The Arctic – filled with snow, calm and silence. A place where a seal is hungrily staring at fish and polar bear is impatiently watching it from behind. On the shore arctic terns are relaxing their feet keeping a vigilant eye on us. On a nearby hill snow dust is whirling with wind like a couple in love on a merry-go-round. Winter atmosphere wherever you look. But there is no place for snowman or even conifers to turn into a Christmas tree. Actually, cables would probably be broken by a polar fox or a lemming.
Harsh conditions make it more similar to the Wild West than utopian El Dorado. As a matter of fact, the correct direction is the far North – Norwegian Spitsbergen island of the Svalbard archipelago.
Theoretically, there‘s nothing there but, if you look closer, you could spot a tunnel that runs into a snow-covered mountain, it leads to one of the safest places on the planet that is protected from not only wild animals but also prying people and every possible danger. This is the Svalbard Global Seed Vault. The seeds are to withstand any global catastrophe like massive storms, nuclear explosion, earthquakes, extensive fires, huge floods or even the latest Justin Bieber‘s single hit.
There is no place like home!
This place is safe like home, but is your home this safe? – you may be asked by your concerned grandma or a passer-by wearing a black balaclava. If under nearby trees, instead of Christmas presents, there may be burglars waiting for you to finally leave the house to visit your family at the other end of the country, it is worth to secure your house before leaving.
When the cat's away the mice will play
Just as the seeds stored in the vault are precious for the future of mankind, our belongings and house itself are precious to us. How to transform it into an impregnable fortress?
If you happen to have Kevin in your house, you may try to leave him home alone, but in the heat of the run and fight he may damage it even more than the poor burglars, so that solution is not very practicable, although sounds like a good challenge. You may, however, draw inspiration from the little kid‘s ideas.
Maybe not nails on the stairs, hot door knobs or an iron trap to hit a burglar in his face, but setting lights so that they turn on and off automatically when you‘re not at home gives the impression that somebody is there, what may successfully scare off potential thieves.
House smarter than a burglar
Your house is able to take care of itself, if it‘s a bit smart. How to make it smart? With a help of a system that like doctor Frankenstein brings dead things to life. How does it work? It may turn the TV on at a set time, what gives impression that somebody‘s watching it. It may immediately inform you when a front door opens and even lock the uninvited guest inside until the police comes.
If somebody browses through your computer, the VideoGhost will record everything that was done on your machine, by storing records and sending them to your smartphone. Voice activated recorder will lend an ear when it hears any sound.
Remote surveillance – Your third eye
You are able to see what‘s going on inside your house wherever you are, for example at your grandparents‘ house preparing Christmas dishes. Discreet but observant eye of a camera hidden in an alarm clock constantly observes your bedroom or any other room – small but vigilant like a crouching tiger. Smoke detector with a cam not only remotely informs about possible fire but also displays in real time on your phone or computer screen what‘s at the moment going on in your house.
If you want to see what‘s happening on your premises or around your apartment, choose a trail camera, more reliable that a conscientious watchman, that activates after detecting a movement and starts recording everything in its range, regardless time of the day or light intensity. Then it sends you an alarm message or e-mail.
Although a camera hidden in a coffee mug doesn‘t have the function of live view, this gadget comes in handy when you leave a room for an hour or two. Then, though you‘re away, the mug (precisely its cover) captures everything that happened during your absence. You can catch a co-worker going through your stuff or your cousin carelessly eating Nutella straight from a jar with his fingers!
Ask your neighbours
There is also a more traditional way to keep your house safe – simply ask your neighbours. Provided that you have good relations and you‘re sure they can be trusted. It‘s not a technologically advanced solution, like ideas presented above, but quite effective, plus your plants will regularly be watered.
The technology itself can unfortunately makes us become a victim of burglars as we tend to post many private pieces of information concerning everyday life – starting from breakfast, weddings to child births and holidays. Sometimes, the impression is that the only thing missing is a note explaining where the key is hidden. Remember that opportunity makes a thief so think twice about what you share on social media.
These gadgets and pieces of advice will not save you from a nuclear or ecological disaster but they surely protect you from a personal catastrophe and bring you piece of mind so that you can spend the upcoming Christmas in a relax atmosphere with your loved ones, not worrying about what‘s going on in your house.