Of Men, Mice & Mobiles
It is small but central to our existence. In fact large ones may even create a conspicuous bulge in the pants which might, perhaps, embarrass many.
Yes, you’ve guessed it right, I am talking about mobile phones. And I am NOT going to talk about mice in this hub.
Only a few decades ago it would have been a part of an unrealistic Sci-fi. Each person in the world being connect to another person! Nah! None of the Sci-Fi writers could have gotten so unrealistic.
But mobile phones have slowly crept into our lives & our pockets , and have became an integral part of our existence. Today it is difficult to imagine a life without a mobile phone. Are we sure that there were no mobile phones during the First World War? Did Alexander the Great embark on the mission to conquer the world without a mobile phone in his hand? Did Magellan really navigate round the world without a mobile phone by his side? I wont be surprised if I am told otherwise!!.
In the World-after-the-mobile phones, words such as office-hours suddenly lost their relevance. Mobile phones invaded, cinemas, theatres, operation theaters, bedrooms & every other area you can think of. Men, women & children got leashed to each other to form a large "mass of networked mesh”!
And what a leveler it has proved to be! Mobile phones are used by almost anyone & everyone: Emigrant workers working in far off lands, business tycoon about to close a crucial deal, doctors attending a critical patient, Mafioso keeping a tab on his rival. Mobile phones used by the richest of rich people as well as those at the very bottom of the heap. Mobile phones have come as a boon especially for “stand-alone” entrepreneurs running small or very small businesses, on-call people, emergency staff etc. For many people their mobile phones act as their offices with all the crucial contact numbers, to-dos, action-items neatly stored in the miniscule chip residing in their mobile phones.
No wonder, the mobile phone manufacturers and Mobile telephony service providers can barely wipe the grin off their faces. In fact the mobile phones are no longer referred to as phones by many of them. They use the more generic term: Mobile devices. This is so because today’s mobile phones include cameras, calculators, flashlights, radios, music system , email devices etc. One can use mobile phones to purchase a movie ticket, browse the net , convert square feet into square meters, locate the nearest chemist, sign off a business deal, as a store for all the important phone numbers, as a flashlight, as a wakeup alarm, answer a friend’s email, to send a text message to one’s wife to purchase groceries and, of course, to make & receive calls. In fact mobiles may pose a stiff challenge to cars as the most coveted item for many men all across the world.
The top mobile manufactures , such as Nokia, Samsung LG, Motorola, Sony Ericsson etc. have collectively manufactured billions of such devices & are churning out millions more every year. Similarly, cellular mobile operators or service providers have a collective subscriber base of billions of people all across the world.
The fact that mobile number has become a unique identifier for many people, particularly in countries where no unique identifier exists for the citizen, has propelled many into accepting mobile phone numbers as the de facto unique identification number of people.
There have been fierce debates regarding the possible (or rather probable) health hazards of the mobile phones. While pro-Mobile phone lobby insists that nothing has been CONCLUSIVELY proven so far, the anti-Mobile phones lobby insists that the tell-tale signs are so evident. The World Health Organization (WHO) & other world bodies too have conceded that so far nothing conclusive has been observed which may warrant issuing guidelines from them. However, many people feel that undue exposure to mobile/electromagnetic radiation from mobile phones is linked to possible increase in stroke, autism , leukemia, memory loss, spatial awareness, brain tumor/ neoplasia, possible carcinogenic effect, hearing loss & even premature ageing.
In fact , certain bodies such as the Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association have come up with a means of measuring the radiation which is emitted y the mobile phones & absorbed by the body. This is called specific absorption rate, or SAR.
For US , the maximum SAR allowed is 1.6 watts per kg & for Europe it is 2 Watts per kg. These two form the de-facto values of SAR across different countries.
Some basic tips for Mobile phone management:
1) Get a good mobile phone with low SAR rating. For more details on SAR refer to any site on the Internet or teh manufacturers' guidelines.
2) Get a phone with good battery life.
3) If your mobile heats up beyond a certain limit, it’s , perhaps, time to dump it.
4) Avoid using phones in low signal zone
5) Avoid holding the phone in your palm, use finger-tips instead.
6) Keep your phone dry - Avoid moisture etc
7) Avoid encasing the mobile, laminating or sealing it. It may grow hot
8) Never receive or make calls while charging the mobile phone.
9) Never use a mobile phone for communication while driving or operating heavy machinery
Well, many of them obvious , but then just a reminder always helps.