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THE AM BULLETIN BOARD => QSO => Topic started by: k4kyv on January 06, 2005, 07:33:21 PM

Title: AARP-approved spectrum pollution
Post by: k4kyv on January 06, 2005, 07:33:21 PM
From the Jan 2005 AARP Bulletin, p. 23:

Do-It-Yourself Independent Living

From easy-access kitchen drawers to lights that go on with the touch of a finger - AARP and the Home Depot have teamed up to help Americans get the products and designs that will help them remain in their own homes as they age.

AARP is encouraging manufacturers to apply for a new "AARP Seal of Approval" for home improvement products that help people stay independent.  Initially only Home Depot will sell the products, which may include such items as bath and electrical fixtures.

The Home Depot will open home modification resource centers on a trial basis in about 100 of its stores this year.  It also will sponsor workshops and offers  AARP members a 4 percent discount on online gift card purchases.

It appears that one of the "electrical fixtures" they are pushing is touch lamps, a notorious source of RFI generation.  The last thing we need as for someone to start a bandwagon rolling that touts touch lamps as an essential convenience for seniors.  This is not to question AARP's objective of making a safer,  more convenient and comfortable environment for older people, but the folks who are advocating the use of touch lamps can be counted on to  be totally ignorant of the problems these devices generate.

Since amateur radio is increasingly becoming a community consisting largely of AARP-age senior citizens who will have to live with the garbage these things produce, and the fact that many older citizens enjoy listening to AM broadcast radio while unable to afford cable and satellite radio,  it would be in AARP's interest to give its "seal of approval" only to electrical fixtures proved to be completely RFI-free.  Besides, mechanical switches can be designed to be as convenient to operate as electronic  "touch of a finger" devices.  Also noteworthy of caution: the design of touch lamps is inherently hazardous; it only takes one simple component falure to put the full 110-volt power line potential right on the touch plate.

Perhaps a friendly note of advice to AARP and Home Depot from every concerned ham, BCL and SWL , senior and non-senior alike, would be in order.
AMfone - Dedicated to Amplitude Modulation on the Amateur Radio Bands