Palo Alto's Architectural Review Board approved the application from AT&T Inc. to build a distributed antenna system to improve cell phone and wireless data service in Palo Alto. The system needs to go ahead as approved. There are parts of Old Palo Alto that are cell phone "Bermuda Triangles." The cell phone service is marginal or nonexistent in places. Forget about data service.
The objections to the system seem to have been the following:
1. It's radiation! The radio frequency field is well below any recognized recommendations or standards. Also, it's not ionizing radiation — the dangerous stuff.
2. It will lower the price of my house! Data show zero effect on real estate prices where distributed antenna systems are installed. Maybe the value of my house will go up if we can get decent cell phone and wireless data coverage in my neighborhood.
3. It's ugly! I don't know how to define aesthetics, but compared to the wires, cables, transformers, amplifiers, cable boxes, lights, etc. on our utility poles, I think it's not bad.
Silicon Valley and the high-tech world were born in Palo Alto.
Numerous observers — such as Tom Friedman in his article in the "New York Times" on Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2012 — have noted that four things are required for a community to succeed in the 21st century: a university, an educated work force, an entrepreneurial business climate and high-speed communications.
Three out of four aren't enough. It all began 100 years ago in Palo Alto. It would be sad to see it end here.
Upset over Fiesta Bowl
Having a difficult time getting over the upset stomach from the Fiesta Bowl. Our very successful first year coach Shaw has a cliche that he often uses:"You have to finish." Operative word here is "finish." — that is exactly what the person calling plays at the end of the OSU game did not do. We let almost a minute waste away with the safest offense in the red zone doing nothing to advance the ball, with three time-outs in our pocket. Gain 10 more yards and even Jordan's left hooks would be good. Special team did not finish, but foremost neither did the coaches. Too bad as we had just moved so close to a No. 2 ranking. Aloha from the 50th state.