Once in a while, we get to read of strange phenomena somewhere in the world. Sometimes it’s radio broadcasts being heard from dental implants, sometimes it’s the bizarre UFOs being spotted all over the place. The latest to make news is Joe Falciatano III, a 12-year-old boy from Pulaski, New York. Apparently, when he just touches the computers he comes in contact with, they come to a standstill.
The boy has become popular as “Magneto Man” and has found that every system he touches goes out of control. He was later suggested by his teacher to wear an anti- static belt at all times. His teachers are convinced that he has a static charge problem. According to Marie Yerdon, a teacher at Lura Sharp Elementary school in Pulaski, NY, whenever other students use the computers, they work perfectly fine. But as soon as Joe steps into the scene, weird things happen. In fact, this static problem nearly failed him in his fifth-grade social studies class last year because his PowerPoint presentation was affected.
While other students in the lab continued with their presentations, Joe and his teacher Yerdon spent time troubleshooting his PC. As Yerdon describes it, Joe would be in Microsoft Word, and suddenly be unable to change the font. If he highlights a particular text, he may not be able to un-highlight it. He even gets upper case text without using the shift key! Worse still, he would save something, but then not be able to recover it!
Finally, Yerdon put a grounding pad under the computer, which she connected to the anti- static wrist strap that Joe was wearing. The teacher said that the school has purchased the equipment to protect students with pacemakers from electronic surges. However, in Joe’s case, they had to protect the computer from him. Joe also faced similar problems with his Xbox at home. His parents have now replaced it with the wireless Xbox 360, which he enjoys as long as he is across the room away from the gaming console. Some magnetic personality, Joe!