Break-in and Security

Well unfortunately not everyone rings in the New Year the same, “civil” way.
Sometime in the early hours of New Year’s day, someone gained entry to our garage and helped themselves to a couple of my bikes (including my beloved fixie and my soon to be replaced winter commuter mountain bike) and of all things, also took probably 20-30$ worth of recycling include empty cans and beer bottles! Luckily there was no real damage and everything taken can be replaced. But I mean, Come ON!

Honestly, The worst part has been the feeling of violation we’ve been dealt on the first day of the new year. It can be a bit tough dealing with the fact that someone out there feels brazen enough and entitled enough to walk onto your property, into your garage and take whatever they feel comfortable helping themselves too.

In response and to prevent this as best we can from reoccurring we’ve decided to step things up.

The cause of this whole thing is unfortunately, likely my fault. I can to some extent blame my exhausted sleep deprived “new-dad-brain”. Basically, I forgot to lock the door to the garage after we came home from NYE celebrations, focusing instead on helping my wife into the house and carefully carrying a sleeping baby into the house (which, if I may add, I didn’t wake!) .

So after more than a week of calls and research looking into what’s out there for home security (which by the way is a ridiculously huge offering), we’ve decided to go with a pretty substantial upgrade to our home. In addition to the newly installed motion activated night-vision capable HD security cameras I’ve finally taken the leap and purchased a state-of-the-art-home automation system. Disappointingly there is no retinal scan option but it does come complete with auto locks, lighting and appliance controls, and serves as an adaptive brain for our upgraded security system, hopefully successfully telling the difference between our roaming dog and people we don’t want around.

What’s most impressive is the leap in the system’s user interface and capability from the previous security system we had installed (which admittedly didn’t cover the garage). The new touch screen based UI is absolutely staggering and has encrypted tie-backs to our smart phones as remotes. I’m actually pretty excited to see the morning report outs and actually having an idea of what happens around the house at night. I am however bracing for the fact that instead of seeing countless green-tinted video clips of ninjas sneaking around, it’ll likely be… well nothing… maybe squirrels? but probably nothing.

In the interest of keeping costs down, we have decided to forgo some options on the new system… and this is a real option… we’ve decided at this time to forgo the option of having a patrolling drone fly around our house/block periodically with a down-looking camera (also night vision capable) with a real time video feed. The drone apparently can dock in a weather resistant charge station and its flight around a preset waypoint defined patrol can be triggered by a predefined schedule, sounds detection, or proximity motion detection. Awesome right? ya, but worth $10,000? Not really for our mere inner city property… maybe when our son starts dating


But in the event that security upgrades still fall flat, I’ve decided to adjust my end game for my arduino robot programming hobby. Instead of building an autonomously roaming rover first, I’m building a sentry gun; details right here on instructables and hackaday.

If all the other upgrades fail, this baby will be the last line of defence. Just need to nail the friend vs. foe recognition. 😀

A right brain Project Engineer by day, developing iOS apps by night.