The journey begins – Installing our Smart House with a new security system.

The journey began after our first burglary after living in the same house for many decades.

We had to the local cable TV install a Qolsys security system that has worked out great. Very reliable and can be armed and disarmed from your cell phone or the security key pad inside the house.qolsys

The home security key pad is very intuitive and easy to use (See above photo).

We had window and door sensor installed and connected to the alarm along with a panic button in the master bedroom. All in all an easy installation with only one trip. There was about a $250 installation fee and a monthly monitoring fee added to our cable TV bill.

In addition, we have to pay a small annual alarm fee to our local city that can be paid online.

A nice surprise, our installer showed me how set up install text messages to my phone every time the alarm was enabled or disabled. Nice feature since I get my text messages sent to my Pebble connected watch. Pending alarms are also sent to my phone and watch – which so far were just false alarms.

Overall, a good experience so far with no further break-ins.

Click here for a good review of the Qolsys Security Panel:


Quick link: A guide to how to use your new Amazon Echo

Nice introduction to the Amazon Echo at

How to master…the Amazon Echo
All of the right things to say to your new chatty speaker…
Talking to gadgets feels a bit unnatural when you’ve spent years conversing in the universal language of touchscreen.

So acquainting yourself with an Amazon Echo can feel like a riddle, wrapped up in an enigma, roll up inside…a tech-packed tube.

But Amazon’s pioneering, voice-assistant-packing speaker can really help you do a lot around the home, whether it’s playing media, taking lists, answering questions, or controlling your ever-growing assortment of connected devices.

And it’s not always obvious how deep the well of features go. So we’ve got two guides to help: if you’ve just opened a boxfresh Echo and want a quick crash course, head to our Amazon Echo starter guide.

Click to read more…