Elizabeth Holmes/Theranos: where'd the money go?

What I would advise them to do is to take out an “ad” in a Newspaper of some minor country, in a different language than that country, and publish your invention. You now have the tools to invalidate any patent that someone might try to enforce against you as the invention is now public knowledge and can’t be enforced. That’s what we used to do, don’t know if it still works though I haven’t kept up with patent law for a while.

(Elizabeth and Sunny)
Are both a little out of their minds
Don’t give 'em a dime
They’ll blow through your dough
Just like they blew through mine
A-whoa a-a-o
Whoa-o a-a-o
Where did the money go?
Where did the money go?

  • Fountains of Wayne

Indeed. Think of digital photography: we already had 1-hour photo joints, so what’s the big deal? You get your prints a bit faster.

Instead, we use photography in new ways. (And almost never actually print photos!)

That’s the kind of change a real Theranos could bring.

Or an even closer example: blood glucose monitoring. You can do a finger stick in seconds, but real-time monitoring is the holy grail because it enables much closer control. Yet the same sort of “it’s not needed” argument could be made.

No. The damage need not be done. and Any scheme where you intend to pay the victims or intended victims back, is going to be said to be "the wrong way to do it ". OJ Simpson’s armed robbery wasn’t about who owned the objected. It was the wrong way to get them back even if he did own them. Its not important who had a right to them.

Suppose developed a lottery winning system, to win lots and lots of money, it was a sure thing,for sure. But it was very expensive. So you buy the lottery tickets with a dud cheque.
Now you win the lottery , but the lottery people find its a dud cheque and won’t pay out… in fact they go to the police/FBI whatever. Can you say "Well, just take the value of that cheque out of my winnings ? " No … you defrauded the lottery people … clearly you intended to. Replace dud cheque with hacked inputs into computers, or some other scheme where you can attempt to set it right after collecting.

Borrowing without approval of the victim is theft or defrauding.

Oh hell yes, rich people with chronic medical conditions would have one in their home, and test regularly. Like diabetics test themselves. And just like having accurate, timely results has improved the management of diabetes, it would be revolutionary for all sorts of conditions.

(I speak as someone with a thermometer, pulse oximeter, and blood pressure machine in the house.)

If the technology worked, and could be used to test for COVID, that would also be a game changer.

Right now, if you think you may have COVID, you schedule a test in a few days, and a few days after that, you get the results back. Seems almost useless, really.

Err, i just tested myself for covid, in my bathroom, in 15 minutes. And it IS a game changer, and there’s a huge market for the tests.

That’s the antigen test, not a PCR test*. Getting a PCR test here means going to the urgent care or county site, waiting in line for a bit and then waiting a few hours to two days for results.

*I am tested positive on a PCR test last week. I’m going to take a home antigen test as soon as I get my lazy ass out of bed.

Two things.

One, those are not as accurate as a PCR test. I bought a few of them before Thanksgiving, and used them then and at Christmas before visiting family, figuring they were good enough for that purpose.

And two, you can’t find them anymore. All the stores around here are sold out of them. I shoulda picked up more when I got the ones that I did, I only have one box (2 tests) left.

I’m not going to get into the details, because it’s a hijack of this thread about Theranos, but I think the fact that the rapid antigen tests are selling like hotcakes, and are hard to obtain, even though they are less sensitive than the PCR tests, suggests there’s a market for quick, cheap tests – which is what Theranos promised to deliver.

Notably, when the Kamala Harris was to appear on The View last month, it turned into a remote interview because two of the hosts (out of 5) tested positive on the rapid tests. They took the proper full PCR test after the show and neither was positive.

Yeah. And even if you don’t think there are excellent reasons for such a box to exist, it would still sell like hotcakes. There are millions of people that would pay thousands for a box that gave even a handful of blood test results. Rich people are always on the lookout for home medical devices, even ones with marginal benefit (see the various smartwatch health sensors). If the box worked, it’s not fraudulent, even if most of the customers don’t need one. (Note that I’m not claiming that the box would have no benefit to home users. Just that a benefit is not required for it to sell well.)

Yeah, I was watching the movie about the case with a bunch of friends, and we all agreed that if it worked, and we could afford it, we’d want it ourselves. I thought it would need to maintained with expensive and temperature sensitive ingredients, and would be better suited to a drug store. But that’s for form of “I can’t afford it”, not “I don’t want it”.

That’s absolutely perfect for a certain class of customer. Same principle as “how about instead of just an expensive exercise bike, we sell you an expensive exercise bike and you have to pay a monthly membership fee forever?”

Since nobody mentioned the name, it’s called The Inventor, streaming now on Hulu. It’s out of date now of course given the recent news.

That is a documentary that premiered three years ago. There were also plans for a dramatic film, starring Jennifer Lawrence and directed by Adam McKay as well as a series starring Amanda Seyfried.