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Hipro & Noah HA Fitting software/hardware - queries

Pete Ketchum himsa at EARTHLINK.NET
Fri Nov 8 10:48:27 EST 1996

I=92ve read with great interest the postings about my company=92s product=
, NOAH.  Thanks to all=20
parties for their comments.  I=92d like to respond and throw in a few com=
ments of my own.

>in our
>situation our Audiologists are handling up to 10 brands of hearing
>aids and trial fitting sessions involving 3 or 4 different brands
>modules generally result in a hung computer or the nasty little errors
>that some modules produce

The last two years has seen the initial release of NOAH and a whole bunch=
 of NOAH-compatible=20
software products.  As with most software products, most of these first r=
eleases had problems but=20
 have improved with age.  Users are the critical link in this cycle of im=
provement -- call your=20
suppliers and tell them about problems; be as specific as possible (what =
is the exact error=20
message? what seems to cause it to happen? when did it start occurring?);=
 don=92t resign yourself=20
to living with software problems, especially system crashes.

>there are bugs out there, which may cause the system to lock-up, but are
>the Noah software developer working on cleaning up these bugs?

Yes.  In addition to making changes and improvements to our own product, =
HIMSA will conduct=20
conformance testing of the NOAH-compatible products developed by our memb=
er companies.  This will=20
begin by the end of this year.  The purpose of the testing will be to ens=
ure that the product=20
conforms to HIMSA=92s specification for NOAH-compatibility.  It will, I b=
elieve, eliminate most=20
problems in the interaction between all the various NOAH-compatible produ=
cts.  We=92ll provide more=20
information about this testing, once it begins, on our Web site and in ou=
r newsletter.

>manufacturer was promoting their new programmable aid to be used with a
>PC-driven real ear machine (not a stand alone PC).  I got "stiff-armed"
>when I asked about fitting and adjusting another line of programmables
>which we dispense.  I got pretty frustrated and said "forget it".

One of the fundamental ideas behind NOAH is that any NOAH-compatible prod=
uct may interact with=20
any other NOAH-compatible product.  If Company A=92s REM system will only=
 interact with Company A=92s=20
fitting system, then it is not NOAH-compatible and will not pass HIMSA=92=
s conformance test.

>it should be possible (assuming all the software exists) for you
>to switch between the Real Ear system and the Programming system.  In
>fact, the way you want to multitask these programs, even Windows 3.x
>will work.

NOAH goes well beyond the multi-tasking capabilities of Windows 3.x and 9=
5.  NOAH provides a=20
framework for fitting systems and REM systems to pass data back and forth=
, and for fitting=20
systems to automatically intitiate REM tasks.  I think this sort of sophi=
sticated interaction=20
between systems from different suppliers will pave the way to very effici=
ent and effective=20
fitting protocols.  HIMSA member companies are now starting to release so=
ftware that takes=20
advantage of these framework capabilities.  If this idea appeals to you, =
tell your suppliers and=20
the releases will happen sooner.

>unless there are some improvements we will be going back to
>the bench top full of individual programming devices and our old

Just my opinion:  Computers can be very frustrating.  At HIMSA we use the=
m to run our business=20
too and they don't always cooperate.  However -- bugs, crashes, and all -=
- we could never operate=20
nearly as efficiently without them.  Some things we couldn=92t do at all =
without them.  Many NOAH=20
users have told me the same about their own computer systems.

Peter Ketchum, President
1450 Energy Park Drive, Suite 148
St. Paul, MN  55108
1-800-435-9246, ext 101
pketchum at himsa.com

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