Soulskill from the it's-all-so-personal dept.
gManZboy writes "Talk of individually tailored medical treatment isn't pie in the sky. This approach eventually will help us address risk factors even before a disease can invade our cells, and detect preclinical disease before it gets out of hand. What role will medical informatics play in this brave new world? Hint: Little data projects may be as important as big data projects such as gene sequencing. At a recent symposium on personalized medicine, Ezekiel J. Emanuel, MD, chairman of the Department of Medical Ethics and Health at the University of Pennsylvania, questioned whether it would make more sense to target all the lifestyle mistakes that patients make rather than analyze genetic defects. His view: 'Personalized medicine misses the most important fact about modern society--little ill health and premature death is genetic, much more is lifestyle and social.' Is Emanuel a dinosaur or a pragmatist?"
To the systems programmer, users and applications serve only to provide a