21 Sep

The Need For Two Way Radios For Security

Two way radios are invaluable resource to any security team anywhere in the world. These radios ensure fast and efficient communication with one another in a secure and discrete manner. This helps in enhancing security as far as protecting people, their property, buildings and other valuable assets is concerned. Not only are two way radios important for security purposes but they are also useful for ensuring workplace safety is maintained especially in construction sites and other noisy workplaces. The following are the importance of two way radios for security:

Access Control To Different Areas 

Two way radios are very useful when monitoring the situation in various places within a building, a construction site or a highly sensitive area. It enables the security team to communicate seamlessly about the people entering or leaving the site or area. It gives you complete access control of who enters or leaves the building or site. You can easily inform a partner on who looks suspicious and what exactly is happening at the entrance or anywhere in the building.

High Profile Security 

Two way radios offer a high profile security and monitoring of what is happening at a particular place. For enhanced security, direct and prompt communication is vital. Two way radios are among the best communication gadgets that offer fast and immediate communication between security personnel. You do not have to wait for the call to be connected as is the norm with mobile phones and other communication gadgets; it is simply instant communication.

Covert Security

These radios offer covert security. You can easily monitor the movements of suspicious people in an area without them knowing that they are being watched. Due to instant communication offered by these gadgets, it is easy to monitor every step taken by a suspicious individual. Good security requires stealth or concealed monitoring of events in an area. This allows you to monitor the security concerns of an area without being noticed.

Asset Management 

Two way radios or walkie talkies are essential in asset management. They enable timely monitoring of equipment, cars and tracks, buildings and even when transporting the assets. Transporting high value assets require constant monitoring and communication between the owner and the people transporting the assets. Two way radios allow you to communicate and monitor the movement of the people transporting the assets.

Emergency Communications 

There are times when emergency situations in the workplace or building may prevent you from accessing help immediately. without putting your life in danger. On top of that, it facilitates evacuation of other people from the danger zone. You can communicate with the rest of the security team to ensure everyone is evacuated and is safe.

Security Guarding 

Security involves guarding people, building and property. Guarding people is not an easy process especially VIPs. It requires constant communication between the SIA security people. It requires you to communicate in the moment. This is only achieved by using two way radios because these gadgets allow instant communication between two or more people. In case of a problem you can easily request for backup immediately. The latest two way radios allow users to include or attach discrete acoustic earpieces and microphones for covert use. This is very important when guarding VIPs.

Enhances Store Security And Management 

If you own a store or a warehouse that requires constant monitoring, then you should consider getting your security team two way radios. Using these communication gadgets, you create your own store detectives as they will be able to monitor what comes in and leaves the store without other people knowing that they are being monitored.

Immediate Response 

When not sure of what to do in certain security situations, a second opinion regarding the situation is very important. If the situation does not permit you to leave your location to go and find another person, being able to get immediate response or backup by the help of a communication gadget can help you resolve the problem very fast.

In summary, whether it is a hospital, school, factory, security installation or building, home or workplace, security is very important. Security can only be enhanced and achieved through seamless communication between the security team. By the use of two way radios for security purposes, you will definitely enhance the security of your building, workers, store or any other place that requires constant monitoring and security.

15 Sep

New Tomb, New Queen Discovered in Egypt

The tomb of an ancient Egyptian queen previously unknown to history has been discovered this month.

Queen Khentakawess III (also referred to as Khentkaus III) lived in the fifth dynasty and is believed to have been the wife of Pharaoh Neferefre and the mother of Pharaoh Menkauhor Kaiu.

Until this discovery, this ancient queen was completely unknown to recorded history.

The tomb was found in Abu-Sir, South-West of Cairo, within the funeral complex of Pharaoh Neferefre. It is thought to be some 4,500 years old. Reliefs in the tomb referred to Khentakawess both as “wife of the king” and also as “mother of the king”, which suggests that she was the wife of Neferefre and the mother of his possible son, the Pharaoh Menkauhor Kaiu.

When archaeologists discovered that the name Khentakawess had been inscribed on the walls, they dubbed her Khentakawess III, as there are two prior queens to have used the name, including the mother of Neferefre.

The queen’s tomb held around 30 utensils fashioned from limestone and copper.

Phahaoh Neferefre’s reign is believed to have been a short one. Modern scholars contend that he only reigned for one, or maybe two years at best. This is corroborated by data from the Turin King List and the fact that his tomb was never properly completed, but was seemingly rushed to competition following his premature death (detailed analysis of the king’s remains suggests that he died in his early 20’s).

Today, Egyptologists know the tomb of Pharaoh Neferefre as ‘The Unfinished Pyramid’.

Pharaoh Neferefre was succeeded by his brother Nyuserre Ini, who is thought to have reigned for at least 24 years. Nyuserre Ini was himself succeeded by his nephew, Menkauhor Kaiu, apparently the son of Kentakawess III.

Pharaoh Menkauhor Kaiu ruled for 8-9 years and was eventually interred in a badly damaged tomb today known as ‘The Headless Pyramid’

Tracking the lineage of Egypt’s ancient kings and queens is a tricky task and the notion that Khentakawess III was the wife of Neferefre and the mother of Menkauhor Kaiu is disputed. However, at the time of writing this, the consensus seems to be that this is her likeliest place in history.

Egyptian antiquities Minister Mamdouh el-Damaty was hopeful that the discovery of this new tomb/monarch would help archaeologists and historians understand more about the Fifth Dynasty, which, along with the latter days of the Fourth Dynasty “witnessed the construction of the first pyramids”.

25 Jul

Review of the DP2400

The Motorola DP2400 is designed to make it easy for individuals to

stay connected to one another. It is ideal for construction sites and

manufacturing lines where employees need to be in constant

communication. It is one of the best digital radio solutions. This

portable radio provides best-in-class audio. It comes with a variety

of intelligent voice and audio announcement components that help to simplify communication in difficult work settings.

There are 16 channels on this portable radio. It is powerful and

versatile and integrates two-way radio operation and advanced digital

technology. This device can change the way people communicate at your

workplace and help you to improve safety and productivity. It is a

non-display model that comes with 3 programmable buttons. It is

available in both VHF and UHF frequencies.


There are several benefits that you can enjoy when you purchase this

portable radio for your workplace.

Audio Clarity

One of the main benefits of the Motorola DP2400 is its outstanding

audio clarity. This radio offers quality digital audio all over your

coverage region. It comes with unique features that are included to

assist your personnel to speak and hear clearly in spite of their


Automatic Volume Adjustment

The intelligent audio feature adjusts the radio’s volume

automatically. This helps to make up for any background noises that

can make it difficult for your personnel to hear and speak. With this

portable radio, you do not have to adjust the volume. You will be able

to hear a call even when there are loud noises around you. If you are

in a quiet environment, the radio volume will reduce automatically,

ensuring you do not disrupt the people around.

Analogue and Digital Modes

This radio allows you to switch between analogue and digital to suit

your specific situation. The Motorola DP2400 has a mixed mode repeater

that is designed to update automatic changes between digital and

analogue calls. With this portable radio, you only need a single

repeater to use these two modes.

Capacity Plus

This portable radio comes with an optional single-site digital

trunking that enhances the capacity of the MOTOTRBO system. You can

take advantage of this system for high volume data and voice

communication. It can be accommodate more than a thousand people on

one site. You will not need additional frequencies to accommodate

several users.

IP Site Connect

This portable radio relies on an IP network to extend data and voice

capacities. The IP network can be used to connect about 15 sites to

allow communication among personnel that are in different geographic

locations. This network also comes in handy when a company wants to

increase area coverage in one site if there are physical barriers.

Linked Capacity Plus

This is an optional feature that is available on the Motorola DP2400.

It is a multi-site digital trunking configuration designed for

MOTOTRBRO platform. The feature is used to control the enhanced

capacity offered by Capacity Plus. It also boosts the increased area

coverage capacity offered by IP Site Connect to ensure employees who

are in different locations remain in contact.

Transit Interrupt

This optional feature allows users to cut short other radio

conversations to send critical communication precisely where and when

it is required.


There are two privacy options to choose from when you purchase the

Motorola DP2400 including enhanced and basic privacy. These are

optional features that come with in built scrambling to give you

additional security.

Missed Calls Alert

You do not have to worry about missing calls when you do not have the

portable radio on your person. The device has a feature that allows

you to receive missed calls alerts.

Busy Channel Lockout

If you are busy on a certain channel, you can lockout other calls from

coming in to ensure interrupted communication during crucial moment.

Hardy Design

The Motorola DP2400 is designed for outdoor use. It is sealed tightly

to protect it from dust and wind. It also has an IP55 water protection

rating to prevent damage in case it comes into contact with water.

If you are thinking of upgrading your communication systems, the

Motorola DP2400 is an ideal choice because it will allow you to use

your current analogue system before you can migrate to a digital one.

It a good choice to if you want to ensure a smooth transition.

02 Jul

Are Your Headphones Causing Your Acne?

We all take reasonable care of our stuff, particularly when we wear it, we wash our clothes regularly, we shower, more than twice a week! but when was the last time you cleaned your headphones? they might not look dirty, or do they? this article seemingly does.

Headphones are a necessity for the modern music-lover or phone user but your gadgets could also be taking a negative toll on your skin.

Some things in life never seem to last as long as we want them to: Your last paycheck, free cookies, or (perhaps most disappointing of all), clear skin are all relatable examples. Sure, we know that there are tons of prescribed, over-the-counter, and even some go-to natural ingredients that can treat an annoying blemish in a flash, but wouldn’t it be less frustrating to know why our pimples are, well, popping up in the first place?

While genetics and hormones play a huge role, there are certain sneaky, everyday habits that could be irritating your skin too. Like coveting those beloved gadgets of yours.

For instance, think about how your headphones go everywhere with you—school, work, the subway, the gym—and you slide them on without giving it a second thought. Cranking up the music is totally therapeutic (and yes, great for drowning out an annoying sibling), but it turns out if you’re seeing spots on your temples and jaw line, the headphones you use for your daily jam sessions to Taylor Swift might be the culprit for recurring breakouts.

“Wearing over-the-ear headphones is a perfect setup for causing an increase of acne breakouts and skin infections,” says dermatologist and Simple advisory board member Dr. Debra Luftman. “This is especially the case when you wear them during and after a workout, or if you keep them on for long periods of time. Sweat and moisture collect on and around the headphones, compressing the skin and therefore encouraging bacteria and yeast to multiply.” Gross, but true.

Luckily, a blemish-free complexion doesn’t mean retiring your giant pair of Beats or new Frends headphones for good. To keep them gunk-free, Dr. Luftman recommends giving them a daily rubdown with a makeup remover wipe. (Simple’s Cleansing Facial Wipes are so easy to toss in your bag!) Then, remember to use another wipe to clean the areas around your ears, hairline, and jaw before the next time you toss your headphones on again.

If you find that your headphones get discolored or grimy particularly often, you can also keep a stash of anti-bacterial cloths handy in your purse or backpack. Feel free to pick these up during your next drugstore run. Just be sure to let the earphones dry completely before using them again. The same bacteria that develops from sweat and moisture, can build up from any dampness that stems from your cleansing tools. Come on, putting whatever you’re listening to on pause for 10 minutes isn’t too much to ask now, is it?

Dealing with acne is never fun, but preventing it with these simple tips is music to our ears—literally!

30 Jun

Why Opt For MSA Sordin Headset

Headphones are used for various purposes. While there is no doubt that it is most widely used for listening to music and also to enjoy movies in a private environment, there are many other reasons for which these devices are used. Cancelling noise is very important and it is applicable for different types of activities. Whether it is sports or other applications, these devices are extremely important. They play a big role in helping removing or blocking various types of noises and sounds. They work using a simple technology that is referred to as inverse sound wave. It is very useful while travelling in planes and the inverse sound wave will help prevent noise of the engines. While there are different opinions about these noise blocking headphones, there are certainly some obvious advantages that cannot be overlooked. Let us have a look at them over the next few lines.

Various Uses Of These Headphones

Previously these headphones were used very extensively in the aviation industry because of obvious reasons. Pilots use them even today for cancelling noise emanating from engines. It would also be pertinent to mention here that ground staffs who signal planes also use them not only in civil airlines but also in air forces. It is also very commonly used by shooters to shut down sounds emanating from guns which could affect their concentration.

There are many such brands available in the market today and MSA Sordin is often considered to be one of the most sought after ones. It would be pertinent to have a clear understanding about the various technical features of brands such as Sordin so that customers can get a better picture of the same. These sound cancelling devices are usually connected to a two way portable radios or walkie talkies, which are available in the market. The headphones and other accessories and attachments can also be used and there are many companies which manufacture them.

How It Actually Works On the Ground

The protector headsets come with a noise cancelling microphone which is also referred to as boom microphone. It also has a down load feature and PTT. The down load and PTT directly connect to the two radio systems as mentioned above. This is done with negligible or minimal interference that comes from the outside. Hence whenever there is a need to reduce or totally remove unwanted noise the MSA Sordin device always comes into play. Let us now have a look at some interesting features of these noise reducing headphones.

A Look At Some Useful And Pertinent Features

These devices are very feature rich and offer excellent value for money. The headphones are padded and the soft cushions well and truly provide the right type of comfort. The boom microphones are very useful for communication even in very noisy areas and locations. These devices are also available with or without audio limiters. Quite a few manufacturers allow customization of the audio limiters depending on the specific needs and requirements of customers.

How To Buy The Right Sound Cancelling Earphones

Before buying these devices it is very important to have some understanding about the difference between noise isolating earphones and noise cancellation headphones. What we are talking about in this article is the noise cancellation variants. Hence this point should be made clear before buying them. Audio quality is also an important point to be kept in mind while buying these earphones. You should also make a decision between wireless and wired earphones keeping in mind your specific needs and requirements. Though wireless phones are more user friendly and flexible, they are often more prone to signal interruptions. Price is also a very important consideration when it comes to buying these ear phones.

Going through the right due diligence process is also very important and unless you are sure about the quality, overall features and functionalities you should not go ahead with the purchase. When you buying from reputed online sites, you should look up quite a few brands and choose something that totally meets your specific needs. It is a time consuming process but you should be willing to invest the desired time and effort failing which you could end up choosing the wrong earphones.

16 Jun

Will Niagara Get What It Bargained For? Emergency Radio System Brings Profits to Motorola

It’s always good when you see new radio communication systems being installed and going live on a big scale. Motorola are one of the big companies able to implement these systems, but as you can see below it didn’t all go smoothly, 

This is the first of a multi part investigative series on Niagara County’s new “Emergency Radio Communications System”.

The Reporter plans to  examine the roles of county officials, elected and appointed, a Pittsburg consultant and a Syracuse lawyer, both hired by the county, and a faction of first responders and others. At the dispatch end, we will examine the role of the 2-way radio king, Motorola Solutions Inc., of Schaumberg, Ill. Motorola managed a entire network of people through various channels, at whatever frequency was needed to interconnect and transmit to themselves a lucrative contract, sold, conceived, approved, designed, built, maintained, resupplied, and sold and up-sold again.The series will examine behind the scenes the course of business – as money interests intertwined with public interests and as the project comes online, we will attempt to evaluate whether Niagara County reaped the benefits it was promised or, as is so often the case in other localities, this is another deal where Motorola seems to have alone profited.


Niagara County’s new emergency radio communications system is expected to go “live” in June or July. Reported as a $10 million project, the system’s true cost has not been published. On April 29, the Reporter filed a Freedom of Information request with the clerk of the Niagara County Legislature, Mary Jo Tamburlin, for all contracts associated with the emergency radio project.

Based on estimates of reported cost overruns, consultant and legal fees, and Motorola’s reported contract price, the system cost at least $11 million and, if change orders,  maintenance, rentals and other expenses are similar to other Motorola projects, the final cost may be substantially more.

An FCC Mandate?

In Niagara County, the stated goal of the new emergency radio system was declared to be  undertaken to comply with the FCC’s “narrowbanding” mandate which requires 2-way radio licensees to reduce bandwidth to a narrower (weaker) signal.

The purpose of the mandate, the FCC declared, was to reduce congestion on UHF and VHF frequency bands. Whether public or private, 2-way radio systems were ordered to migrate from  bandwidths of, typically, 25 kHz to a narrower 12.5 kHz or its equivalent efficiency.

The deadline was set for Jan. 1, 2013.

The deadline missed, Niagara County applied for and was granted extensions from the FCC.

The simple change to narrower bandwidth was not what made Niagara County late by two years and five months and counting.

The county melded narrowbanding with a plan to combine every public safety division in the cities, towns and villages in Niagara County, along with Niagara County’s public safety departments, into one unified Motorola designed digital system.

Each independent department would abandon their analog systems and their scores of dedicated channels and share a pool of far lesser channels that Motorola would arrange to help provide.

To be clear — the main cost of Niagara County’s Emergency Radio Communications system was not FCC narrowbanding, but the merger of all public safety’s 2-way radio communications into a single digital Motorola system to be used with top of the line Motorola 2-way radios.

Digital Trunked System Promises Better Communications, New Radios

The system, a microwave network with Motorola radio transmitters on seven radio towers strategically located throughout the county and linked to a dispatch center and a backup center replete with top of the line Motorola equipment. The system does comply with the FCC narrowbanding mandate and in addition promises, as all Motorola ‘trunked’ digital systems do, the ability of radio users on the system to be able to speak directly to any other user regardless of agency or department.

Called “interoperability,” it is perhaps infrequently used except in times of crisis when coordination among first responders can be of paramount importance.

The second feature, one that Motorola contracted to provide, was 2-way radio reception with 95 percent reliability over 95 percent of the land area of Niagara County which, if realized, is greater than the county enjoys collectively with its various analog radio channels. Finally, as a sweetener, Niagara County purchased from Motorola, at, reportedly, a cost of about $2 million some 1850 top of the line 2-way Motorola radios. Normally sold to governments for $5,000 each, Motorola discounted them to not much more than $1,000 each.

County legislators made these available as gifts to every public safety employee whose agency or department joined the new Motorola system. Not every department wanted to join. Lockport Fire Chief Thomas J. Passuite said his fire radios could be bought into compliance with narrowbanding for $3,500.

Lockport Police Chief Lawrence M. Eggert said his department could comply with FCC narrowbanding for $21,900.

Eggert apparently understood that by selling $5,000 list price radios for $1000, Motorola  ensured future sales. In five years or so, when the typical 2-way radio is ready for replacement, Eggert knew his department would have to buy new ones at a price 10 times higher than the $500 narrowbanding compliant 2-way analog radios cost.

The Lockport City Council – under mounting pressure from county officials – overruled Eggert and Passuite’s analog plans – and voted that their police and fire departments must join the county system and accept the gift of Motorola radios – estimated to have a replacement value of $425,000.

Now the Niagara County digital system is, according to County Manager Jeffrey Glatz, essentially finished.

Whether it will achieve the promised 95 percent coverage goals may take some time to determine.


Motorola has Digital Troubles and ‘Shady Dealings’ in Other Cities

In other municipalities, background noise, garbled transmissions and dead spots inside of buildings have plagued Motorola digital systems and some have failed to achieve the 95 percent coverage and 95 percent reliability Motorola appeared to have promised.

In fact, problems with Motorola digital systems are so fully documented that some readers may be surprised that Niagara County officials did not address this publicly before buying  a Motorola digital system. “Fire departments in New York City, Chicago, Los Angeles, Boston, Phoenix and Boise, Idaho — communities that have spent tens of millions of dollars on the new equipment — are so leery of problems that they won’t use digital radios at fire scenes,” reports McClatchy DC News, a publication of the McClatchy Company, owners of Knight Ridder and 30 daily newspapers in 15 states, in a story that was part of an investigative series on Motorola’s business practices, published in 2011.

The McClatchy series prompted the Department of Homeland Security’s inspector general, John Roth, to order an audit to determine whether federal grant money has bankrolled biased contract awards to Motorola.

There are reports, easily found online, published in newspapers across the nation, many of which were available to Niagara County lawmakers when they were considering contracting with Motorola in 2010-2011, that suggest Motorola’s cozy dealings with government officials were something to be wary of.

Dozens of shady dealings with officials of various government agencies were alleged that led to Motorola getting questionable no bid contracts then adding change orders, as they did in DuPage County Ill., where a $7 million, no-bid contract wound up costing more than $28 million.


In Many Places Motorola’s Digital Systems Have Failed

There are as many reports that suggest Motorola’s digital 2-way emergency radios and digital communications systems – like the one Niagara County purchased – have a troubled history.

The City of Chicago, as the Chicago Tribune reported in 2011, spent nearly $23 million on a no-bid Motorola digital radio deal in 2006 for their fire department, “that still doesn’t work after more than five years”.

The Tribune reported that firefighters continue to use their 50-year-old analog radio system.

Chicago Fire Commissioner Robert Hoff told the Tribune that “digital radios have been problematic for fire departments in big cities across the country.”

McClatchy reported that Motorola’s “digital radios’ shortcomings are so widely known that they’ve acquired nicknames. There’s the ‘digital cliff,’ when a radio is out of range and the connection ends without warning. There’s ‘bonking’ — also dubbed ‘the sound of death’ by some Philadelphia firefighters — when an important transmission gets rejected because too many other radios are using the system. Then there’s ‘going digital,’ when a radio emits a garble of beeps and tones instead of a voice.”

Failures of Motorola’s digital radios were blamed in part for two firefighter deaths in Philadelphia, two in Cincinnati and one, on April 16, 2007, when a Woodbridge, Va., firefighter died in the line of duty.

The Prince William County Department of Fire Rescue concluded that the county’s Motorola digital trunked radio system contributed to the tragedy.

And Motorola reached settlements for undisclosed sums with the families of the two dead Philadelphia firefighters.

In Hamilton County, Ohio,  after some $35 million was spent on a new Motorola digital trunked system, a 2008 fire erupted in suburban Cincinnati.

Firefighters Robin Broxterman and Brian Schira perished there after they repeatedly tried to summon help on their Motorola digital radios.

A Colerain Fire Department investigation found that, in a half-hour period, the Motorola trunked system rejected at least 43 attempted communications by firefighters, some of them because 22 agencies and 75 nonparticipants monitoring the event tied up space on the system.

Broxterman’s parents, Donald and Arlene Zang, sued Motorola but lost.

The Zang’s did not sue on the premise that Motorola’s digital trunked system was defective, but that digital trunked systems in general are inferior to analog systems for firefighting.

While the court did not rule on Zang’s argument that a digital system is inferior to analog, the court reasoned that Motorola cannot be held liable for supplying an inferior product, since it was in compliance with what the buyer, Hamilton County, wanted.

More Problems in Ontario, Orlando, Houston

Closer to home, the Niagara Regional Police in Ontario, which converted from analog to a Motorola digital system, had problems with dispatch failures in 2012 and, after repeated failures, the Ministry of Labour had to intervene demanding the department identify the problem for the immediate safety of workers.

In Orlando Fla, for years digital garbling and unintelligible transmissions made the Fire Department’s Motorola digital system worthless.

Firefighters continued to use their old analog radios.

Ultimately, according to Deputy Chief Greg Hoggatt, the digital system was righted and the department is now 100 percent digital.

But problems in other cities continue.

Jeff Caynon, the president of Houston’s firefighters’ union, said problems with Motorola’s $140 million digital system, completed in 2013, forced rescuers to resort during a blaze in May 2013 to use “hand and arm signals and cell phones as a reliable way to communicate.”

As recently as January, Houston’s Fire Department was still having problems with Motorola digital radios – having to frequently discard useless but expensive Motorola digital 2-way radios.

“It compromises the safety of firefighters at emergency incidents,” Captain Ruy Lozano, of the Houston Fire Department, told ABC News in January 2015.

Which brings us back to Niagara County.

Will Niagara County’s Motorola digital system work?

There are certainly cases where Motorola digital systems do work.

Although the successes seem to be a little harder to find on internet searches.

Motorola has Checkered Dealings with Local Governments

So how did it come about that a system with a track record of flaws was pushed through with hardly a word of discussion?

This is a topic that should be explored in depth.

Motorola secured a contract for Niagara County’s digital 2-way business in a way that parallels what the company did in dozens of other municipalities and several states.

In Chicago, Dallas, the San Francisco Bay Area and on statewide systems in Illinois, Iowa, Kansas and Washington, Motorola has been accused of irregularities or of winning contracts through government favoritism.

In the San Francisco Bay Area a $50 million deal imploded when investigators for the Commerce Department’s inspector general’s office concluded that a grant application had  “significant misrepresentations.”

A McClatchy survey of the largest cities in America show that Motorola won 20 of 22 contracts – about half of the time these were no bid awards.

In some municipalities Motorola has been accused of deploying sales staff whose primary tasks is to counsel government officials on how to skirt public bidding laws, something Motorola spokesmen have denied.

Similarities Between Niagara County and Other Municipalities and Motorola

Ironically Niagara County sought to hand Motorola a no bid contract.

The Republican majority on the legislature was ready to vote on a $22 million no bid Motorola contract until it was scuttled, at the 11th hour, not by the savvy resolve of cost conscious legislators but through dumb luck.

Only Minority Leader Dennis Virtuoso called for an RFP and open bidding, but he was ignored.

In many localities Motorola has been accused of winning RFP’s through the aid of friendly government officials and their hired consultants who craft the RFP’s to ensure Motorola wins.

In Niagara County, after several strokes of the most extraordinary dumb luck, to be detailed in a subsequent story, an  RFP was crafted by the county’s consultant and bids were solicited,  much to the credit of certain elected officials – whose desire for the public good, as opposed to Motorola’s, was evident.

But there were some who were ostensibly working, or contracted to work, for the county who, for reasons to be examined, appeared to be working behind the scenes to aid Motorola.

As readers will see next week, Niagara County was accused of writing an RFP that not only favored Motorola but literally excluded any competitor from having a chance at winning the contract, and this, we submit, is based on standards that, once reviewed by competent experts, will reveal themselves for what they were intended to be.

Source - http://www.niagarafallsreporter.com/Stories/2015/MAY12/Motorolai.html

25 May

Photographic Find of the Century Depicts Trench Life in WW1

Although it meant disobeying direct orders (and a court martial if he was discovered), Lance Corporal George Hackney obviously felt a duty to document The Great War from a soldier’s perspective. Now, to commemorate the centenary of the First World War, his incredible photographs are being displayed in public for the first time.

The astounding collection, which includes candid photographs taken in the British trenches – and at least one amazing shot of a German surrender in 1916, was compiled between 1915, when Hackney was first sent to the front lines, and 1918, when the brutal conflict finally ended, and the photographer returned home.

Before he was called up, Hackney was a keen amateur photographer, and it shows. His pictures demonstrate a very accomplished sense of composition, but never feel forced or especially posed for (as some photography from the era can). In fact, the images are easily among the most intimate and credible pictures that exist from the conflict.

Among the most remarkable shots is a poignant image of a lone soldier writing a letter home, as well as another showing a group of soldiers (in full uniform) casually napping on the deck of the ship that would eventually deliver them to the front lines.

At the time these photographs were taken, no unofficial photography was allowed on the front lines. However, using a portable folding camera about the size of a modern smart phone, the Northern Irishman was able to document the war effort discreetly and respectfully.

Hackney then gave the photographs to his own family upon his return. In addition, many of his pictures were given as gifts to the families of the men photographed, sometimes offering grieving loved ones a chance to see their missing husband, brother or son, one final time.

To cite one such example, Hackney’s Sergeant, James Scott, was killed at the Battle of Messines in May 1917. After Lance Corporal Hackney returned home, he presented Scott’s family with three pictures of him, including a striking depiction of the officer looking proud and dashing on horseback.

The Sergeant’s descendant, Mark Scott, was instrumental in uncovering the stories behind these wonderful, and often profound, images…

Hackney’s pictures also provide excellent accompaniment to the war records of the men in question, rendering them as much more than simply names and numbers, or even as symbols of pure courage and sacrifice. Hackney’s photographs present these remarkable men to a new generation as simple Human beings fighting through an incredibly difficult time to be alive.

A photograph taken at County Antrim, which depicts Hackney’s friend John Ewing writing a diary entry (or possibly a letter home), adds a Human element to the historical facts that Ewing was eventually promoted to Sergeant and subsequently won the Military Medal for bravery in the field…

Stories like this abound in Hackney’s work, which ably presents the war in a far more evocative way than the official press photographs and propaganda of the time could ever have hoped to.

When George Hackney passed away in 1977, his family donated the pictures to the Ulster Museum, where they stayed in the Museum’s archives for over 30 years. These unique, powerful documents were, in turn presented to TV Director Brian Henry Martin by museum curator Dr. Vivienne Pollock, in 2012. Martin was shown the images alongside a collection of Hackney’s personal diaries and was captivated by them.

Lance Corporal Hackney eventually became the subject of a BBC Documentary, directed by Martin, entitled, ‘The Man Who Shot The Great War’. The show aired in Northern Ireland earlier this month.

In addition, Hackney’s work is soon to be the subject of a major exhibition at the Ulster Museum.

Mr. Martin is now bringing 300 of Hackney’s images to the BBC for future use, although it is estimated that there are around 200 more that are undiscovered at the time of writing.

Amanda Moreno of the Museums of The Royal Irish Regiment, told Yahoo! News that, “As a collection of photographs of the First World War, they are totally exceptional.”

Interviewed for the film, Franky Bostyn, Chief of The Belgian Ministry of Defense said, “I think you made the photographical World War One discovery of the century.”

100 years on, George Hackney’s unique, vivid and (above all) brave photography presents us with a deeply Human portrait of life in the trenches of The Great War.

18 May

Does The Old Two Cans on a String Thing Actually Work?

It does indeed. The old children’s favourite may have been supplanted somewhat by the relentless march of technology, especially now that almost every kid has a mobile phone and/or access to the Internet, but there is still a lot of fun to be had there.

For those reading this that don’t know, the two cans on a string game involves taking two empty (and preferably washed out) tin cans, the kind you might buy baked beans in, punching a small hole in the bottom of both cans and then threading a length of string in between each hole, tying it in a knot big enough to secure it in the can. Then, when the string is pulled tight, it is possible for one person to speak into the can and another to listen and reply. It also works with polystyrene cups, albeit to a slightly lesser extent. You’d be amazed also at the distance your voice can actually travel using this method.

It is not advisable to use stretchable string for the cans as it just makes life more difficult!

The science behind this game is actually very simple. The vibrations of your voice shake the bottom of the can and that, in turn, vibrates the string. Provided the string is pulled taut and isn’t touching anything, there should be no reason at all for your voice not to travel along the string to be received by your companion at the other end.

In fact, this game actually qualifies as a sort of rudimentary telephone; the theory behind it is very similar.

If you happen to be a parent, this game can keep the kids entertained on rainy afternoons, as well as providing a useful scientific lesson for them. I have many happy childhood memories of playing this game. However, it is very important to make sure that the cans have no sharp edges around the inner rim, for older kids, a simple ‘safety brief’ will probably do, but younger kids might be safer with a little electrical or duct tape stuck around the top of the can (in each child’s favourite colour, maybe? Just a thought). It shouldn’t affect the sound too much, if at all.

It’s amazing the fun you can have with a couple of old cans and a length of string. Hope that helps.

05 May

Experts Investigate Antares Rocket Explosion

Experts are presently investigating the destruction of the unmanned space rocket Antares, which exploded during its launch on Tuesday, October 28th. Official investigations began on the 29th, but no definite cause for the accident has been identified so far.

Almost immediately upon leaving the launch pad at Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia, Antares became engulfed in flames and was destroyed in midair. The falling wreckage caused considerable damage to the launch pad itself.

Although the cargo was lost, there were no casualties.

Antares was carrying around 5,000lbs (2,200 kgs) of supplies, which were intended for the six astronauts currently occupying the International Space Station. The rocket’s cargo included over 1,300lbs (600kg) of dried food, as well equipment for various scientific experiments.

Despite the loss of important supplies and equipment, the astronauts aboard the ISS will still have enough provisions to continue their work.

Frank Culbertson, executive vice-president of Orbital Sciences Corp, the firm that built the rocket, is confident that the cause of the explosion will soon be determined. He told BBC News that,

“We will understand what happened, hopefully soon, and we’ll get things back on track (…) we’ve all seen this happen in our business before, and we’ve all seen the teams recover from this, and we will do the same.”

Mr. Culbertson has also urged locals not to go “souvenir hunting” along the beach, as the rocket had been carrying hazardous materials.

Some business experts are now predicting that Orbital may suffer greatly in the face of harsh competition to supply the ISS.

The investigation could take weeks, or even more, before analysts are satisfied that they have found the root cause of the problem.

In any instance, it seems highly likely that the investigators will place considerable emphasis on the rocket’s AJ-26 engines, which were used to lift Antares from the launch pad.

Earlier versions of these same engines were developed for Russia’s N1 moon missions, which came to an ignominious end after all four launch attempts failed. The second attempt, in 1969, resulted in a calamity that completely destroyed both the rocket and the launch tower.

Another of these power units actually exploded during ground testing earlier this year.

Whatever the cause, this malfunction is expected to set any further Antares rocket launches back for a considerable amount of time.

05 May

Former NASA Employee Claims Astronauts Visited Mars in 1979

A mysterious former NASA employee, using the pseudonym Jackie (presumably for protection from the fibre optic aliens that live in the follicles of her hair) has claimed that she witnessed two astronauts walking on the surface of Mars in 1979.

According to Jackie, she was part of a downstairs team working on downlink telemetry, as it arrived from the Viking Lander. As space-enthusiasts will know, the Viking mission was totally unmanned, but it was the first vehicle to send back images from the surface of Mars.

Apparently fearing neither ridicule nor assassination by the government whose secrets she was wantonly exposing, Jackie broke her nearly 30-year silence and phoned American radio station Coast To Coast FM with her story.

“I wonder if you can solve a 27-year-old mystery for me” she said, “That old Viking rover was running around. Then I saw two men in space suits – not the bulky suits we normally used, but they looked protective. They came over the horizon walking to the Viking Explorer.”

Apparently, Jackie and her colleagues subsequently ran upstairs to see more, but the NASA higher-ups slammed the door in their faces and employed their special training to make sure that national security was not breached any further (e.g. they covered the window with paper so no one could see inside).

Quite how a radio DJ was supposed to clear up this mystery for her remains unclear (perhaps Jesus told her to make the call?), but, in any instance, here I am writing about this nonsense and here you are reading it, so its safe to say that Jackie got what she wanted.

Of course, conspiracy theorists, who never require even a shred of hard evidence to back up their ridiculous claims (and for whom the term Occam’s Razor apparently denotes some sort of shaving utensil) have latched on to the idea (I was going use the phrase gone nuts over it, but when you genuinely believe that the US President is an alien reptile, that becomes far too much of an understatement).

In fact, some nutters are already linking it to the notion that alien life forms were retrieved from a crash site in Roswell, New Mexico in 1947.

Conspiracy theories also abound that Human beings are already living on Mars, despite the fact that anyone who knows anything about space exploration will confidently tell you that this would be extremely difficult (if not impossible) to accomplish now, much less in the late 1970’s.

The greatest geniuses at NASA are working on it as I write these words, so they’ll probably be really p*ssed if it took their professional lifetimes to figure out something that had already been achieved some 30-odd years earlier…

Besides, the Viking Lander, despite being very sophisticated for its time, was still a relatively simple looking design. It seems wildly unlikely that NASA would develop futuristic super-spacesuits, but still employ bulky, moon mission looking tech for its Landers. Unless, of course, they wanted us to think that we were less advanced than we actually are…

Over the years, many supposed former NASA employees have turned up with information about the government’s secret deals with aliens and whatnot. In fact, if these sources are to be believed, pretty much everyone who works for NASA subsequently gains a secondary career as a whistleblower.

According to conspiracy theorists, the CIA will even go as far as to dispatch Men in Black to kill witnesses, or threaten them into silence. These M.I.B’s (uh, here come the M.I.Bs…), however, are apparently so ineffectual that they cannot convince any of these whistle-blowers to shut the heck up. Not even when said whistleblowers show up on The Discovery Channel, their faces blacked out by green and black lighting, talking about piloting flying saucers alongside our secret alien overseers.

As a final thought, if you really believe that NASA faked the moon landings in 1969, are you still willing to believe that a community of Human beings now live on Mars? Just asking.

22 Apr

What Type Of Kenwood Radio Earpiece Should You Use With A Kenwood Radio

Although there are multiple types and designs of Kenwood radios out there, there are only two earpiece connectors compatible with these radios. Kenwood has been able to design their earpiece connectors in such a way that they are compatible with all their vast types of radios. A large percentage of Kenwood radios utilize the 2 pin earpiece connector. Among the most popular radios using the 2 pin earpiece connector include TK3000 and TK3300. The difference between the two-pin connector and the multi pin connector is straightforward. The former features two pins while the latter features multiple pins. However, their performance may not be the same depending on usability and the type of Kenwood radio.

The Two-Pin Earpiece Connector

The earpiece of the Kenwood 2 pin connector is featured by an incredible in-line push-to-talk button (PTT) with an in-built microphone. In addition, it comes with a complete clothing clip and a surveillance acoustic audio tube. This Kenwood earpiece connector can be used with most of the Kenwood radios and it normally sells out at a fair price.

This kenwood for added security. It also features a secure fit tube connector as well as the lapel clip button. These features integrate themselves easily thus ensuring that the final sound output is of high quality. They are also designed with hi-tech microphones which help in reducing the noise level. Unlike other connectors, its wire PTT (microphone) and acoustic tube are separate. This is meant to reduce the amount of vibrations and echoes produced which would otherwise compromise the sound quality.

When it comes to style, the Kenwood radio earpiece connector is a RoHS compliant connector which has the ‘Over the ear’ FBI style acoustic tube which helps in monitoring sound levels. When you see that the plugs have worn out, there is no reason to worry because these pieces feature replaceable mushroom plugs. This is a changeable earpiece connector which allows you to change the connector to the accessory available. Apart from being compatible with Kenwood two-pin, it also works well other devices such as Motorola 2 pin and Icom 2 pin.

The Multi-Pin Earpiece Connector

The Kenwood multi-pin connected earpiece is a unique and tech savvy type of earpiece. But the earpiece is the same to the 2 pin connected earpiece in other areas. For example, both of them share very important features crucial to the audio type produced. Some of these identical features include an in-line PTT button, the surveillance acoustic tube and the clothing clip. When it comes to its value, it is a little bit pricy than the two-pin version.

The Kenwood Radio Earpieces

The performance and aesthetics of every Kenwood radio earpiece can be fostered by spending a little bit more on optional features such as the ‘swivel’ ear loop. Also, you can enjoy better use and comfort by including a steel clothing clip that reduces noise. Kenwood composes their earpieces from high quality cables featuring a toughened surface. The durable surface protects the cable from accidental strain and offers exemplary cushion to wear and tear. These pieces are lightweight allowing them to be carried and used in wherever you travel. They have been designed to withstand consistent strains common with all earpieces making it easier to be used in any environment.

Actually, the types of connectors which are compatible with Kenwood radios are limited compared to its counterparts. Nevertheless, the Kenwood two-pin and multi-pin connectors provide an excellent performance in all Kenwood’s radios making other connectors of no importance. But some people would say it is worth trying using other connectors to taste the difference. Kenwood radio earpieces consist of polycarbonate microphones which cushions your ears from unexpected high sound levels. When the acoustic tube gets damaged it can be easily replaced ensuring that communication remains uninterrupted. Also, the button or the controller is strategically placed allowing easier management of communication.

Most of Kenwood 2 way radios may only be connected by the two varieties of connectors. Thankfully, their equipment is among the best and it can hardly be rivaled. If you would want to have a Kenwood radio for your company, it is futile searching other compatible connectors because the aforementioned two works superbly. Many companies have started using Kenwood radio earpieces because of these hi-tech unparalleled features. Remember that, to gain advantage of uninterrupted communication, safe audio output and additional exclusive capabilities you will have to consider a good earpiece connector for your radio.

19 Apr

220-Year-Old Time Capsule Finally Opened This Year

A home made time capsule thought to be over 220 years old was opened in Boston, Massachusetts, USA earlier this month.

The brass box was originally buried in 1795 in a cornerstone of Boston’s State Capitol Building. It is thought that Paul Revere, the famous American Patriot, silversmith and metalworker was responsible for placing it there, along with US Founding Father Samuel Adams.

Due to the age of the capsule, it took an hour for experts to access the contents of the box. Once the lid had been carefully removed, officials found a copy of the Boston Daily newspaper, two dozen gold and silver coins, various documents and a metal plate engraved by Revere (who was also a famous engraver).

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The engraving is likely to be of special interest to some, as Revere’s work is very highly prized in the United States.

For those unfamiliar with the name, Paul Revere is considered to be a hero of the American Revolution. He is depicted in statues and even has several towns named after him. The company he founded, The Revere Copper Company, still produces copper products to this day.

Samuel Adams, for his part, was a leader in the movement that ultimately became the American Revolution, and also served as Governor of Massachusetts in the 1790’s. Many historians consider him to be the father of the American Revolution.

This time capsule is especially significant because it was originally buried by two such notable men, both of whom were obviously interested in leaving something for future Americans to experience and enjoy.

It is believed that the box was first discovered in 1855 and that its contents were disturbed then before being reburied. As a result of this earlier opening, some of the coins had suffered erosion. However, for the most part, the capsule’s contents appeared to have aged fairly well.

Marcel Comeau, Executive Director of the Massachusetts Archive and Commonwealth Museum, told local news affiliate wsiltv.com that, “We as custodians have an awesome responsibility, the protection and preservation of these materials. They’ve been entrusted to us by generations past, so generations in the future can see them as well,”

Officials at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston have said that the box, together with its contents, would be put on display for a limited time, before being resealed in the cornerstone for future generations to enjoy.

19 Apr

The Perfect Icom Radio Earpiece Ever

They are not just your normal earpieces. Nor are they just anything that lets you listen to your music. For any security guard, detective officer or investigator, ordering for the icom radio earpiece will not just be any other addition. In a world that is revolving around quality innovations, having the best set of earpieces in town should be your least target as a security officer. It can be even better if you do rely on the radio technology to send and receive signals in an institution. Just know that, if you really need some light and top notch earpieces, then this is the perfect offer you will ever get.

Product description

Different with most radio earpieces, this model is exceptionally light and durable to last for as long as you possible. They are easy to use as they don’t drop easily. However, what wows most customers is its audio quality. On trying them out, you will indeed approve of the quality audio that can be excellent for numerous contexts. The PTT or microphone holding clips allow you to simply attach them to your vest. When displaced while walking, you can simply press from the front instead of grabbing the whole unit to get it back in position. Though mostly used by investigators and detective officers carrying out operations, getting them for your security guards will enhance that surety on the quality of signal reception.

How to where them

These exceptional pieces are long wired. You can thus wear them under any clothing that can allow the microphone to be passed down through your sleeves to the cuff where you will clip them. You may also find it comfortable to clip them to the vest or just near the lapel for perfect communication. The length of the wire is about 110cm. add that to the allowance created by these devices and you will have a comfortable receiver to walk around with. For anyone who really understands what the nature of the job demands, then missing out on such top quality earpieces is not likely.


– Electric microphone- it has an in-built electric microphone with a hidden speaker located just at center of the switch.

– Low profile high quality sound- with the flexible and transparent acoustic tube, you are not only assured of top quality sound, but also efficient undercover work as the transparent tube won’t be noticed.

– A 2 jack straight plug –it the 3.5mm mono the 2.5 mono spaced at 6.7mm between each.


The technology used to make the microphone gives you the wide line between this product and some other counterfeit earpieces in the market. It is comfortable and doesn’t strain you around on your job. You don’t need to worry about your undercover job being blown up due to microphone exposure. This is what has made many customers to appreciate icom radio earpiece devices. It can be accommodated in any kind of clothing due to its small size.

Furthermore, its available connectors come in a sleek design that helps perform tasks as you use two way radios. However, you are advised to check for connectors that suit the task at hand. For instance, if one opts for a straight connector pin that works well for marine radios for domestic use, then expect a great difference in the sound quality. Each one of them is designed to work well in certain environments. That’s why buying, there will be certain assets to be considered for a perfect one for your task. All in all, the earpieces offer the best quality sounds for work stations such as real estate, transport, shipping, healthcare and security.


There are no current negative issues about these devices. You just have to ensure that you order directly from respectable sites that sell them. This will help avoid getting fake devices. It also offers you a chance to understand the perfect connectors suitable for certain fields. You will surely have no issues with these earpieces.


For better security performance, you will need the best headsets for communication. Without even getting referrals from anyone, the quality of icom radio earpiece will definitely prove to be the best. You can then enjoy connecting with fellow colleagues, clients and loved ones through this modern innovation. Don’t miss out on the best earpiece around being offered at just £20! Good luck!

17 Apr

How Do Ear Defenders Work?

Are you working in a very noisy environment? Do you find yourself under very loud working conditions? Then, you definitely need the best Ear Defender in order to keep your hearing system unaffected by the surrounding noise.

People can get short of hearing and even deafness if they work in noisy work conditions for long and even short terms. Thus, using a hearing protection aid is a must for them. If you are a professional music player, you need to fit electronic devices like Apple iPod or MP3 style players with your ears. The noises from these headphones can damage your ears and your hearing power can be reduced.

Thus, you need to use the noise reducing headphones for these purposes. These types of devices are also known as the ear defenders, How Do Ear Defenders Work? This can be a first question in your mind.

How the Ear Defenders Work?

The noise reducing or noise cancelling headphone ear defenders work in two major ways. The first one is that these are usually designed to perfectly fit over the years with a thickly padded outer layer.

This layer acts as a physical barrier and blocks the high noise frequencies very effectively of the surrounding environment. These types of headphones are a bit bulky but these are highly effective ear defenders. These headphones are also commonly used in the noisy construction industries and perform very well.

This device leaves the low frequency noises and these get away through the physical barrier portion of the noise reducing headphone. There is a very small microphone inside the headphone that pocks up the unwanted noise or sound.

The highly advanced electronic circuits inside the headphones turn the sound wave into an opposite sound wave and play it back along with the music you are currently listening. The 2 sound waves of the external noise function to eliminate one another.

Because of these two technologies the passive high frequency barrier and the active lower frequency noise cancelling technology and the noise reducing headphones are the ideal for using in noisy environments of any type like offices, train plane journeys, etc. These devices cut off all the unwanted background noises which may disturb you.

Even if you want to listen to music peacefully you can only listen to the music by cutting of the unwanted surrounding noises with the help of the noise cutting headphones. These devices also work effectively while you are talking with someone on your mobile phone and the call is disrupted by unwanted surrounding noises.

How to protect your years?

The sounds are all turned into electrical signals that finally reach your brains. The tiny hairs of your cochlea pick up the sound vibrations. These hairs can get damaged if the sound vibrations are too high. The inner ear damages cannot be reversed.

Noise in the factories is one of the biggest sources of severe hearing losses. Thus, the workers in the factories, who have to work for long hours face serious hearing problems. They must use the most technically advanced ear defender for protection during the working hours.

13 Apr

A Look at the Motorola DP4400

Motorola DP4400 is a device that is capable of transforming your enterprise by making employee interactions much smarter and safer. The device features best-in-class audio and high-tech data capabilities; all meant to bring a new revolution in the world of communication.

The DP4400 delivers admirable voice quality and enables for seamless data communications through integrated GPS and Bluetooth audio capabilities. Besides that, this device is built with an intelligent audio and customizable voice announcement feature.

Because the radio is available in both UHF and VHF frequency bands, it is extremely easy to use. It offers 32 channel capacity and five buttons that are programmable. An emergency button is provided ad well alongside FM intrinsically safe options. Moreover, the device is made with IP57 specifications to enhance submersibilty.

Features of this product in brief

- Advanced signaling capabilities

The radio is available in UHF (403-527 MHz) or VHF (136-1774 MHz). It features 32 channels and 5 tone signalling capabilities. Its large and textured push-to-talk button makes it extremely easy for the programmer to tailor the use of 3 buttons – in order to increase operator efficiency.

- Easy to use and program

Besides being easily programmable, this radio features a Tri-coloured LED which enables for crystal clear visual feedback on the operating status of the radio. There is also an emergency button which is provided to ensure rapid reporting and response during critical situations.

- Effective, efficient and operable

Another admirable feature to be found on the Motorola DP4400 has PPT ID which is meant to improve communications efficiency and system operability. Its remote monitoring features go a long way to ensure user safety alongside enabling prompt assessment of remote user status. To make it even more effective, the radio comes with elegant channel scanning schemes a feat that makes it extremely easy and fast to receive calls every time.

- Enhanced audio capabilities

With a loud front-facing speaker and an intelligent audio feature which is designed to adjust the volume of the radio depending on the noise levels of the surrounding when in use. Besides its powerful audio features, the radio makes it possible to send programmable update messages when messages need to be conveyed without interrupting other workers or guests.

- Wide ranging data applications

This radio features one of the largest collections of Application Developer Programs. All applications are customized to include unique features such as email gateways, location tracking and work order ticket management.

A final word on product

Motorola DP4400’s diverse portfolio and high security features make it ideal for government and public safety.

07 Apr

How Dick Tracy Invented the Apple Watch

Apple CEO Tim Cook suddenly became a little boy again as he showed that Apple’s new smart watch will also send and receive phone calls.

“I have been wanting to do this since I was 5 years old,” Cook exclaimed. “The day is finally here.”

The 54-year-old Cook was harking back to 1965, when any American youngster could tell you that the coolest gizmo around was Dick Tracy’s two-way wrist radio.

The comic strip detective’s creator, Chester Gould, had introduced the futuristic device in 1946, after he scripted Tracy into a jam from which there seemed no credible escape.

Gould decided that he would go high-concept and have Tracy appeal directly to his inky-fingered creator. Gould figured he could then just extricate Tracy from the predicament Manus Dei.

But Gould’s employer, the Chicago Tribune, rejected the idea as a cheat.

Gould then recalled visiting the workshop of an inventor extraordinaire named Al Gross several weeks before. Gross had developed the walkie-talkie when he was barely out of high school. Gross’s more recent projects when Gould stopped by included a two-way radio that could be worn on the wrist like a watch.

Gould now got on the phone to Gross.

“He called and asked if he could use that idea on the wristwatch,” Gross would say in an interview years later. “I told him sure. And he gave Dick Tracy that wristwatch.”

As a token of his gratitude, Gould presented Gross with the first four panels in which Tracy begins using the soon-to-be-famous gizmo. The device proved to be just the thing for Tracy to extricate himself along with his creator from the predicament.

Do you remember the old dick tracy comics? we’re not convinced that Tim cook got the idea from these comics, it’s an interesting idea that the whole of apple was built on the idea that one day they would emulate the comic books.

In the comic strip, the two-way wrist radio is created by a young inventor named Brilliant. He develops another seemingly impossible gadget for Tracy conceived by the real-life Gross: a compact, battery-powered video surveillance camera. This is too much for one of the comic-strip mobsters, and Brilliant meets a bloody end in a 1948 installment.

As a token of his gratitude, Gould presented Gross with the first four panels in which Tracy begins using the soon-to-be-famous gizmo. The device proved to be just the thing for Tracy to extricate himself along with his creator from the predicament.

In the comic strip, the two-way wrist radio is created by a young inventor named Brilliant. He develops another seemingly impossible gadget for Tracy conceived by the real-life Gross: a compact, battery-powered video surveillance camera. This is too much for one of the comic-strip mobsters, and Brilliant meets a bloody end in a 1948 installment.

Gross did enjoy a continuing thrill that had been first sparked when he was still in grammar school. His parents took him on a cruise across Lake Erie from Cleveland to Buffalo, and his destiny was decided when he wandered into the ship’s radio room.

“The radio operator put me on his lap and let me put the earphones on,” Gross would remember. “I heard all of those dots and dashes, and I’ve been interested ever since.”

Wonderment was joined by wondering, and the result powered a lifetime of prophetic tinkering. Gross followed up the walkie-talkie during World War II with a ground-to-air radio system. The U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff credited it with “saving millions of lives by shortening the war.”

Yet the closest Gross came to fame was as a pioneering Citizens Band radio operator dubbed “the Father of CB.” Even in this he was best known not by his real name but by his handle, Phineas Thaddeus Veeblefetzer.

Not that Gross needed recognition. He was still busy in his workshop right up to the time of his death in late 2000, at the age of 82.

Childhood fascination was at the heart of it all, so it only makes sense that his two way wrist radio would have had a similar effect on youngsters over the years, these notably including little Timmy Cook in 1965.

On Monday, Cook said he had been wanting for half a century to unveil a real-life gizmo that worked just like the one in the comic strip of his youth.

One hopes Cook is aware that the two-way wrist radio was itself inspired by the real-life ideas of a visionary who should be as well-known to us as Jobs or Gates.

Gross observed in his later years, “‘If you have a cordless telephone or a cellular telephone or a walkie-talkie or beeper, you’ve got one of my patents.”

And now we can posthumously add the Apple Watch.

Source - http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2015/03/10/how-dick-tracy-invented-the-apple-watch.html

04 Apr

What is PMR Radio and Who Uses Them?

A 2 way radio is basically a radio that is structured to transmit and receive. In general, most voice-wireless communications technology, counting cellular systems, are categorized by two way radio definition. Usually, a 2-way radio refers to a radio system primarily utilized for group call communications. This two way system is also called PAMR Public Access-Mobile Radio, PMR Private-Mobile Radio, LMR Land-Mobile Raido, and PMR Professional-Mobile Radio.

Portable 2-way radios are frequently called “walkie-talkies” or “handie-talkies.” Not much different from “handie,” the term sometimes used to describe mobile phones. While we’re on the subject, it’s probably best to get something out in the open right now. People often interchange the terms two way radio and walkie-talkie.

However, walkie-talkie is chiefly a generic or slang-term for hand portable 2-way radios. Moreover, the term usually implies non-professional, license free, consumer type, or “toy” equipment. When referring to 2 way radios, people are basically talking about professional licensed equipment. A walkie-talkie is generally a hand-held PMR radio. A 2-way radio is of superior quality and utilizes much higher frequencies. two way radios can also be found in mobile and base-configurations in addition to using radio network-infrastructure.

In addition, two way radios are usually decked out with a PTT or “Push-to-Talk” key to trigger the transmitter. Users simply press the PTT key and quickly begin a conversation. The user lets go of the PTT key in order to hear others.

A 2 way radio user can talk immediately with other radio users or utilize radio network-infrastructure. A direct-talk amongst radios, normally referred to as direct more operation/talk-around mode, has restricted reach because of limited radio power. To defeat this restriction, a radio network-infrastructure can be used to expand the communication range.


With numerous choices in wireless technology today and with 2-way radios being one of the first wireless devices, some wonder if this type of radio is still a useful gadget in the current world of technological communication. Well actually yes. There are two main features that differentiates two way radios from other wireless gadgets:

-Instantaneous Communication

two way radios offer instant communication. Users can simply press the PTT or “Push-To-Talk” key and inside a fraction of a second, the user can instantly speak and convey their message. This is because of the quick-call setup time entrenched in the technology. This quick communication possibility is one of the main reasons why businesses and organizations prefer 2 way radios for their operational or tactical communications.

-Group Communication

An additional unique feature of 2-way radios is its ability to facilitate “group-calls” or “one-to-many” communications very effectively. This means that one user can easily communicate with one, five, twenty, hundreds, or even thousands of other 2-way radio users simultaneously.

In other words, there’s no need for users to repeat themselves time and again if they need to communicate with more than one user. Moreover, 2-way radios performs perfectly for group communication using a minimal amount of RF channel-resources. If every user were in the same vicinity the majority of the time, they would only need one-channel resources to speak to hundreds of other users.


There is an abundance of wireless-technology today, and they all have their advantages and disadvantages. The choice of which technology is idea for one’s group or association will depend upon if the technology can satisfy the user’s requirements. For users who need to function in a group, communicate instantly, and remain mobile, a two way radio is the best choice compared to the other wireless technology available on the market today.

You may still wonder how this can be possible with smartphones, iPods, iPhones, tablets, mobile phones available. Here are the main reasons why these technological gadgets may NOT meet the above requirements:

-Instant Communication

Consider this scenario. You are out hiking, run into an emergency situation, and must communicate quickly to confirm your dilemma. If you were using a mobile phone, for instance, you must dial a number, wait while the call is being setup and connected; that’s if you get a signal. The phone must then ring to the other person, and they finally answer, if their voicemail isn’t on! The whole procedure could take several seconds and within that valuable time, your situation could easily worsen.

With a 2-way radio, you simply press the PTT key and yell “emergency” while the other users “immediately” pick-up your signal. This is assuming that RF-channel is accessible. However, there is a way that two way radios features can surmount RF-channel blockage and give highest-priority to emergency calls, a feature not available to other wireless devices.

-Group Communication

Take this example. You need to let your staff know that there has been some changes for a planned meeting. If you have to contact them one at a time, it could become tedious. With a 2 way radio, you can simply select your talk-group, press the PTT key, and begin your message to five, 10, 15, or however many staff members you need to communicate with simultaneously. Now, raise that number to 1000 workers and imagine the work involved if you had to go through cellular phone channels.

Though some wireless systems permit group calls, it usually restricts the amount of group members that you can communicate with at one time. With a 2-way radio, you simply need to speak once and be heard by many.


two way radios have been utilized for many years by numerous industries and associations. Because of the nature of their operational requirements, they use 2-way radios to broadcast their operational and communicational needs. Organizations and industries that may depend on 2 way radio usage are:

-Public Safety associations such as EMS emergency medical services, police, ambulance service, fire brigade, disaster-recovery agency

-Security like intelligence agencies and military

-Transportation industries like subway, railways, seaports, airports, subways

-Oil and gas companies

-Utility companies like cable TV, telephone, water, gas, electricity

-Construction companies for road and bridges, residential, commercial

-Transport service companies like trucks, limos, taxis

-Hospitality industries like tourism, restaurant, resort, and hotel

-Service industry such as towing and delivery companies

-Government agencies like public works, embassies, municipal, district governments, and ministries


-Contractors for roofing, plumbing, excavating, electrical

-And many more…

Overall, those who utilize two way radios are frequently businesses or agencies with many staff members or workers who work in groups and are mobile.


Today, two way radios come with additional or improved features from years before. For example, display screens show important information at a quick glance, keypads lock to maintain channel settings, there are various ring-tones and silencers to choose from along with out of range alerts, and much more!

22 Mar

The Hytera Radios are starting to take some of the digital market from Motorola, what makes them so good?

The PD782, PD785 and PD702 Hytera radios are affordable, as well as being easy to use and providing high quality audio. This is a good combination when it comes to two-way radios, a technology that, by definition, needs to be durable, easily replaceable and effortlessly useable in case of emergency.

The parent company, Hytera, have been operating since 1993 and in that time they have developed a strong reputation as an industry leader. In short, they are in the process of cultivating a trusted international brand. Hytera are an emerging brand with a considerable track record for producing quality technology at premium prices.

Another likely source of Hytera’s recent success is the effectiveness of the Hytera earpiece. The Hytera multi-pin earpiece is designed for use with the PD702 and PD782 radio models. It features excellent playback, as well as being solid and durable. This Hytera earpiece is available for around £25.00 and is a professional level model, proving highly effective for many modern surveillance exercises.

Returning to the two-way radio discussion, Hytera radios include a number of advanced features, including a robust design, as well as a full colour LCD display, something that is a rarity in today’s market. There are also a high number of messaging options.

The PD785 is IP57 rated. This means that it can even be completely submerged for up to 30 minutes without obtaining any significant damage. It can also switch between analogue and digital mode and features full digital encryption.

Hytera have received a boost in sales because they have created a series of products that are up-to-date, hardwearing and professional. Two-way radios need to be reliable as a matter of fact, which is why these products are selling so well.

15 Mar

Natural History Museum Replaces Dippy Dinosaur With Blue Whale Skeleton

Directors of the Natural History Museum in London have announced that ‘Dippy’ – the famous diplodocus skeleton that greets visitors in the museum’s iconic Hintze Hall – will be replaced by the skeleton of a blue whale by 2017.

The idea is to better convey a more modern feel to the museum, one that reflects the cutting-edge science being conducted by the institution.

“Everyone loves ‘Dippy’, but it’s just a copy,” NHM director Sir Michael Dixon told BBC News, “what makes this museum special is that we have real objects from the natural world – over 80 million of them – and they enable our scientists and thousands like them from around the world to do real research.”

At present, the 25m-long blue whale is hanging –in a flat position- in the ‘mammals’ gallery and is accompanied by a life size reconstruction of the animal.

The skeleton was acquired by the museum in 1891 and it originally cost curators £250. The massive animal was beached at Wexford in Southeast Ireland and its remains were immaculately processed and preserved. To date, it is one of the biggest – and best-preserved – whale skeletons in the world.

Over the coming two years, the entire skeleton will be taken down and each individual bone will be thoroughly cleaned and carefully catalogued before it is re-structured and placed in a dramatic new pose, ready to better symbolize the new science of the 21st century.

The massive remains will be placed in a graceful diving posture designed to impress visitors to the hall.

By virtue of being the largest animal to ever exist on our planet, the blue whale skeleton will likely present an even more impressive sight to behold than Dippy presently does. Its presence could also help to raise awareness for whale conservation and preservation of our natural heritage in general.

The conservation aspect of this move is an especially relevant point, as it was NHM scientists that first demonstrated that hunting of the blue whales needed to be stopped in the first place.

This move, whilst surprising, is not without precedent. In the past, the Hintze Hall has also featured a complete sperm whale skeleton as its main attraction, as well as carefully preserved African elephants – and other displays as well.

So where will Dippy be going once his replacement arrives? At present, there is talk about taking the iconic dinosaur on tour in order to bring the Natural History Museum to the people, by housing him in regional museums throughout the UK.

Before that happens though, he will likely still have pride of place in a dinosaur-themed exhibit elsewhere in the museum, so we’ll still be able to stop by and say “hi”..

15 Mar

Natural History Museum Replaces Dippy Dinosaur With Blue Whale Skeleton

Directors of the Natural History Museum in London have announced that ‘Dippy’ – the famous diplodocus skeleton that greets visitors in the museum’s iconic Hintze Hall – will be replaced by the skeleton of a blue whale by 2017.

The idea is to better convey a more modern feel to the museum, one that reflects the cutting-edge science being conducted by the institution.

“Everyone loves ‘Dippy’, but it’s just a copy,” NHM director Sir Michael Dixon told BBC News, “what makes this museum special is that we have real objects from the natural world – over 80 million of them – and they enable our scientists and thousands like them from around the world to do real research.”

At present, the 25m-long blue whale is hanging –in a flat position- in the ‘mammals’ gallery and is accompanied by a life size reconstruction of the animal.

The skeleton was acquired by the museum in 1891 and it originally cost curators £250. The massive animal was beached at Wexford in Southeast Ireland and its remains were immaculately processed and preserved. To date, it is one of the biggest – and best-preserved – whale skeletons in the world.

Over the coming two years, the entire skeleton will be taken down and each individual bone will be thoroughly cleaned and carefully catalogued before it is re-structured and placed in a dramatic new pose, ready to better symbolize the new science of the 21st century.

The massive remains will be placed in a graceful diving posture designed to impress visitors to the hall.

By virtue of being the largest animal to ever exist on our planet, the blue whale skeleton will likely present an even more impressive sight to behold than Dippy presently does. Its presence could also help to raise awareness for whale conservation and preservation of our natural heritage in general.

The conservation aspect of this move is an especially relevant point, as it was NHM scientists that first demonstrated that hunting of the blue whales needed to be stopped in the first place.

This move, whilst surprising, is not without precedent. In the past, the Hintze Hall has also featured a complete sperm whale skeleton as its main attraction, as well as carefully preserved African elephants – and other displays as well.

So where will Dippy be going once his replacement arrives? At present, there is talk about taking the iconic dinosaur on tour in order to bring the Natural History Museum to the people, by housing him in regional museums throughout the UK.

Before that happens though, he will likely still have pride of place in a dinosaur-themed exhibit elsewhere in the museum, so we’ll still be able to stop by and say “hi”..