Welcome to the Jun 06, 2010 issue of

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I hope you will forgive the "overly technical" ;-) title of Today's Topic. With the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico now being the largest man-made disaster in U.S. history, it's time to turn our attention to the Second Postulate of Murphy's Law (also known as the Law of Unintended Consequences): "Although mankind may believe that they have everything under control, they are always messin' things up at the most unexpected and inconvenient time." Isn't technology wonderful? We invented gasoline engines so that we could travel faster and farther than on foot, donkeys, horseback, chariot or buggy.

So we began drilling for oil in Pennsylvania. But then we needed more petroleum products, so we explored in the shallow offshore areas. When that source began to run dry, we started drilling in one-mile-deep oceans. Of course, we took the precaution to install fail-safe blowout preventers... and then OOPS! - the "fail-safe" system failed to prevent a blowout. Result: it took six weeks of trial-and-error ad hoc efforts to at least partially cap the blown-out undersea wellhead, as all the while millions of gallons of crude oil continued spewing out like an undersea volcano.

Last Thursday, 53 oil-covered birds arrived at Louisiana's rescue center for oiled birds at Fort Jackson. Another 13 birds arrived Friday morning, more were due in the afternoon. We tend to focus on the visible and obvious, but the impact on fisheries will probably be much more severe: "the die-off could take months or years and unfold largely out of sight. The damage could be even greater beneath the water's surface, where oil and dispersants could devastate zooplankton and tiny invertebrates at the base of the food chain," stated Rich Ambrose, director of the environmental science and engineering at program at UCLA.

Little fish eat those zooplankton and tiny invertebrates, then bigger fish eat those little fish, then we humans catch and eat those bigger fish. What is there to keep those zooplankton and tiny invertebrates, along with all the spilled oil and dispersants, inside the area currently marked "No Fishing" by the U.S. government? Nothing. The world's oceans are all connected. And what effect will all that oil and dispersants soon to be in our food chain have on us and on our coming generations? We don't know yet: it's "the Law of Unintended Consequences."

Give a hungry man a fish, and you'll feed him for a day.
Teach a hungry man to fish, and he'll buy a funny hat.
Talk to a hungry man about fishing, and you're a consultant. - Scott Adams

So, how does this relate to computers? Read the article - Are cell phones killing off bees? The answer is "Yes." Now ask yourself: "Do I like to eat food?" The answer again is "Yes." And how does food grow? The flowers that turn into food must be pollinated by bees so that the fruit can form. And if there are no bees, there's less food to eat. Isn't technology wonderful?

Instructions in a cellphone manual state: "Pacemaker manufacturers recommend that a minimum separation of 15.3 centimeters (6 inches) be maintained between a wireless phone and a pacemaker in order to avoid potential interference with the pacemaker." Think about this: lots of people carry their cellphone or smartphone (a miniature computer) in their shirt pockets. These shirt pockets are typically sewn on the left side of the shirt, about 1.5 inches from your heart. The strength of radio waves decreases by the inverse square of the distance, which means an electromagnetic signal 1.5 inches from your heart is eight times stronger than the same signal 6 inches from your heart.

Now ask yourself: "How do pacemakers work?" They transmit electromagnetic signals to your heart, in order to regulate the electromagnetic signals that your heart's nerve center sends to your heart muscles. This means your heart beats according to electromagnetic signals. So what happens when you place about 1.5 inches from your heart a different device - a cellphone or smartphone - that sends and receives electromagnetic signals that don't match your heartbeat? We don't know yet: it's "the Law of Unintended Consequences."

My notebook computer manual states: "Turn off your WiFi, Bluetooth and all means of connecting to wireless networks if a person using a pacemaker or other electronic medical devices is in the area." The University of California study WHAT IS WI-FI AND IS IT SAFE? states: "Currently, it is believed by most scientists that Wi-Fi radiation exposure is safe for most people with the possible exception being small children exposed for long periods of time. Although no health effects in children have been identified, it is recommended that children not sit for hours daily with a Wi-Fi laptop...." Hmm... not only your heart, but your brain also operates by means of electromagnetic signals....

Some friends of ours installed a wireless router in their apartment, about 18 inches from their boys' bunk beds. The younger boy spent hours and hours in front of his notebook computer (which was right next to the router) "chatting" with his friends via Instant Messaging programs. When he slept, his pillow was about 12 inches from the router's wireless transmitter. After a few months he began having headaches and psychological problems. Again, is this "the Law of Unintended Consequences"?

Protect your irreplaceable information! Mozy just this month announced an improved service that provides dual backups: on their servers and on a backup drive on your computer or local network. The new version also encrypts your files 75% faster and transmits them to their server at a faster rate. Go to Offsite Backup Services (see link below) for more details.
Click on Online PC Support for worldwide PC service   &   Offsite Backup Services for securing your files!

The Startling Health Effects of WI FI & Wireless Appliances states: "The reality is we are living in what has now been called an 'EM smog'. Whilst many people do not consciously notice the effects of this, 'Electro-Hypersensitives' do. This EM smog fills the air around us, penetrating every cell and affecting the functioning of our mind and body. Cell phones and WIFI have a similar frequency to microwaves, and we all know what happens if you end up inside one of them. And I've heard that having a WIFI router in your home is the equivalent of having a cell phone tower in your living room!"

Most scientific studies, including those used by the ICNIRP, the international regulatory body that sets the limits for safe radiation, measure only the thermal effects of electromagnetic radiation. "However, research has indicated that radio frequency radiation can cause changes in cognitive function (yes, I can definitely vouch for that), molecular changes in the cells, chromosome damage, decrease in short-term memory and cancer induction."

The above article quotes Dr. David O. Carpenter, a public health physician trained at Harvard Medical School and Director of the Institute for Health and the Environment at the State University of New York at Albany: "There is definitive scientific evidence that exposure to magnetic fields from power lines greater than 4 milligauss (a level significantly less that what is expected to occur near this proposed power line) is associated with an elevated risk of childhood leukemia. Some scientific research indicates an elevated risk at levels of 2 milligauss. A home not near a power line will usually have a level of less than 1 milligauss. Scientific evidence also links magnetic field exposure to cancer in adults as well, particularly leukemia and brain cancer. There is strong evidence that lifetime exposure to magnetic fields above 2 milligauss is associated with an increased risk of neurodegenerative diseases in adults, including Alzheimer's disease and Lou Gehrig's disease."

Another article, How EMFs Affect Us & What You Can do To Reduce your Exposure, states: "There is also constant unending tension in the nervous system, that puts our bodies into a state of chronic stress. Most scientists agree that the mechanism whereby EMFs impact the body's nervous system is explained by the principle of cyclotronic resonance. (The word cyclotronic refers to spinning electrons. According to the principles of cyclotronic resonance, energy is actually transferred from the electrical wiring in our buildings into the nervous system of people within the building.)

"Cyclotronic resonance causes the adrenal system to generate cortisol, stress hormones, and also causes ions, also known as electrolytes, (electrical particles) to get kicked out of the cells. Specifically calcium, lithium, sodium, magnesium and potassium are kicked into the blood stream to either collect in joints or be inappropriately eliminated. These ions, or electrolytes govern cell metabolism, calmness, mood and memory and are involved in most of the body's chemical reactions. Eventually, our immune systems begin to collapse.

"Additionally, studies have found that EMF exposure more than doubles the release of mercury vapour from dental fillings, triggers the expression of disease causing genes, damages DNA and interferes with DNA repair. Studies have also shown that cancer cell division is 24 times greater when the cancer cells are exposed to EMFs.

"It seems that the pineal gland is the organ most impaired by EMF exposure. This organ produces hormones and neurotransmitter that tune and regulate the hypothalamus, central nervous system and immune system. EMF exposure suppresses the pineal gland activity leading to the reduction of 2 important chemical messengers: melatonin and serotonin. Both are involved in regulating numerous processes and functions, however, serotonin has enormous influence over many brain functions."

Melatonin Regulates/Influences:
sleep onset and quality of sleep; body weight; energy balance; antioxidant activity; sex hormone production; mood; immunity; bone health; and prostate, breast and uterine health.

Melatonin Deficiency is Associated with:
insomnia; sleep disorders; endometriosis; fibroids; fibrocystic breasts; menstrual disturbances; prostate cancer; PMS; immune disturbances; cancer; high cholesterol; blood pressure abnormalities; depression; bipolar disorder; Alzheimer's; autism; epilepsy; sudden infant death; diabetes; anxiety; heart arrhythmia; cataracts; and scoliosis.

Serotonin Regulates/Influences:
appetite control; sleep; memory; learning; mood; behaviour; cardiovascular functioning; muscle contraction; sense of well being; endocrine, renal, immune and gastrointestinal systems.

Serotonin Deficiency is Associated With:
insomnia; memory and learning disorders; mood disorders; eating disorders; depression; obesity; panic attacks; alcoholism; headaches; ADD; aggression; fibromyalgia; PMS; schizophrenia; fibromyalgia; schizophrenia: memory and learning disorders; and impairments in functions that are collectively known as executive function.

"Executive function is a collection of brain processes that are responsible for planning, cognitive flexibility, abstract thinking, learning rules, initiating appropriate action, inhibiting inappropriate action, and selecting relevant sensory information. It is involved in decision making, trouble-shooting, impulse control, reasoning, managing time and space, organizing and co-ordinating activities, setting goals, self reflection, self correcting; multi-tasking and mood. Executive functions develop during childhood through to young adulthood."

So what should we do about it? Let's just expand the amount of electromagnetic radiation in the world - see: Rethinking the wireless spectrum crisis. Is this really what we want?

Facebook finally fixed their failing security settings... or did they? The message - "Our new, simple privacy controls make it easier to share exactly how you want. Your privacy settings are still the same" - appears when you login, and a link takes you to their "new, simple privacy controls" ...but are they really simple and secure? Here are the new default settings:
for "My status, photos, and posts," "Bio and favorite quotations" and "Family and relationships" it's "Everyone;"
for "Photos and videos I'm tagged in," "Religious and political views" and "Birthday" it's "Friends of Friends;" and
for "Can comment on posts," "Email addresses and IM" and "Phone numbers and address" it's "Friends Only."

When you click on "Customize" it shows you several more options. I've set most of my options to "Friends Only." How about you?

Then there's a link to "Applications, Games and Websites" where you can customize 5 more settings. (I'm getting tired of this! You call this simple?) Be sure you uncheck "Birthday" under "Info accessible through your friends" because that means your friends can share your birthday with other people who are unknown to you, which can be used to generate your Social Security number. "Public Search" is enabled by default, so that your real-world friends (and others) can find on search engines like Google the information you allowed to be public on Facebook. You must decide if you want to turn it off!

The goal of our CN.Net-News is to share information that we think you'll find helpful as you wrestle with that little monster on your desk, your computer. And we aim to present this information from a Christian worldview. Thanks for your time!

Yours truly,

"Dr. Bob the CompuNerd"

RobertD HoskEN
See the "nerd" in my name? (It helps if you're a little dyslexic!)
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