New York City’s famous Times Square seems an unlikely place to find inspiration for Health IT folks. But it’s where we find a great example of a different kind of Open – building architecture.

A recent TEDxTimesSquare video features architect Guy Geier discussing some of the projects his firm designed on Times Square, including The New York Times Building. I recognized that Open building architecture has distinct parallels to an Open approach to Health IT software.

“Open architecture, like in software design, is approachable, understandable, and comprehendable (sic) by the people that are engaged with the building,” said Geier.

That’s exactly what UNITY and Allscripts Open Application Programming Interface (API) does for developers. It helps make our Electronic Health Record (EHR) systems become more approachable, understandable and comprehensible. They can more easily integrate and add value for our clients

Open spaces, Open views

Geier points out the many ways in which The New York Times Building design is Open. For example, the stairwells are transparent, which Geier said encourages communication and movement.

In parallel, Allscripts Open API has more than 300 calls or “stairs” available to developers. These calls are ways to communicate with EHR systems. That means getting information out, as well as putting information back in. Stairs aren’t as useful if you can only use them for one direction.

The floors of The New York Times Building are wide open, too. Geier made a point of talking about how editors and writers sit together, making it easier to collaborate than when they were closed off from one another.

This collaboration is what we strive for through initiatives like the Open App Challenge and the Allscripts Developer Program. We’re in the same room with innovative developers, exchanging ideas and nurturing theirs.

Another of Geier’s firm’s buildings is at Eleven Times Square. He explained that sweeping views of the city encouraged an open frame of mind, calling it “a new view of the world, beyond from the building itself.”

We believe that an Open business model helps Allscripts stay better connected to what’s going on outside the company. We recognize that “not all smart people work for you” as Bill Joy from Sun Microsystems once said.

It’s important to pay attention and participate in the most advanced, innovative work happening in the Health IT industry. Open is the only way to make that happen.

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About the author

Michael Loesel, director, strategic marketing, is responsible for managing and growing deep, productive relationships on behalf of Allscripts with industry analysts including The Advisory Board, Gartner, KLAS, IDC, and others. Michael also oversees market research functions, with the goal of delivering actionable insight to the organization. Michael’s team provides the market perspectives to senior management and the board in support of annual strategic planning. Prior to Allscripts, Michael worked at GE Healthcare and started its Analyst Relations function. Prior to joining GE Healthcare, Michael worked as a marketing strategy consultant helping clients such as SBC, Allstate, Whirlpool, and Grainger grow through marketing and innovation investments.

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