Damn good news for cell phone operators: arsenic in water is going to impact positively on your business!  The sad fact is that groundwater in Bangladesh is contaminated with arsenic. And drinking this arsenic will cause you a lot of grief in the way of skin lesions, breathing problems, cancers and other nasty things.

However it is apparently possible to dig to a certain depth where the water is relatively free of arsenic. The problem is how do you find that level? Well, Columbia university boffins have developed a database of about 300,000 wells in 17 districts in Bangladesh. The idea is that villagers will use text messaging to find out how deep to dig and the odds that the water will be safe at that depth. And as the mobile phone is a widely used piece of technology…the researchers are hoping that villagers will use texting to find out information about different locations.

Texting is also going to be used in Indonesa to get info out on bird flu as quickly as possible. And I thought texting was only good for sending saucy notes to people..??  Not that I have ever done that sort of thing….. ;-)

Check it out HERE but you will need a nature subscription.