Sunday, September 15, 2013

Phonebloks, The Concept Phone

Netherlands-based designer Dave Hakkens has created Phonebloks, a concept phone made of modular blocks for each component – the screen, battery, antennae, processor, storage, et cetera – that can easily be replaced if an individual part breaks with the goal of minimizing electronic waste. In theory, the parts can also be customized to fit individual users’ needs.

I really hope Phonebloks will be a reality in the not too distant future. 

Dr Gary Giovino, professor at the State University of New York at Buffalo did research that found that there has been an increase in menthol cigarette smoking among young people and that this is making it more difficult to reduce the number of smokers. He estimated menthol and non-menthol cigarette use between 2004 and 2010 using annual data on nearly 390,000 people who took part in the National Surveys on Drug Use and Health.

The results showed that among cigarette smokers, menthol cigarette use is most common among 12 to 17-year-olds – 57 percent of smokers in this age group smoke menthol cigarettes compared to 30 per cent of older smokers. Giovino believes that this finding indicates that mentholated cigarettes are a “starter product” for kids in part because menthol makes it easier to inhale for beginners.

There is also an urban myth that menthol cigarettes are not as bad for you as traditional cigarettes. The fact is, menthol sweetens the poison, making it easier to smoke. Young people often think menthol cigarettes are safer, in part because they feel less harsh. 

This research provides an important view of the trends and patterns of menthol use in the US of A. The FDA should consider banning menthol cigarettes.

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