I’m all for the integration of advanced technology into household appliances — I love hood fans that turn on automatically when they detect heat from the range, double-ovens and pan detection features on induction burners. But when the ringing of a nearby cellphone can cause the oven to turn on without warning, I start thinking about lines and sand.

If the Maytag oven in question met the safety standards of the Underwriters Laboratory and the American National Standards Institute, is this just a case of a “rogue oven” — or is this an indication that the safety tests for potentially dangerous products in our homes are woefully inadequate?

This electromagnetic “crossing of the streams” also has me wondering what other appliances in the home we’ll see affected by proximity to cellphones. Microwaves? Dryers? And what does this say about the devices we’re holding two inches from our brains half the day?

All I know is that I won’t be leaving my cellphone on the kitchen counter anytime soon.

Credit: New York Times article