Of the 100 million American cellular phone subscribers, some use their wireless phone only in a crisis—to call a friend or 911. They put their rap sessions on hold until arriving home, where phoning a friend costs no cents per minute.
For other wireless phone owners, it could be the fear of brain cancer, not an unwieldy wireless bill, that keeps them from using their cell phones for leisure chats.
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Convinced that a nine-year cell phone habit led to his brain cancer, neurologist Chris Newman, M.D., has filed an $800 million lawsuit in Baltimore against his cell phone's maker and several other telecommunications companies. His suit comes five years after the dismissal, for lack of evidence, of a lawsuit filed in Florida by David Reynard, who alleged that a cell phone was responsible for his wife's fatal brain cancer.
In Newman's case, his lawyer has said, "it's really not a question at all" whether the cancer is cell phone-related. The evidence, she says: Newman's own doctors made the connection between his long-time cell phone use and his tumor, which is positioned in "the exact anatomical location where the radiation from the cell phone emitted into his skull."
Newman has been front and center in a renewed public focus over the last few months on whether the fear of brain cancer from wireless phones is well-founded or folly. For his part, epidemiologist Sam Milham, M.D., recently expressed a breakaway scientific viewpoint when he told the television audience of CNN's Larry King Live show that there is "plenty of reason for concern" about cell phones causing brain cancer.
Hold the phone. Is there really cause for concern? Do steps need to be taken, as Milham told Larry King, to avoid a brain cancer epidemic among the millions of cell phone users in this country and around the world?
No, current scientific evidence does not show any negative health effects from the low levels of electromagnetic energy emitted by mobile phones, says the Food and Drug Administration. But some recent studies suggest a possible link between mobile phones and cancer and warrant follow-up, the agency says, to determine with more certainty whether cell phones are safe.
"We don't see a risk looking at currently available data," says David Feigal, M.D., director of the FDA's Center for Devices and Radiological Health. "But we need more definite answers about the biological effects of cell phone radiation, and about the more complicated question of whether mobile phones might cause even a small increase in the risk of developing cancer."
Monday, July 14, 2008
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
Your newborn navigates the world using his five senses. Baby's sensory explorations are constant, whether he's mesmerized by Daddy's face (or his brightly patterned tie) or soothed by the sound of his favorite lullaby or the smell of Mommy's skin. Keep things interesting by exposing baby to lots of new sensations — tickle him with a feather or play your favorite CD. The possibilities are endless when there's a whole world to discover.
Newborns prefer the human face in general. They're especially drawn to the outline of the face or the hairline, which is easy to see because of the contrast. Newborns can distinguish light from dark but can't quite see color until about 4 months. Try getting baby's attention with high-contrast patterns (like a checkerboard or stripes) and black-and-white or boldly colored toys. At 4 months he'll begin to use his eyes to coordinate his hand movements, making reaching and grabbing easier.
Monday, July 7, 2008
DR. SHIKE: The best diet for health maintenance, and for the prevention of avoidable diseases, should include a wide variety of foods from the four food groups. Such a diet should conform to the best knowledge we have based on good science and not on clever marketing. A healthy diet should both induce weight loss in the obese, and help all individuals prevent nutrition-related diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and others.
In terms of actual food composition, an optimal daily diet would include an appropriate amount of calories. These caloric sources should include 20 percent fat, 20 percent protein, and 60 percent carbohydrates.
A healthy diet should routinely include at least nine servings daily of fruits and vegetables, and should contain both soluble and insoluble fiber.
Ques: That seems to be the diet many people try to follow.
DR. SHIKE: Yes, but only a few succeed in shedding excess weight. A critical and often overlooked part of designing a good diet is determining the daily calorie intake that each person requires. It is definitely not a "one size fits all" approach.
Ques: Would optimal calorie requirements be calculated by height and weight, or by some other measure?
DR. SHIKE: The number of calories required each day is determined principally by body size, by level of daily physical activity and body weight goals. Diets are developed by determining how many calories a person typically needs to have enough energy to complete routine tasks: living, working and playing.
People who have jobs requiring low or moderate physical activity, and who have an average-sized body, should consume somewhere in the neighborhood of 1,800 calories a day.
In terms of the 20-20-60 recommendation, someone striving for optimal daily calorie intake would consume 40 grams (360 calories) of fat, 90 grams (360 calories) of protein, and 270 grams (1,080 calories) of carbohydrates. That's an approximation, of course. But it would be enough to provide energy and maintain current weight in a person with low to moderate physical activity.
On the other hand, someone who performs strenuous physical activity on a daily basis would need more calories to maintain present weight.
Ques: What is the best way to accurately determine daily calorie requirements? Is this a do-it-yourself project?
DR. SHIKE: The first step is to consult a registered dietitian, who will evaluate your nutritional requirements based on height, weight and level of daily physical activity.
Typically, an interview will include a full nutritional and health history, height and weight and determination of Body Mass Index, or BMI. This is a number arrived at by using a formula that factors in height and weight. The number derived indicates whether the person is overweight or not. From this, calorie requirements are calculated, and a diet is designed with an appropriate mixture of fat, protein and carbohydrates.
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
Bluetooth range is limited to few meters and requires low power management.
It is a big step towards an era of smart rooms and appliances which think and care about themselves and you.
Each Bluetooth device is equipped with a microchip transceiver that transmits and receives in a previously unused frequency band of 2.45 GHz that is available globally (with some variation of bandwidth in different countries).
In addition to data, up to three voice channels are available.
Each device has a unique 48-bit address from the IEEE 802 standard.
Connections can be point-to-point or multipoint.
The maximum range is 10 meters.
Data can be exchanged at a rate of 1 megabit per second (up to 2 Mbps in the second generation of the technology).
A frequency hop scheme allows devices to communicate even in areas with a great deal of electromagnetic interference.
Built-in encryption and verification is provided.