the excited call from Bekah that she had been offered and had accepted the position, and that she’ll be starting in February. She and Andrew are hoping to move to Austin, so he’s applying for positions in Austin and Rochester, too. The good news is that with her work schedule (five 12-hour shifts every two weeks) they don’t need to be in a hurry to move; she can commute from St. Paul.
Our son Joe is in his last year at Minnesota State University in Mankato and is working at Buffalo Wild Wings as he heads into his final semester. Because he opted not to play basketball in his senior year, Joe was able to join Dr. Farris Timimi, our medical director for the Mayo Clinic Social Media Network, and me on our November trip to Australia and New Zealand. One of Joe’s roommates, Jake Weierke, scraped together the plane fare so he could join us. I had Delta SKYMILES to pay for most of Joe’s ticket.
None of us will forget the experience. We saw the fairy penguins come ashore at dusk at Phillip Island, and during our 2nd International Mayo Clinic Healthcare & Social Media Summit the “lads” had a few days to explore Melbourne. Then it was on to New Zealand, where Dr. David Grayson was our most gracious host, arranging for us to visit Hobbiton, where the Lord of the Rings movies were filmed. We got to walk throughout The Shire and step inside a hobbit hole, and wrapped it all up with a pint of cider at the Green Dragon Inn.
In October, I brought Lisa and our youngest son, John, on a trip to New York City. This was John’s time in New York, and while I was attending my meetings he and Lisa explored the city via tour bus. We got tickets to Wicked one night, and on our last day also got on the ferry to the Statue of Liberty.
John is a high school senior attending Riverland Community College full-time, so he will graduate high school with his Associate of Arts degree. He also was one of ten young people from southern Minnesota chosen to be teen columnists for the Rochester Post-Bulletin. He’s written about his adult anxiety (confessing that in his heart he’s “a very tall hobbit”) and his love of history.
Lisa continues to enjoy her retirement from homeschooling and the flexibility it gives her. In addition to the New York trip, she and I were able to fly to Nashville in July for a family friend’s wedding, and to Houston in November for a wedding reception for Ruthie and Trevin on his home turf. Lord willing, we’ll be visiting London April 28-May 8, and this will be Lisa’s first international flight. If you have activity or sightseeing recommendations, we welcome your help in planning our trip.
I wrote several posts in June about my trip to China, and reading through them again brings back heartwarming memories of our gracious hosts and the many dedicated physicians and other health care workers we met. I also was blessed to make my first trip to Africa, when I did a workshop in August for The Aga Khan University in Nairobi, Kenya.
I’m continuing to enjoy my work as Communications Director for the Social and Digital Innovation (SDI or “Star Wars”) team at Mayo Clinic, as well as our work with the Mayo Clinic Social Media Network to help our Mayo staff as well as colleagues elsewhere learn to use social media tools strategically in their work.
It was great this year to fill several vacancies to bring our full-time team back to full strength, and that we could get those members together in conjunction with our Communications Division retreat in August. I’m also grateful for the part-time supplemental staff members we’ve added, and the volunteer members of our MCSMN External Advisory Board who believe in and contribute to our mission.
At the end of the year, while I was in New Zealand, I was elected to the voting staff of Mayo Clinic. This is a group that is mostly physicians and scientists, but a limited number of administrative staff also are included. It doesn’t affect salary but it does include some extra perks, one of which is having my name in bold in the employee directory. And because of my alphabetical endowment, mine also happens to be the first bold name listed:
Our March 1 #ScopeScope, broadcasting a colonoscopy – my colonoscopy – on Periscope to raise awareness of the need for colorectal cancer screening, was an important educational project. Here’s that story:
It also led to my picture being on the NASDAQ Jumbotron in Times Square the next day, when our collaborators in the project, Fight Colorectal Cancer, rang the NASDAQ closing bell.
As I said in the TV interview, part of the #ScopeScope inspiration came from one of my high school classmates, who was diagnosed two years ago with stage IV colon cancer.
Lisa and I attended the visitation Monday night, and Jim’s funeral was yesterday.
If you haven’t been screened, please do it. Colorectal cancer is one of the most preventable cancers; detecting and removing precancerous polyps stops them from turning into cancer.
We also lost Lisa’s mom, Arlene Wacholz, in June. Arlene was first diagnosed with malignant melanoma, one of the most deadly and least-treatable cancers, in 1980. That skin cancer recurred twice, and she lived on to have Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma and macular degeneration before finally succumbing to complications of Parkinson’s Disease. We’re thankful Arlene was able to live more than 35 years beyond her original cancer diagnosis, and that she got to know her 13 grandchildren and even some great-grandchildren.
As the sands of 2016 run out, may we all be grateful for the year we’ve had and treasure and make the most of each day we have in the future.
Wishing you and yours many blessings in 2017!
See the Christmas tag for previous yearly updates in this series.]]>
After 5+ years, finally met @mindofandre IRL (w/@dennisjboyle at #HealthFurther16) pic.twitter.com/wJUoxdKtEW
— Lee Aase (@LeeAase) August 23, 2016
Here are the slides for my 25-minute keynote:
I had no idea where it would lead me.
So it’s fitting that I’m starting this post in the KLM Lounge at Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam, as I have a few minutes to grab a cup of coffee before my flight to Nairobi, Kenya.
When I started my blog on July 30, 2006 my main purpose was to experiment with blogging and learn how to do it, in case we would ever want to have Mayo Clinic blogs.
And while my more-than-full-time job was leading the Mayo Clinic media relations team, I found time for blogging at least in part because I thought it was amazing that I could publish to the world for free on wordpress.com.
In my early days of blogging one of my major applications was to take notes during conference presentations. By live-blogging and linking to the speakers’ blogs or other online profiles, I reported what I was learning to a broader audience, and also shared my perspectives. And I began making connections.
A major turning point was in late 2007, when I was asked to give a Facebook 101 presentation to the Association Forum of Chicagoland. Some in-depth questions led me to joke that they were asking for information that was more appropriate for a 200-level class. That’s what led me to rename my blog Social Media University, Global in January of 2008.
And of course I gave myself the lofty title of Chancellor.
My university name was a tongue-in-cheek riff on the geographic naming of many real universities in the U.S., such as UCLA, University of Alabama-Birmingham and University of Texas- Southwestern.
Because my university was online and available anywhere in the world, the natural designation for Social Media University was…Global.
Which made for a fun abbreviation. And when I developed and metaphorically nailed my 35 Theses to the wall of SMUG, it helped me to think through and make the arguments for why mid-career communications professionals need to develop capabilities with these new tools.
While I started seeing some traffic to SMUG from widespread locations, I never dreamed that it would lead to international travel and face-to-face connections.
But in 2009, Lucien Engelen invited me to speak at a conference he was organizing at Radboud University Nijmegen in the Netherlands. I had only left the U.S. once previously, for a work-related trip to Calgary.
Carolyn DerVartanian invited me to Sydney, Australia in 2011, and on some other trips I also got to visit Sweden, France (with a brief stop in London), Italy, and Mexico. More recently I’ve made a couple of trips to the United Arab Emirates and a return visit to Australia. My two-week tour of China in June was amazing, and now I’m excited for my first trip to Africa, where I’ll be leading a workshop Monday at The Aga Khan University Hospital in Nairobi.
As best I can figure, I think I’ve presented in 39 states and Canadian provinces, too.
Of course none of this would have happened if we hadn’t found good applications for social media at Mayo Clinic, and without the support of our leaders to have Mayo serve as a catalyst to help professional colleagues also venture into social media. Special thanks to Jim Hodge, Chris Gade, John LaForgia, Shirley Weis, Amy Davis, and our President and CEO, Dr. John Noseworthy, as well as Dr. Victor Montori and Dr. Farris Timimi, our former and current Medical Director for social media, and Dr. John Wald, our Medical Director for Public Affairs, for their backing and inspiration.
Here are five things I’ve learned in 10 years of blogging:
1. It all starts with taking the plunge. Gaining familiarity and comfort with blogging and social engagement personally made it much easier for me to confidently recommend Mayo’s involvement.
2. It’s not too late to start. When I began in 2006, I felt I was probably too late to the party. People like Robert Scoble, Jeff Jarvis, Shel Holtz, Shel Israel and Jeremiah Owyang had been blogging for a while, and I wished that I had recognized the opportunity sooner.
Handwringing about starting late would have been not just unproductive; it would have been counterproductive.
As the landscape has changed, you may want consider publishing on LinkedIn instead of having your own blog, to take advantage of LinkedIn’s distribution to professional connections.
But it’s never too late to start expressing yourself thoughtfully online.
3. Geography doesn’t matter much. Social tools let you overcome barriers of time and space to bring together people with common interests. Even if there isn’t a dense concentration of those interested individuals in any one location, on the global scale enabled by social, there’s likely a large existing or potential community of interest.
4. The argument on the importance of social media is over. As I review my Disputation on the Power and Efficacy of Social Media today, the only elements that seem a bit dated to me are the references to social media being “free.”
But that’s just a sign that social media are completely mainstream. Facebook suppresses organic reach for brands because it has so much friend content to show users, and because brands find Facebook advertising cost-effective in reaching their audiences.
When I published my 35 Theses, Facebook was still almost three years away from its $100 billion IPO. Since then its market capitalization has more than tripled.
And with most print and TV ads now including a hashtag or a Twitter handle, Thesis 12 is beyond dispute.
5. We have a great and generous online community in health care. The people I’ve come to know through this social media journey are delightful. Naming them all would completely blow my word count, so I’ll just highlight current and former members of our Mayo Clinic Social Media Network (#MCSMN) External Advisory Board, along with my team, a.k.a. the “Star Wars” team, and our #MCSMN Members and Platinum Fellows. It’s gratifying to have so many colleagues who want to learn together how we can best use social platforms for medical and health-related purposes.
As I publish this now, having finished it during my Amsterdam-Nairobi flight and arrived at the Nairobi Serena Hotel, I’m filled with renewed thankfulness for another safe landing, and for a decade of blessings from blogging.
Thanks for reading!
Here are my slides:
Julia Thebiay, who works with Mayo Clinic’s Todd and Karen Wanek Family Program for Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome (HLHS), is my co-presenter.
Here are our slides:
We look forward to a good session and hopefully a great discussion.]]>
On Thursday our stop was at Zhenjiang Riverside Hospital Group, and we stayed at the Crowne Plaza hotel which is right across the street from the Yangtze River. This was our last multiple-night hotel, as we drove to Zhenjiang after our dinner with the Nanking Drum Tower Hospital leaders.
The hospital in Zhenjiang gave us a warm welcome, as has been the case at all of the hospitals in China, but this was the first time we had our name in lights.
After a brief discussion with the hospital leaders we gathered for the customary group photo.
After our lecture we went to a different hotel for our formal dinner, where one of the chairs in our banquet room was quite interesting. Each of the arms was in the shape of a greyhound, with the dog on one side laying down while the other was sitting up.
While many of the dinners have used the rotating inner circle table to deliver the food, this time we had a plated dinner, with many different plates and bowls brought to us. The presentation of the food was elegant:
The let’s-see-if-we-can-gross-out-the-American offering for the day was snake soup. I’m sure my daughter Rebekah will be horrified, but I did eat it.
We also had shrimp from the Yangtze River:
The next morning Wen Feng and I got up early for a run on the banks of the Yangtze…
…but because of rain we had to cut it short and finish our workout on the treadmill in the hotel.
Another great day in China.
The original four-story outpatient facility, built in 1892, is still standing. That’s where we met with the hospital leaders for an interesting presentation about its history. The current president, Dr. Guangshu HAN, was born in this hospital and was inspired by his parents’ examples, who also were leaders in the hospital’s development. It was obvious he is moved by the selfless love of the missionaries who founded and served in the hospital.
After the presentation we toured the hospital’s historical suite, also within that building, which was renovated in 2006 and renamed Drum Tower Hospital Memorial Hall. It reminded us very much of a combination between the Plummer Building Historical Suite and Mayo Clinic Heritage Hall in the Mayo building in Rochester. Our tour guide spoke flawless English and did a great job of bringing the museum to life.
During my visit I’ve also gotten a refresher on Chinese history, some things I perhaps had learned in high school or college but which had not been as vivid as they are now. One was the Sino-Japanese War, or what the translators have called the Anti-Japanese War, and the Nanking Massacre (also called the Rape of Nanking).
During my museum visit I snapped photo from one of the Western physicians’ diaries, recounting the stories of what happened as he and several others stayed behind to treat the wounded while sending their families away to safety. I captured the photo so I would be able to read the diary later, and was surprised that in the Wikipedia article linked above, a portion of that diary page was quoted verbatim. Click the image to read, but be warned that it’s gruesome.
After the historical tour we visited the hospital and its beautiful facilities, but stopped along the way for a photo with the statue of Dr. Macklin. During our initial discussion with Dr. HAN he mentioned that their hospital had a piano in the central courtyard, and that volunteers regularly played music there for a pleasant diversion. That fit very well, of course, with my closing story about Mr. and Mrs. Marlow Cowan. So as we continued the tour he made sure we got to see and hear their piano.
Then we went exploring, visiting a Confucian temple, where I continued my practice of having my picture taken with replicas of famous Chinese people:
Finally, we had dinner at the Nanjing Opera House, where I experience a new kind of dinner theater:
Now we have three straight days of hospital tours and presentations. Should be an intense but enjoyable experience: long and interesting days.