Laptops can "toast" skin, say researchers
By Nicole Kobie
Posted on 5 Oct 2010 at 08:43
Laptops can toast the skin, leading to a condition similar to that once found in glass-blowers and bakers.
While warm thighs will come as no surprise to anyone who's ever balanced a laptop on their legs to get some work done, Swiss researchers say longer term exposure to such heat can lead to "toasted skin syndrome."
Such a condition is normally harmless, leading to skin discoloration that normally fades over time but in rare cases was permanent, the researchers at the University Hospital Basel wrote in the journal Pediatrics.
They added that getting "toasted skin" required resting a computer on the lap for several hours a day over several months, so it isn't likely to affect anyone stuck balancing a laptop on the knees during a flight or at a meeting.
“Computer-induced lesions are typically found on only one leg because the optical drives of laptops are located on the left side,” the researchers said. “The computer placed on a lap may completely or partially occlude the ventilation-fan exhaust.”
The main case studied in the research involved a 12-year-old boy who used his computer in such a way for a few hours a day over several months.
Only ten cases have been published since the condition was first attributed to laptops in 2004. "The popularity of laptop computers will likely increase this diagnosis in the future," the study researchers warned.
Depends on the laptop
My old dell laptop used to run too hot to rest on my knee.
I feel this varies based on laptop. My MacBook just doesn't get that hot under normal use. Also because the fan vents to the screen hinge area it makes a huge difference.
Surely better thermal efficiency should make a big difference over the next couple of years?
By hjlupton on 5 Oct 2010
I'm still waiting...
..for a laptop that can produce a decent cheese toastie on the move!
By Hamster on 5 Oct 2010
- Is it worth upgrading a media centre to Windows 8?
- Flickr redesign: is it enough to tempt photographers back?
- Hands on with the new Google Maps
- Nokia Lumia 925 review: first look
- Why I won't subscribe to Creative Cloud
- GoPro camera strapped to a remote-control helicopter: the ultimate boy's toy
- Acer Iconia A1 review: first look
- Acer Aspire P3 review: first look
- Acer Aspire R7 review: first look
- How we produce the PC Pro podcast
- The ICO's shame-faced u-turn on cookies
- Start8 and ModernMix: making Windows 8 work on a desktop
- How to boost your mobile reception
- How to fix Facebook: Social Fixer
- Taking the stress out of WordPress updates
- Where to download free web fonts
- Turn your tablet into a Sky+ remote control
- How to measure the success of a new IT system
- Three years on: the state of the tablet market
- Windows 8: what works and what doesn't