The Sony Playstation PS3 & Wireless Controllers

I recently bought a Sony PS3 for my son & I to use. I’m grateful to note that if you use wired USB controllers & a wired Ethernet connection it’s an Electrosmog free experience.

I ordered up a 2nd  DUALSHOCK WIRELESS controller (which I use wired) and was puzzled by the document that comes with it. It states that the use of WLAN is governed in Italy & Norway. Wow, I think, this IS progress!

I didn’t investigate the Italy story yet, but the Norway angle is fascinating. The instructions state that the PS3 game controller is not to be used within a 20km area around the centre of Ny-Alesund, Svalbard. What possible harm can a controller with a range of maybe 3 metres do 20km away ?

I briefly imagined that this must be some kind of forward thinking eco-town. But it isn’t, it’s a research station of some kind. You can read more about it via WikiPedia


Allergy to modern gadgets is ‘posing health risk to millions’

Taken from an article by Lisa Adams of the Scottish Daily Record about Electrosensitivity – published 08/09/2008 :

IT’S called an allergy to modern life and half of Scots in the next 10 years could be at risk from this crippling illness, according to scientific research.

Victims of the condition, which is triggered by electromagnetic waves from mobile phones, power lines, microwaves and computers, suffer headaches, crushing chest pains, nose bleeds and a loss of feeling in arms and legs.

Experts report that up to 1.5million people in the UK already have their lives blighted by electro-sensitivity, with symptoms that also include heart palpitations, tiredness, fainting, light sensitivity and skin problems.

Mike Bell, chairman of the Radiation Research Trust, said: “We are seeing a significant increase in enquiries from individuals suffering from these symptoms.

“We’re concerned that many people could be living with health-related electro-sensitivity symptoms without realising the cause.

“Doctors in the UK are not trained to recognise this condition. They could be misdiagnosing patients and treating them with drugs rather than investigating the cause.”

One victim has compared the condition with life as a human aerial – their body overreacting to electrical waves in the environment. Today, as a scientific conference opens in London, public health expert Dr Gerd Oberfeld will predict that if current trends continue, up to 50 per cent of people could suffer from electro sensitivity symptoms in the next 10 years.

The World Health Organisation is also backing research, stating that: “Electrical hypersensitivity is a real and sometimes disabling condition.”

Sufferers are particularly vulnerable to the £2.5billion police communication system Tetra – Terrestrial Trunked Radio – which has been introduced throughout the UK. In the past three years, more than 1000 masts have been erected in Scotland. They pulse at 17.6hertz – above the 16Hz frequency the Government’s Independent Expert Group on Mobile Phones warns might affect brain activity.

Experts say radio waves at this frequency can cause calcium to leak from the brain, causing damage to the nervous and immune systems. If the masts are less than 15 metres high, they don’t need planning permission.

Former Norwegian Prime Minister Harlem Brundtland suffers from electro-sensitivity.

She said: “I felt a local warmth around my ear. But the agony got worse. It turned to discomfort and headaches every time I used a mobile phone.

“Some people develop sensitivity to electricity and radiation from equipment such as mobile phones or PCs.

“If this can lead to adverse health effects such as cancer or other diseases, we do not know yet. But I think we should follow the precautionary principle.”


Bluetooth in Bath?

No, we’re not suggesting getting your mobile phone wet.

New Scientist magazine reported yesterday – researchers have put up several Bluetooth monitoring points around Bath town centre. As around 50% of people that own mobiles walk around with Bluetooth enabled, the researchers were able to track peoples movements and social interactions around the town centre. (For ‘Social Interaction’ read – blokes beaming porn to each other in the pub.)

Vassilis Kostakos from the University of Bath sited four Bluetooth transmitters in the city centre. If you live in Bath and were wondering why your battery has been going flatter quicker, now you know why.

Vassilis’s tracking stations have been beaming out Bluetooth Inquiry Requests to every phone with Bluetooth enabled, and each time a visible Bluetooth phone receives an Inquiry Request it transmits a packet back to the device querying it. This packet contains the phones unique Bluetooth OUI, which is burned into each cellphones firmware.

The OUI is in the form 00:11:22:33:55:FF and the first 3 pairs identify the manufacturer of the device. Also, they would be able to collect your phone name, which is the identifier you can edit yourself – a lot of people change this to their real name, or nickname.

Of course it’s also possible to track someone using the regular GSM phone signal, by using several masts to triangulate the signal – but this is only good to a few hundred metres in the most ideal conditions – and unlike Bluetooth tracking, it’s not easy for an amateur to setup.

Vassilis’s experiment proves that using a combination of GSM & Bluetooth, you could track an individual at close range. If you were privy to the phone companies inside information you could look up the IMEI number in their database to find the home address of any individual… hypothetically of course!

Bluetooth is normally a short range technology, 10 metres for most phones and 100m for Bluetooth on a PC. However, our own experiments with modified USB Bluetooth dongles & external antennas show that you can pickup the signals from Bluetooth devices comfortably at 700 metres with a directional dish antenna.

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