Sunday, January 20, 2008

Are Cell Phone Health Issues Really Settled?

The FDA recommends broader studies of the effects of RF energy and general cell use, especially on children.

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Researchers should study more children and pregnant women in trying to figure out if cell phones or other wireless devices could damage health, the U.S. National Research Council has advised.

A few studies have indicated a possible link between mobile telephone use and brain tumors, although far more show no connection. But because wireless devices have become almost ubiquitous, researchers wants to ensure their safety.

The Food and Drug Administration asked the National Research Council to recommend some future lines of study. The Council, which advises Congress and the federal government on scientific matters, held a meeting of experts including engineers and biologists and has now released the full report.

Most studies have looked only at short-term effects on healthy adults, the report said.

RF Exposure Concerns

More study needs to be done on multiple, long-term, low-intensity radiofrequency (RF) exposure, the report said.

"Measuring the amount of RF energy received by juveniles, children, pregnant women, and fetuses from wireless devices and RF base station antennas could help define exposure ranges for various populations," the council said in a statement.

"Although it is unknown whether children are more susceptible to RF exposure, they may be at increased risk because of their developing organ and tissue systems," it added.

"Additionally, Specific Absorption Rates for children are likely to be higher than for adults, because exposure wavelength is closer to the whole-body resonance frequency for shorter individuals."

The report also notes that children today will experience a longer period of RF field exposure from mobile phones than adults, because they will most likely start using them at an early age.

Researchers should also analyze the different types of antennas for the amount of RF energy they deliver to different parts of the body.

(Reporting by Maggie Fox, editing by Alan Elsner)

Copyright 2007 Reuters. Click for Restrictions.,141507-c,cellphones/article.html

Worshipping Online? Hymnal Goes Digital

In electronic form, the popular hymnal Mission Praise can be searched, downloaded, and shared.

LONDON (Reuters) - Churches across the world are able to sing the Lord's praises online after the launch of the first major digital hymn book last week.

Mission Praise -- which has sold more than two million copies as one of most popular hymn books in Britain and around the world -- is now available at

Visitors to the site will be able to search through more than 1800 songs and -- for an annual subscription of 40 pounds ($79) per book -- download words, sheet music, accompanying audio backing tracks.

They can also create playlists for their own orders of service which can be saved and shared with others online.

Mission Praise was first published in the early 1980s to coincide with a visit to Britain by the American evangelist Billy Graham in 1984. It was the first hymn book to combine traditional hymns with newer songs of praise.

Publishers HarperCollins said the digital book would be an answer for church leaders and congregations keen to use new technology during services.

"As churches increasingly use video projection to display hymns on large screens for their congregations, the site will provide an invaluable resource, enabling quick and simple access to material electronically." HarperCollins said.

(Reporting by Kate Kelland. Editing by Paul Casciato)

Copyright 2007 Reuters. Click for Restrictions.,141577-c,sites/article.html#

Philips heads for LCD TV dominance

With a range of stylish, cutting edge LCD TV's, the Dutch electronics giant Philips is set to become a fully paid up member of the leading pack of LCD TV manufacturers in 2008.

Overshadowed by the likes of Panasonic, Sony, Samsung and of late LG, Philips' focus on cutting edge technology and high style seems to be starting to pay dividends.

The highly acclaimed 'Ambilight' LCD lighting technology has now evolved into 'Aurea' which builds upon this innovative system. Ambilight works by emitting coloured ambient light along the sides of the panel which is reflected on to the wall behind the TV.

Aurea builds upon ambilight with a fully back-lit LED which glows through the purpose built frame surrounding the LCD panel. With light actually shinning through the frame, Philips describes the effect as "bringing light and color to life in an unparalleled, highly visual and immersive fashion, drawing the audience into the full emotional experience".

The latest incarnation of Philip's Picture Processing Engine should be Pixel Plus HD 4, but the Dutch manufacturer believes there has been enough technological development packed into this system to warrant a completely new name, 'Perfect Pixel Engine'

Perfect Pixel Engine, like previous picture processing technology from Philips, has been designed primarily to enhance picture sharpness with both High Definition (HD) and Standard Definition (SD) sources and improve natural detail and colour performance. A main element of this system, 'HD Natural Motion circuit' improves on 'Digital Natural Motion' by employing greater amounts of processing power to improve motion fluidity.

The PFL9632 series of LCD TV's from Philips is suddenly being talked about, and the 32in model in particular has a growing reputation as one of the best flat panels for the size.