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Plug me in Scotty....

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Perhaps this is no laughing matter but it does show the absurd length humans will go to without thinking of the consequences. Perhaps you had best read the article now:


Broadcasting electricity, what a wonderfully disastrous idea. Haven't these guys read about the cancer clusters which have developed in people living near or under high power transmission lines? Sure, your cell phone will run forever but you won't.

I recall a sci-fi story many years ago that predicted this type of energy transmission as dangerous to all life forms, don't remember the name of the story or who wrote it, but I believed it. Imagine all those free electrons floating around in the environment and passing through our bodies.

This kind of crap makes me shudder. Fortunately by the time they get this moving I will be a figment of the imagination.

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I'm not sure the cancer cluster under an HV line theory is proven.

But this is something different and doomed to failure! To make the system as described work, you need to set up an alternating magnetic field. I've got one, it charges my electric toothbrush! The range though is pitiful, unless the toothbrush is within a couple of millimetres (bit less than 1/10 of an inch) it doesn't get any charge.

In real life, the strongest magnetic field one will probably find is a MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging) machine in a hospital. Ok so they are shielded, but if you put one in the open it wouldn't reach that far, even with 1.5 Tesla that most are rated at. Sure it's thoroughly evil at the close range they operate at, but even without the shielding I doubt a compass would be bothered at 100 metres (bit more than 100 yards). And that is where the idea falls over, you'd need a stupid number of magnets and they'd be charging a suitable phone, and making anything metal a bit warm. So wildly inefficient.

If you've a spare hour or two, the comments on the article make interesting reading.

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  • 2 weeks later...

It's magnetic waves, not electrons.

It may play havoc with a pace maker, but shouldn't affect your body.

It will be VERY inefficient, though.

Oh there's a pleasant thought. We'll have limited zones of activity for those with pacemakers, kind of like a prison without walls. I wonder how much all the warning signs will cost? Magnetic waves or microwaves, I don't like the idea of being cooked where I stand.

Overall my thoughts are that sometimes we try to develop technology without imagining the consequences. That sounds like a good story plot.

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Overall my thoughts are that sometimes we try to develop technology without imagining the consequences. That sounds like a good story plot.

Reminds me of when IBM Selectric typewriters gave way to ones that recorded what you typed on magnetic tape, then a bit later, on odd little floppy discs. Perhaps the first "word processor" since you could achieve a primitive form of editing with them. The rumor that went around various newspaper's City Rooms was that these new-fangled machines would fry your nuts while you were sitting at your desk. This led to reporters spending more time away from their desks in the bar next door.

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I can see we'll need a new new addition to our bill of rights: freedom from being bombarded from varieties of forms of electrical energy. The stuff might be OK, or even beneficial for robots, but I can't see where it would do living organisms any good.

There have been a bunch of studies over the year as to whether certain kinds of RF energy, magnetic radiation, WiFi, BlueTooth, high tension power lines, and cell telephone transmitters harm the human body, but nothing's been definitive. An old pal of mine from the 1970s died of a brain tumor around 1992, and his wife insisted to mutual friends that it happened because the guy was addicted to his (then-primitive) cellphone, which had a long antenna that was about an inch from his head... and that was exactly where the brain tumor originated.

One wonders what something like a cellphone is doing for our crotches when we walk around all day with the phone in our pockets. Call me crazy, but I generally take it out and leave it on the desk right next to me, assuming I'm at work.

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