Israelis Invent Table Lamp Powered Completely by Tomatoes!

In honor of Israel’s independence day I bring you the following:

We all know tomatoes pack a powerful acidic punch, but we never thought we’d see one lighting up a room! Cygalle Shapiro of Israel-based d-VISION has created an incredible LED lamp that is completely powered by real, edible tomatoes. Currently exhibited at the Milan Furniture Fair, the design collects energy from a chemical reaction between tomato acids, zinc, and copper. This design doesn’t only explore advances in lighting technology – its also an art piece that sends clear and powerful social-conscience messages about where and how we receive energy.

via Table Lamp Powered Completely by Tomatoes! | Inhabitat – Green Design Will Save the World.

The Freelance Medical Writing Scene in Israel

I have been asked several times to describe to people what the freelance medical writing scene in Israel is like. Here is my personal take on it:

In most of the world medical writing is associated mainly with the pharmaceutical industry. In Israel, with the huge exception of Teva (The largest generic drug company in the world) the pharmaceutical sector consists mostly of small  start-ups who do their manufacturing elsewhere. It can be said that most work in the medical writing field in general is concerned with regulatory issues in the medical device field. These include FDA and EU submissions, clinical protocols, technical files and various reports and letters.

In addition, because the scientific research scene in Israel is very vigorous and most researchers are not native English speakers, there is a certain amount of work ghost writing and editing scientific papers.

Of course because of the internet freelance medical writers can work anywhere in the world from their desk and I have worked for clients outside of Israel who I have never met face to face. Israeli companies, however, generally will not work in this manner with Israeli writers. Probably because of the relatively small distances involved (90% of the medical device and biotech companies in Israel are within 3 hours driving time of each other), Israeli companies will want to meet the writer before working with him.

How does one get into the medical writing field in Israel? As far as I know there are no courses in Medical Writing in Israel. There is at least one online course: http://www.gradschool.usp.edu/programs/biomedical_writing/. All the people that I know in the field in Israel have learned medical writing on the job by working for companies that do regulatory consulting.  Because of the fact that there is little or no formal training available and there is a big advantage if you have a degree in biology or engineering there aren’t that many freelance medical writers in Israel and it definitely pays better than most other types of freelance writing.