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Famous Horror Movie Safety Tips: What They Could Have Done Differently

by Cassie October 21, 2015

Horror Movie Safety Tips

Turn off the lights. Queue the creepy music. Grab the popcorn. But if you hear a squeaky floorboard, whatever you do, DO NOT ask, “Who’s there?”

I am an unabashed horror fan. Old movies, B movies, ridiculous sequels, parodies – bring ’em on. I love a good scare. And so, to celebrate the horrors of October, I thought we could do a little something fun. And that’s to look at fatal horror movie errors that almost guarantee a character death. Oh, and how they could have been avoided, of course. Safety first!

Don’t: Run From Danger
Sprinting from danger can seem like a very good idea – fight or flight, right? and who wants to fight a serial killer? – but as seen in modern classics like The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (and many, many others of its ilk), it’s not that great of an idea. In fact, it’s a pretty good way to not be around much longer. That’s because when we’re panicked, running flat-out and not watching the terrain, falling is a given. Falling flat on our faces is likely.

They might have lived if… They had practiced their fire/emergency escape plan (chainsaw-wielding serial killers totally qualify as an emergency). Practice, practice, practice, and they’d have been able to evacuate with their eyes closed, no falling prey to crazed killers.

Do: Get a Good Night’s Sleep
There are few villains more nightmarish than Freddy Krueger, amiright? For more than 30 years, his disfigured face and sharp talons have haunted horror-lovers everywhere. In addition to unsettling dreams, do you know what he’s given us? The knowledge that being too tired is downright detrimental to our health.

They might have lived if… They’d gotten a solid night’s sleep. Everyone’s needs and rhythms are different, but experts agree that most of us need a solid 7-9 hours. Getting enough sleep not only fuels your day, but can help you stave off illness, be more productive, and enjoy better moods. Plus, if anyone ever comes to haunt your nightmares you’ll be able to stay awake… at least for a little while.

Don’t: Assume the Villain is Dead
This one’s so cliché, you can see it in your head: The last remaining characters, standing over the villain’s “corpse,” weeping in relief. Then, BAM! The killer pops up and slays a few more, bringing the survivor count down significantly. Moral of the story: Don’t let your guard down and don’t assume “the killer’s dead”.

The might have lived if… They’d called the police. Look, horror movies notwithstanding, it’s not a good idea to play the superhero. If you fear a break-in or other risk to your safety, call the police. Then, wait for their arrival. Do not face a burglar on your own.

Do: Perform Regular Car Maintenance
Never does a dead battery or flat tire result in so dire a situation than in a horror movie, where a bum car can get you killed. (Tune in to Night of the Living Dead, and you’ll know what I mean. See you in 96 minutes!)

They might have lived if… They’d taken their car to a mechanic. We all go in from time to time (or do it ourselves), whether it’s for an oil change, to rotate our tires, or for those pesky annual inspections. Ask your mechanic to do a full once-over, and you’ll have a better chance of avoiding the horrors of a car break-down.

The Weekly Roundup 10.16 Edition

by Cassie October 16, 2015

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How Teal Pumpkins May Mean a Safer Halloween

Halloween, while an exciting time for most kids, can be a difficult time of year for kids who suffer from food allergies. A new initiative called the Teal Pumpkin Project aims to alleviate the stress of Halloween for kids with allergies. The project, started by the Food Allergy Research and Education non-profit, encourages people to put a teal painted pumpkin outside their house if they have non-edible treats such as small toys or stickers for trick-or-treaters. Starting in 2014, the Teal Pumpkin Project has had homes in 50 states and 70 countries participating. This year, the initiative hopes to have 100,000 households taking part in the project. With over 15 million Americans affected by food allergies, the Teal Pumpkin Project will hopefully continue to grow and give kids with allergies the opportunity to fully participate in trick-or-treating.

For the full story on, click here

Safety Tips for When You’re Walking

Home safety is immensely important, and there are many steps you can take to ensure your security in your house or apartment. But when you leave the house, it becomes far more difficult to control the environment around you. Here are some tips to keep you safe when walking outside:

  • Whenever possible, walk in a group
  • Travel in areas that are well lit and have other people around
  • Avoid alleys, stairways and other isolated places
  • Refrain from wearing headphones so that you don’t block out your environment
  • Map out your route, and avoid shortcuts through parks or empty parking lots
  • If you ever think you are being followed, run to the nearest group or local business for help

Utilize these tips to be more cognizant of your environment when walking.

For the full story on, click here

How to Properly Decommission Your Apple Device

With the purchase of every new Apple device comes the relegation of your previous mobile phone. Whether you choose to sell, trade-in or simply discard your old phone, it is important to properly remove the data before you do so. To start, make sure that you back up all the data on the phone before you erase it. Next, sign out of your iCloud account on the phone and make sure to reset the phone’s settings. Finally, under “General” settings, hit “Reset” and then “Erase All Content and Settings.” This will ensure that all your phone’s information is effectively wiped from the device. Once the phone has been wiped, anyone who comes into contact with the device next will not have access to your photos, messages and mobile banking information.

For the full story on, click here

New Teslas Can Protect You from a Biohazard

It’s no secret that Tesla cars are some of the most cutting edge vehicles on the market. Their new Model X boasts “Falcon Wing” doors that lift up to make exiting the vehicle easy, even in tight spaces. Still, this is hardly the most impressive feature of the Model X. During the car’s rollout, CEO Elon Musk mentioned that the car has a “biohazard button.” Despite laughs from the crowd, Musk went on to explain that the car’s air filtration is so advanced that it actually can filter out germs and other pollutants from the air. While other top of the line brands offer strong filtration systems that eliminate pollutants, none make the claim that they can filter out a biohazard. As a technology leader in the automotive industry, it is hoped other companies will follow Tesla’s model for exceptional filtration systems.

For the full story, click here



Real Life Crime Fighter, Phoenix Jones, Fighting Crime in Seattle

by Cassie October 8, 2015

National Crime Prevention Month

Did you know that October is National Crime Prevention Month?

It’s an appropriate match, given the season – a month of frightful diversions, Halloween dress-up, and other spooky activities. And for the last 31 years, the National Crime Prevention Council (NCPC, aka Officer McGruff the Crime Dog) has designated this month to spread the word about crime prevention and awareness, including important issues like victimization, volunteerism, and ways we can all contribute to safer and more caring communities.

Obviously, this topic is near and dear to us; we’re all about helping keep our communities (and your families and homes) safe. So in the spirit of both Halloween dress-up and the crime-fighting season, we thought we’d throw a spotlight on a local superhero: Phoenix Jones.

Phoenix Jones: Seattle Crime-Fighting Superhero
Have you heard of Phoenix Jones aka Ben Fodor? He’s a local legend in Seattle, thanks to his real-life superhero actions – mask and all!

The story goes like this: A few years ago, Jones’s car was broken into. After the fact, Jones learned that several people had witnessed the vandalism, but no one had done anything. But the real kicker was that Jones’s young son had been cut on the broken windows surrounding the vehicle. The community’s inaction had unintentionally resulted in a child’s injury.

Fast-forward to a second incident, when Jones’s friend was assaulted near a crowd – a crowd that did nothing to help – and the Seattleite’s secret identity was born. The vigilante dons full superhero getup – a bulletproof vest, stab plating, pepper spray, handcuffs, first aid kit and, yes, a mask – to help fight crime.

His reported good deeds include chasing off car thieves, discouraging drunk driving, breaking up fights, and subduing suspects until police arrive for an arrest.

We Can’t All Be Superheroes: How You Can Help
The thing is, as much as we cheer for the good guy – for brave souls like Phoenix Jones – we can’t all be superheroes. And in fact, the police don’t want us to be. Strictly speaking, vigilantism isn’t something law enforcement would encourage, since street superheroes do not receive formal training in how to respond to life-threatening situations.

But that doesn’t mean that we can’t help. The NCPC offers up several things you can do to promote crime prevention in your community, among them:

• Download the Crime Prevention Month Kits, offered by NCPC which cover important topics like keeping kids out of gangs and protecting your assets.
• Request a police department photo op with McGruff the Crime Dog. Don’t forget to invite local schools to attend!
• Suggest your local paper publish a crime-prevention series throughout the month.
• Invite Officer McGruff to your local Halloween parade.

Be a local superhero: spread awareness about crime prevention in October!

The Weekly Roundup 10.9 Edition

by Cassie

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The Smartest Building in the World

While smart homes are a growing trend in the tech world, one of the biggest advancements may be a smart office building. The Edge, a new office building in Amsterdam built by Deloitte, uses an app on your phone to direct you to an open parking spot in the morning, pick out a desk that best suits your daily schedule, and even alters the light and temperature in your work space to match your preference. With the massive amount of energy created by the building’s solar panels, the Edge produces more energy than it uses and is, therefore, one of the greenest buildings in the world. The purpose of the Edge is to create a collaborative, adaptable and convenient workplace. Chief information officer for Deloitte, Erik Ubels, believes that the future of office buildings hinges on their ability to connect both internally and to other buildings.  The current cost to create a building like the Edge is extremely high, but with technology like solar panels eliminating the cost of energy, constructing smart office buildings may be a worthwhile investment for companies.

For the full story on, click here    

How to Prepare for Losing Your Phone

Many people who have owned a smart phone, may have also experienced the horror of losing one. Although it certainly is not an inevitability, the possibility of losing such an important device means that you should be prepared for the event. When you first buy a phone make sure to write down the serial number and Mobile Equipment Identifier, which can usually be found in the “about” section in the phone’s settings. To keep your mobile information safe, avoid putting sensitive information on your phone and always use a lock code. Another way to keep your information secure is to regularly back up your device to a computer or the cloud. Most new devices have a way of tracking your phone via GPS (Find My iPhone, Where’s My Android), so make sure to set up an account so that if you do lose the device you can determine its location. There’s no way to ensure you’ll never lose your phone, but you can reduce some of the stress of a missing mobile by planning for the situation.

For the full story on, click here    

Travel Safety Tips

Traveling abroad is an exciting and fun way to utilize vacation time, but it is important to take precautions to stay safe. Use these tips to ensure that your trip goes smoothly:

  • When traveling to another country find out about their customs and laws
  • Carry money and documents in a bag/purse that is easily concealable
  • Do not go out alone after dark
  • Avoid wearing a lot of jewelry so that you do not attract predators
  • Use a business card as a luggage tag instead of your home address
  • Never tell anyone that you are traveling alone

With these tips you can stay safe while making the most of your trip.

For the full story on, click here 

Your Credit Card Just Got Safer

By now, your new credit or debit card with the shiny chip in it may have arrived. This new chip will help to drastically improve your card’s resistance to identity theft. Unlike your card’s old magnetic strip which used the same 4-digit code for all transactions, this new security chip creates a unique security code for each transaction you make. This new security method greatly deters a thief from stealing your card information, because he or she is unable to steal the unique code for each transaction. One drawback to this new method of card security is that the payment process now takes about a millisecond longer because the chip has to communicate with your bank or card company for each transaction. Additionally, things such as online transactions don’t benefit from the added security of the chip. Still, this new technology, which has been used for a long time in Europe, is a good step to help prevent identity theft.

For the full story on, click here

The Weekly Roundup 10.2 Edition

by Cassie October 2, 2015

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How to Keep Your Mobile Device Safe

With the ever-increasing cost of iPhones, protecting these pricy devices is becoming more of a priority. There are a few key steps that you can take to help increase the life expectancy of your iPhone. To prevent your battery life from deteriorating, reduce the amount of time your phone is plugged into a charger every day. Also, try to close any apps that may be running in the background draining your battery. If you have ever experienced a “spiderwebbed” screen, you know that a screen protector is vital to protecting the iPhone’s fragile screen. Phone cases can also severely limit the damage your phone sustains if you drop it. Avoid placing your phone on hard surfaces when it is on vibrate, as the vibrating could cause the phone to fall off. Ultimately, it is important to be mindful of protecting your phone and refrain from putting it in situations where it could get damaged.

For the full story on, click here

Paralyzed Man Can “Feel” Again with Prosthetic Hand

A man who has been paralyzed for over a decade was able to not only control a prosthetic hand with his brain, but also experience sensations. The hand, designed by the Johns Hopkins Physics Laboratory, is manipulated by electrodes that are attached to a person’s sensory cortex. The sensory cortex is the part of the brain that can experience various external sensations such as pressure. Electrodes are also connected to the motor cortex, the part of the brain that controls movement. A person using the prosthetic can operate the hand with the same brain transmissions used to operate any of their other limbs. While this prosthetic technology has not been perfected yet, the program manager of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) said that he thought controlled prosthetics are “showing great promise.” With more research being devoted to developing prosthetics, the quality of life for amputees and victims of paralysis will hopefully continue to improve.

For the full story on, click here

Scientists Create an Ultra-Thin Invisibility Cloak

Any fans of the Harry Potter book or movie series are certainly familiar with the invisibility cloak. What most fans do not know, however, is that invisibility cloaks are not just reserved for  the fantastical universe created by author J.K. Rowling. Researchers at the University of California, Berkley, have developed an incredibly thin invisibility skin cloak, that is able to make small objects disappear. The cloak is comprised of “nanoantennas” that redirect light waves away from the object, essentially rendering it invisible. This is not the first invisibility cloak to be created, but it is far thinner than other cloaks and can be scaled to match the size of the object it is covering. The possibilities for applying this technology to things such as military equipment are endless. It will be interesting to see how various industries are able to adapt this technology as it becomes more accessible.

For the full story on, click here

Public Transit Safety Tips

For people that take public transit, especially women, it is important to be mindful of your surroundings to ensure that you remain safe while waiting for your bus or train and during your commute. Here are some tips to keep safe while traveling on public transit:

  • Have your ticket ready so that you do not have to take your wallet out of your pocket or purse
  • Make sure to wait in well lit areas, preferably near other people
  • When traveling on a bus or train alone at night, stay as close as possible to the driver
  • Remain awake while riding buses, trains and taxis
  • Take an aisle seat to ensure that you cannot be blocked in
  • Keep your belongings on you, instead of on the seat next to you
  • Pay attention to who gets off at your stop

Utilize these safety tips to be prepared for your public transit ride.

For the full story on, click here

Lazy Home Security Is More Than Just Owning A Dog, It’s Having A Company Provide 24/7 Monitoring

by Cassie September 30, 2015

Home Automation From My Alarm Center

Um, hi. We have a teeny, tiny confession to make.

We love being lazy. Like really, really love it. We love breakfast in bed and weekends with nary an item on the calendar. We love skipping our chores (once in awhile) in favor of reading a book or taking a stroll. We love ordering in for dinner – and eating it with our honey while watching our favorite show.

There is something very, very comforting about indulging in lazy behavior. About not worrying. About checking our adult responsibilities and the door and saying, “here, you do it!”

So when you think about lazy, no-worries, no-thought-needed security, trust us when we say it’s NOT having a dog. A dog needs to be walked. A dog needs shots and vet checks and deworming. A dog needs food and water. And a dog deserves toys and exercise, not to mention lots and lots of love and care. And the most important point: a dog is a member of the family, not a security system. Definitely not a lazy security system.

24/7 Monitored Security Allows You to be Lazy
You want to know what does count as lazy home security? Hiring a monitoring company. (We feel qualified to say this because hey, we are a monitoring company. We know what’s involved.)

Put it this way: In life, laziness is always an exchange of some sort. Sometimes you exchange money for laziness, as in the aforementioned $-for-pizza exchange. Sometimes you swap what-should-be for what-you-want, like foregoing doing the laundry (you know you need clean clothes) in order to finish your book.

With 24/7 monitoring, you exchange a monthly sum for constant, all-day-everyday, forever-and-ever peace of mind. Let’s quantify that (if that’s how you like to justify you’re laziness, we’re all about enabling you!): in exchange for a monthly fee, you don’t have to buy dog food (easily $20+ per month), you don’t have to pay vet bills ($hundreds a year), and you won’t spend 30+ minutes a day – often, 30 scorching hot or frigidly cold minutes, by the way – walking your pup, giving him proper exercise. (Again with the numbers: 30 minutes a day x 30 days a month x $10/hour for a dog walker is way more than $35 a month.)

Dogs are a responsibility. (Lovable, fluffy, family member responsibilities.) 24/7 monitored security is total peace-of-mind laziness.

So What Does a Monitoring Company Do?
A monitored security system can “lazify” your life in many ways:

• Never again worry about your security. We monitor your alarm 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. If there’s a break-in, we’ll notify the police in an average 60 seconds.
• Never again worry about your family’s safety. Again, if there’s a break-in you’ll know police are on their way immediately. But we also offer flood, fire and carbon monoxide monitoring, and will send firefighters and EMTs your way, if necessary.
• With our personal emergency monitoring, we’ll assure 24/7 safety of the seniors in your life. We’re always on call to help.
• And what’s more, we make life easy with home automation. Turn off the lights from the comfort of your couch. Adjust the thermostat from the warmth of your bed. Lock the doors from the bathtub. Seriously easy, seriously lazy.

So go on, then. Get lazy.

The Weekly Roundup 9.25 Edition

by Cassie September 25, 2015

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How to Deal with a Burglar While You’re Home

With a burglary occurring every 15 seconds in the US, it’s important to plan for any situation. This includes the possibility that you could be in your house while it is being broken into. First, establish a safe place in your home that locks from the inside and has access to a phone. In the event of a burglary, you don’t want to waste time trying to find a good place to hide. You should also pick a safe word that alerts your family to the situation and prompts them to go to the safe room. Always try to avoid contact with the burglar- your safety is far more important than any possessions you have in your house. If you have a security system installed, and can get to it, sound the alarm. Burglars will often flee if they hear an alarm go off. With security systems and other new technology, there are plenty of other steps you can take to ensure the safety of yourself and your family.

For the full story on, click here 

New Cars May Have Auto-braking Standard

Auto-braking, an expensive add-on feature in many cars, could be an industry standard in the near future. Ten prominent automakers, including BMW and Ford, have announced that they will be making auto-braking part of all of their vehicles in the coming years. Technology has already drastically changed the auto industry with the introduction of self-driving vehicles by companies like Tesla and Google. Now, the laser powered sensors used in those vehicles will help to ensure that every driver on the road is safer in his or her own car. While older safety measures sought to prevent injury in the event of a crash, new safety measures aim to take human error out of the equation and eliminate crashes altogether. Given the current trajectory of safety technology, one day all drivers will own fully autonomous vehicles.

For the full story on, click here

Disaster Preparedness Tips

September is National Preparedness month. Use these tips to help prepare yourself and your family for potential disasters.

  • Apply a plastic film to glass mirrors and pictures to avoid shattering in the event of an earthquake
  • Use furniture straps to secure bookshelves to walls
  • Clear any items that could fall and block your main entrance
  • Lock cabinets to prevent them from flying open during an earthquake
  • Keep provisions to last at least a week if you live in more disaster-prone areas

It is extremely difficult to predict when a natural disaster will occur, which is why it’s important to take the necessary safety precautions.

For the full story on, click here

Upgrade to iOS 9 To Avoid Bluetooth Hack

All iPhone iOS releases are eagerly awaited by owners of the popular device, and iOS 9 is no exception. Most people, however, don’t update their phone to the latest iOS for security reasons. With news of a new Bluetooth hack, it’s more important than ever to update to the latest iOS. The Bluetooth hack uses Apple’s airdrop technology to drop malware onto any devices that are within Bluetooth range. Macs that have earlier versions of OSX Yosemite are also vulnerable to this hack. If you do not want to upgrade your OSX, you can turn off Airdrop on your Mac to prevent your computer from being hacked via Bluetooth. For iPhone users, though, you not only have to turn off Airdrop, but also the ability to access the Control Center from your lock screen. Your best bet is to update your devices to Apple’s newest operating systems instead of trying to work around them.

For the full story on, click here




The Weekly Roundup 9.18 Edition

by Cassie September 18, 2015

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Driverless Cars Duped by Laser Pointer

Driverless cars have been cause for concern for many people due to their reliance on cameras to ensure the safety of others around them. A new hack may give those who oppose the autonomous vehicles further ammunition to distrust the car’s technology. The hack, which only requires a cheap computer and a laser pointer, tricks the camera into believing there is an object in the road. While this may only result in the car stopping due to a perceived obstacle, in extreme cases, the car may completely change its route if it detects that it cannot get by. This hack certainly isn’t the most threatening vehicle hack around, but the ability to affect the camera sensors in driverless cars could present larger problems as the vehicles become more prevalent on our roadways.

For the full story on, click here.

Mac Computers Susceptible to Hack

Users of Mac computers have long felt impervious to viruses and other vulnerabilities that have plagued Windows computers. If we have learned anything in the past few years from cyber security breaches, however, it’s that every internet connected device has vulnerabilities, and Mac computers are no different. A new Mac hack let’s apps bypass passwords and gain root permissions which then allows them to install any malware they want onto the computer.  The hack also opens users up to being tricked by hacker-created ads, called malvertising, which aim to lure users into sharing personal and financial information. Apple has yet to fix this vulnerability despite criticism from members of the tech community. Cyber security continues to be an issue that spans a multitude of industries and could pose larger threats in the future.

For the full story on, click here.

Hummingbirds Use Hawks for Home Security

All home security comes at a cost. For people, it is usually a small monthly fee, but for hummingbirds, the cost is the constant threat of being eaten by hawks. A new study found that 80 percent of hummingbird nests in the Chiricahua Mountains in Arizona are built near hawk nests. This may sound like a poor strategy, but it is in fact a good way to increase the chance of humming bird survival. On a day to day basis, only 6% of hummingbird nests survive. Nests built near hawk nests, however, have a 52% chance of survival. This is primarily due to the fact that hawks scare away many of the squirrels and jays that normally prey on hummingbirds. Also, hawks generally refrain from eating hummingbirds and hummingbird eggs, because they prefer more substantial meals. Still, relying on your security system not to devour you, because you aren’t as filling as other options, hardly seems ideal.

For the full story on, click here. 

Driving Tips for Older Drivers

You often see driving tips geared towards young drivers who have just passed their license test. Rarely do you encounter tips that focus on ageing drivers. Below is a list of tips that can help you stay safe behind the wheel as you get older.

  • Stay physically active so that you are ready to react when you are driving
  • Schedule regular vision and hearing tests so that you can make sure your senses are sharp
  • Manage any chronic conditions that may have an affect on your ability to drive
  • Consider any limitations you may have and adjust accordingly
  • Drive under optimal conditions whenever possible
  • Know your route before you get in the car so you aren’t distracted by a map or directions
  • Update your driving skills with a refresher course

Use these tips to stay comfortable and in control while you are driving.

For the full story on, click here.

It Is Always Sunny in Philadelphia With The Best Hometown Security Company

by Cassie September 17, 2015

My Alarm Center of Philadelphia, PA

You know those credit-card commercials that break down the $cost of various elements, but the resulting experience is “priceless?” Home security should be just like that.

You can itemize the cost of door and window sensors, of motion detectors and cameras. You can quantify the cost of your monthly monitoring package. But peace of mind? When it comes to your family’s safety and the security of your home, that is truly priceless.

At My Alarm Center, it’s not just that we’re Philly born and bred. (Although we are.) It’s not just that we live in, work in, and love your neighborhood. (Although we do.) It’s not just that we’re your friends and neighbors. (Although we are.)

It’s that we’re the best. Measurably better, faster and more responsive than many big-name, national security companies. We’re your peace of mind, rolled into one hometown Philly security company.

The Greatest Employees
We really, truly believe that great service starts with people. Any company could invest in quality equipment and the latest tech (although they don’t, unfortunately), but not every security company can guarantee the hometown element. We’re Philadelphians through and through: we scream ourselves hoarse for the Eagles, know hoagies are better at Wawa’s, and we order our cheesesteaks “whiz wit.”

We care about you, our friends and neighbors. And that means we work hard to keep you safe: we upgrade our equipment, train our staff well, outfit you with the latest tech features, and maintain great relationships with local police and emergency responders. And we treat every alert as if it were our neighbor’s alarm. Because it is.

Superior Monitoring
Obviously, we care about the personal element. But hard facts are important, too, and we’re no slouch in that department, either.

Monitoring is only as good as the technology that connects point A (your home) to point B (My Alarm Center), so we use the best. Our monitoring team is equipped with the latest, fastest technologies so we receive immediate alert to any potential problem happening in your home. Which brings us to our final point:

Fast Response Times
In the alarm industry, you’ll hear a lot about response time. The problem is that not all companies are completely clear on what they mean by that, or on how they deliver. We are.

At My Alarm Center, we define response time as the seconds (yes, seconds) that elapse between an alert or signal (e.g. your alarm going off), receiving that alert at our monitoring center, and then processing/reacting to that event. In plain English, response time is how long it takes for us to, for example, alert the police that your home alarm has been triggered.

And at My Alarm Center, our response time averages 60 seconds or less. You read that right: on average, less than a minute will pass between the very first beep of your alarm and our response. 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 52 weeks a year. We’ve got your back, always.

The Weekly Roundup 9.10 Edition

by Cassie September 10, 2015

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3D Printing a Multi-Story Home

With their latest technology, a Chinese construction company is demonstrating what happens when 3D printing is no longer limited by scalability constraints. The company, called the Zhuoda Group, has begun to 3D print full-size, multi-story homes and assemble them in just 3 hours. The process involves printing modules for each section of the house in their factory and then using cranes to fit the pieces together at the construction site. This construction method can reduce the total build time for a home by months and will end up saving the home owner significant construction costs, without sacrificing durability. The Zhuoda group is still working on patenting their construction method, but they intend to eventually commercialize their process. 3D printed construction projects could make future home building more economical and customizable if implemented throughout the industry.

For the full story on, click here

Simple Home Safety Improvements

If you are looking to make your home safer, here are a few tips you can utilize to make your home more secure.

  • Add heavy duty locks to doors that lead to the outside
  • Lock up any valuable tools you have in your garage in a cabinet or a safe
  • Consider overhead storage in the garage to protect equipment from the elements
  • Inspect decks and patios annually to make sure railings are secure and boards are free of rot
  • Large closet safes are a good way to store documents, jewelry or hard drives in your bedroom or home office.
  • If you are putting a grill on your deck, make sure it is at least 5 feet from your house

These small changes will make you and your family safer at home.

For the full story on, click here

Windowless Airplane Enhances Passengers’ Views

The IXION Windowless Jet Concept, designed by Technicon Design, aims to give passengers the sensation that they are traveling in a completely open plane. The plane will have cameras on its exterior that project a 360-degree view of the outside onto the inside walls of the plane’s cabin. The displays, however, aren’t limited to the outside view of the plane. If it is a cloudy night with limited visibility, the displays can show a trip to the Grand Canyon or even the moon. Another strength of the plane’s unique design is that without windows, the plane will require less material to manufacture, which will make the plane cheaper and lighter. As adaptations to long distance transportation continue to be considered, the Windowless Jet is a feasible, economical option.

For the full story on, click here

New App Tells You Your Friends Got Home Safely

A new app called Companion, wants to use your GPS to keep you safe when travelling alone. The app, created by a group of University of Michigan students, is able to predict what time you will get home and notifies your friends if you do not make it. Users can also contact family or the local police department in the event of an emergency by just tapping their phones. Alerts are sent via text message, so your friends do not have to have the app in order to be notified in case of emergency. The University of Michigan’s Department of Public Safety & Security is already looking into working with the app’s developers to gain data for campus patrolling. Companion could definitely be useful on other college campuses, and serves as another great example of how technology can be utilized to improve personal safety.

For the full story on, click here


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