The Radiological Society of North America has been told that one of its key diagnostic tools, the high-tech CAT scanner, has been successfully used in the design of that elusive object, a premium Strad, the equivalent of which is worth $6 million and more.
Apparently, Minnesota radiologist Steven Sirr slipped his practice violin into the machine in between patients and was amazed to see the detail recorded. Over the next few years, he and a colleague repeated the experiment with hundreds of working fiddles until they finally dared to let the CAT loose on a borrowed Strad. With the data retrieved, they assisted a luthier in producing an exact, rich-sounding replica.
Here’s the triumphant report.
Just one cavil: how many patients were kept waiting – and how many refused scarce CAT scans altogether – while the consultants and physicians were playing at being medieval instrument makers?
And it’s not just happening in Minnesota. Here’s another recent report on the musical misuse of medical equipment. Ethics, anyone?