WHAT’S NEW Robert L. Park Sunday, 23 Oct 2011 Washington, DC
CELL PHONEYS: BRAIN CANCER LINK IS REJECTED – AGAIN.
Ten years ago, a brilliant Danish epidemiological study found no link between mobile phone use and brain cancer (JNCI 2001, 93: 203-7). A decadal reexamination by Denmark’s Institute of Cancer Epidemiology, released last week, again found no link. The object of the new study was to look for any evidence of latent cancer that had not yet shown up in 2001; none was found. In a 2001 JNCI editorial I pointed out that none would be expected, since microwave radiation is non-ionizing, Park, Robert L, JNCI 2001, 93: 166-167. Can we now put the damned cell-phone/cancer scare behind us?
CLIMATE: IT’S TRUE; THE WORLD REALLY IS GETTNG WARMER.
The most comprehensive scientific review of historical temperature records ever carried out seems to remove any lingering doubts. A group of scientists at the University of California, Berkeley find that the average global land temperature has risen by about 1C since the mid-1950s. That’s big. The group has submitted four papers describing their findings to Geophysical Research Letters. It is unusual to circulate papers prior to peer review, but Richard Muller, author of “Physics for Future Presidents,” who heads the project, may have been influenced by the apparent attempts of the energy industry to corrupt the scientific process, such as the hacking of private climate-files at the University of East Anglia http://bobpark.physics.umd.edu/WN09/wn121809.html .
STEVE JOBS: NEAR THE END, A LITTLE SCIENCE MIGHT HAVE HELPED.
Never a scholar, Steve Jobs didn’t understand, or didn’t believe, the first law of science: “Every observable effect has a physical cause.” Perhaps the most profound insight of all time, causality is a total rejection of the supernatural. According to his biographer, Walter Isaacson, whose book, “Steve Jobs,” will be out Monday, Jobs declined surgery when the cancer was detected and relied instead on acupuncture, herbs and other “alternative therapies.” Eventually he regretted his decision, but by then the cancer had spread. A week after the world mourned the death of Steve Jobs, the body of 70 year old Dennis Ritchie was found in his New Jersey home, where he lived alone. The developer of the Unix Operating System, Ritchie made Steve Jobs possible.
THE UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND.
Opinions are the author’s and not necessarily shared by the University of Maryland, but they should be.
They certainly are by Me.
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