Concern over Google Glass
Regarding "Seeing S.F. Through New Eyes" by Catharine Hamm, July 20: As the director of the Center for Family and Community Health at the UC Berkeley School of Public Health, I want to make people aware of another potential "con" for Google Glass users: the potential health risks to those who wear this device.
In April, I did some preliminary research that is summarized at bit.ly/1k8smWc. Google Glass emits more wireless radiation than most cellphones. Moreover, Glass users may be wearing this device on their heads for more than 12 hours a day, increasing their health risks.
Although the radiation level complies with the 1996 federal standards, many health scientists believe that these standards are obsolete as they fail to protect wireless device users from the nonthermal effects of wireless radiation.
In the long term, these effects include increased brain cancer risk, and in the short term, other health problems including electrosensitivity, sperm damage and infertility, and reproductive health risks in children.
For more information about the health effects of wireless radiation and tips to reduce your exposure, see my Electromagnetic Radiation Safety website at www.saferemr.com.
Joel M. Moskowitz
Center for Family and Community Health
School of Public Health
Paying for cheap
Just finished reading On the Spot ["An Illuminating Lesson" by Catharine Hamm, July 20]. As a seasoned traveler, my lessons are: Only deal with a trusted travel agent and reputable company. The cheapest deal may not be worth it in the long run.
The friendliest city
We enjoyed the article on Bordeaux ["Wakened Beauty" by Carolyn Lyons, July 13]. It reminded us of our trip to the city in 1999, when we proclaimed it the friendliest city we'd ever visited.
We had enjoyed the sights for a couple of days before I remembered that I'd promised a friend that I'd bring her some fabric from France for tablecloths. When we spotted a fabric store we went in. I saw nothing suitable for tablecloths and asked a clerk where the fabric might be. She spoke no English and I spoke no French so it took quite some pantomime to get my point across, and even more for her to make me understand that this particular store carried only fabrics for dresses and suits. Other stores carried fabrics for home goods, while still others carried fabrics for casual clothing. Whew!
Then came the difficult part: finding out where the proper store was located. My husband and I stood through each set of directions (in French) with blank looks on our faces. No other patrons spoke English. After a couple of minutes the clerk took my hand and led me several blocks down the street and around the corner to the correct store, chatting all the way. Triumph!
As I said, we've never been in another city where the people were so friendly and helpful.