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The Tecno AO
September 30, 2000 2:46 PM   Subscribe

The Tecno AO electromagnetic bioprotectionoscillator is an almond shaped disk that is 1.2 inches long and attaches to the casing of your cell phone or pager. It emits a magnetic oscillation that may counter the potentially harmful effects of the radiation produced by cell phones.
(quoted from the FAQ)
posted by tamim (11 comments total)

 
All of these things are utter horseshit. As a former designer of cell phones, I know this:

Anything which prevents radiation from the phone from penetrating your body will also prevent radiation from the phone from reaching the cell, and thus will render the phone inoperative.

If the phone continues to work, then radiation is still penetrating your body. End of story.

But whenever there's some sort of mass hysteria about danger, someone will be willing to step in with some sort of snake oil to sell, whether it has any actual effect or not.

posted by Steven Den Beste at 3:02 PM on September 30, 2000


Sounds like something from a Jules Verne novel, "Quickly Johnson, the electromagnetic bioprotectionoscillator "...
posted by Markb at 4:23 PM on September 30, 2000


I dunno, sounds more like Tom Swift than Jules Verne...
posted by aramaic at 6:05 PM on September 30, 2000


Steven Den Beste: "But whenever there's some sort of mass hysteria about danger, someone will be willing to step in with some sort of snake oil to sell, whether it has any actual effect or not."

Agreed. Especially when the product (or problem) is so technical that the snake-oil vendorcan make it sound real, legit and sell it using fear.

Whose going to debunk it? If no one understands it and there's no overseeing authority monitoring the technology how would we ever know if it's horseshit?

This is very similar to the TEMPEST argument. A camp of well-known frauds in the SIGINT community say it's the interception of RF waves from computer screens and the like, thereby seeing everything you type while a group of well-known experts claim TEMPEST is the process of blocking said RF. The military, which is the only group that can legitimize either side, won't talk about it because of its secret classification. So we're screwed!
posted by bkdelong at 6:14 PM on September 30, 2000


Any sort of counter-radiation or whatever put out by this thing couldn't be very strong, anyway. So it's on the wrong side of the phone to start with, no?
posted by Su at 9:05 PM on September 30, 2000


More to the point, if it's actually generating waveforms at all, it says they're at much different frequencies.

There's no explanation of how low intensity 13.5 hertz radiation is supposed to have any nullification effect whatever on 1.9 gigahertz (which, by the way, is also non-radiaoactive and non-ionizing and, frankly, non-toxic according to the best studies available).

What it is is "new-age". See, the frequencies it's broadcasting are those of brain alpha-waves. That makes it all better.

It's snake-oil, alright.

As to who is going to debunk it, there IS an overriding authority monitoring it (the FCC and the FDA) and the FCC responded.

Unfortunately, it's written in gov-speak and isn't anything like as romantic as a TV show which claims we're all gonna die.

posted by Steven Den Beste at 11:07 PM on September 30, 2000


Oh, by the way: the optimal antenna for any frequency is half a wavelength. The wavelength of 13.5 hertz is 22,000 kilometers. The ideal antenna would be 11,000 kilometers. As the antenna gets shorter the efficiency of transmission drops (following a sinwave). At these sizes, it's nearly linear (sin theta = theta for small theta) and so a 3 cm antenna would have a transmission efficiency of .00003/11,000, a number so low as to be ignorable. You could pump a megawatt into that mother and get no detectable output.

posted by Steven Den Beste at 11:18 PM on September 30, 2000


I wonder if the electromagnetic bioprotectionoscillator would've been any help to this hijacker who was killed by a mobile phone.

BTW, is it me, or is it really kinda difficult to say bioprotectionoscillator in one breath than: Peter Piper picked a pack of pickled pepper?
posted by tamim at 12:15 AM on October 1, 2000


Quick Robin, the electromagnetic bioprotectionoscillator! dah dah dah dah dah dah dah dah dah dadh dah dah BatMan! *POW* *BIFF*
Quick Matt, lock down this thread....It's running away! AUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUGH!
posted by daddyray at 9:57 AM on October 1, 2000


I prefer wrapping my head in aluminum foil. It's cheaper and far more stylish.
posted by wiinga at 10:18 AM on October 1, 2000


Don't wrap your head in aluminum foil! Oh the perils that may arise from improper wearing! You can get the hat you need right here. Also good for protection from mind control.
posted by plinth at 4:43 AM on October 2, 2000


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