Communicative alarms

I already shared my animosity towards car alarms. Since these are not going away anytime soon, the question becomes, how can we improve them to reduce the pain they cause the general populace? Same thing for house burglar alarms, that have the tendency to trigger – rigthly or wrongly – when the owner is on vacation in Hawaii…

The key problem is that when one of these monstrosities starts wailing, there is no one to call. Some house alarms have a sign indicating a security company that is in charge; in these cases you can try their number. But a sensible general solution would be to require all alarms to bear a “here’s what you can do to get me to shut up” indication. A name and cellular number of the owner would be a good starting point; a second, backup contact number would be useful as well. This is a matter for legislators; serious fines on owners of alarms failing to share this information would be useful. Until then, people can do it on a volunteer basis…

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