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The Lock and Key System and Why You Should Choose the High-Tech Version

Michael Dunne

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Locks and bolts are reliable and simple security systems that can be easily installed in homes and in commercial establishments. These systems have been used for thousands of years since the early beginnings of human civilization.

Modern-day security threats, however, have become increasingly sophisticated. Some thieves are highly skilled in opening locks of various forms, including combination type locks. This is why high-tech security systems are necessary for homes and business establishments for better security and protection.

History of the lock and key system

The most ancient lock and the key device were discovered in an archaeological site in Nineveh, the capital of the ancient Assyrian Empire. The Egyptians developed a wooden pin lock device that had the basic mechanisms of modern pin and tumbler metal locks.

The Egyptian pin lock system had a bolt and door fixture, which could be opened using a customized key. The pins within the lock were lifted out drilled holes within the bolt when the key was inserted. This allowed the bolt to move while the key was inserted.

Meanwhile, the oldest type of lock device in Europe is the warded lock. It was the most common lock design in Europe from the Early Medieval to Renaissance period. Purely metal locks were developed in Europe from around the year 870 to year 900. English craftsmen were credited for developing these locks.

Robert Barron perfected the design of the lever tumbler lock in 1778. The lock had a set of lever mechanisms that prevented the movement of the bolt if the key was not inserted. The double-acting lever mechanism required the lever to be lifted to a specific height by a key specifically customized for the lock.

Jeremiah Chubb made significant improvements on the lever tumbler lock starting in 1818. He designed locks that had multiple levers that needed to be precisely aligned to allow the bolt to move. Later designs involved spring-loaded pins that also prevented the bolt from moving. The keyless combination lock is a modification of this design.

High-tech modern locks

Classic lock designs are still used today with some modifications.

Many types of high-tech modern locks are actually a result of the convergence among the mechanical, electronic and digital types. The basic lock and bolt design are maintained but some electronic and digital components have been added. For instance, some high-tech locks require biometric keys like fingerprints to be opened.

High-tech locks can range from small padlocks to complex vault locks or blast door locks. The key components are modified to have multiple authentication requirements. These are also programmable and customizable depending on the user.

One of the simplest forms of electronic lock system is the PIN number system that requires the user to enter a pre-programmed PIN on a keypad. This system is also oftentimes integrated with an alarm system that will be triggered if the PIN is entered incorrectly in three successive attempts.

Electronic locks and alarm systems may also be connected to a phone line that can alert the local police. You may also be alerted via your mobile devices through SMS or the internet.

Here are some of the reasons why you should choose electronic and digital lock systems:

1. Added layers of protection

Using digital lock systems will provide your house or establishment additional protection.

Unlike ordinary mechanical locks that can be opened by skilled lock pickers using simple DIY tools, electronic or digital locks are more sophisticated. They require higher skills and more sophisticated instruments to hack.

If the electronic lock system has an alarm, it would provide another layer of protection that could deter would-be thieves.

A simple 4-digit PIN-enabled lock system has thousands of permutations/combinations, 10,000 possibilities to be exact. Most systems are programmed to allow only a maximum of three attempts before the alarm is activated.

2. Convenience of use

Simple mechanical locks need exact key configurations to be opened. The key to a lock needs to be duplicated to allow other members of a family or an establishment to have access. So if you have multiple doors in your house or workplace, you will need multiple keys and multiple duplicates.

Electronic lock systems may only need one master PIN code that can be memorized by authorized persons. On the other hand, the individual fingerprints of authorized persons can be used as keys. Biometric keys are more convenient than physical keys which can be easily duplicated or lost.

3. Flexibility of access

PIN codes, passwords, and biometric parameters can be programmed into the digital lock and key systems. Multiple users can be granted access without needing to bring physical keys. On the other hand, electronic key cards may also be required for employees to serve as their IDs and monitor their attendance.

Digital lock systems may also be programmed to provide multi-tiered security authorization. For instance, some employees of a bank may only have limited access to the bank vault.

4. Easy integration with other systems

You may easily integrate a digital lock and key system with existing systems. In many instances, you do not even need to remove the standard mechanical locks. Alarms, biometric sensors, cameras, apps, and mobile devices can be connected to electronic or digital locks.

It would be possible to remotely lock or unlock doors using your mobile device even if you are hundreds of kilometers away. Depending on your security provider, you may use a special app for this purpose. This way, you can allow guests to enter your house or establishment even if you have not yet arrived. You may simply need to enter the necessary PIN codes via your mobile smartphone.

5. Long-term cost-effectiveness

Considering the various features and benefits of using an electronic lock and key systems, you will be able to save money in the long run.

One common problem with the purely mechanical lock and key system is losing the key. This can be avoided by eliminating the need for physical keys. You will not need to have multiple duplicates of keys for various rooms in a house or work establishment.

The advantages of using an electronic lock and key system truly outweigh those of older lock and key versions and types. Hence, it is the better choice when it comes to ensuring the safety and security of your home and/or business establishment.

Michael Dunne created Safecell Security Ltd in 2001 and acquired Authorized Access in 2013. He is now Managing Director of both companies and oversees the strategic development and day to day running of the businesses. Michael has spent over 20 years in the security industry and specialises in the Design, Installation, Maintenance and Commissioning of electrical security systems such as Intruder Alarms, Fire Alarms, CCTV, Warden Control and Access Control and all Physical security including Key Cutting, Safe & Lock Picking, Suited Key Systems, Automated Barriers & Gates and Shutters, throughout the North West of England.

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Fast Charging for iPhone and Android Smartphones

Steven Sanders

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Fast charging for our portable devices is becoming a more important thing to use. Smartphones are evolving, they’re becoming a lot more powerful, and therefore they burn into their battery power even faster. To offset this problem, companies have made the batteries that go into their phones larger.

This can cause a problem though, as larger batteries need a longer time to recharge fully. That’s where the fast charging tech, such as Power Delivery and Quick Charge come in. Both of these charging technologies are among the most used with smartphones, and we’re going to be going over chargers that make use of both of them.

That’s because most Android smartphones are compatible with Quick Charge, they’re also able to fast charge with a  USB-C Power Delivery port, too. Whereas, the iPhone X, iPhone 8, and the iPhone XS are not Quick Charge compatible, but they are Power Delivery compatible and can be charged with a Type-C port with a C to Lightning cable.

RAVPower USB-C Power Delivery Wall Charger with Quick Charge

Starting off very simple, this wall charger has a single USB-C Power Delivery port and a Quick Charge port. When it comes to fast charging for a Power Delivery port, you have to make sure that the port has an 18W charging speed or higher. Which is what this wall charger has.

Even though this wall charger does have both fast charging technologies, the negative part is that it has a max output of 18W, too. So you can use the full power of a single port only once at a time.

However, the lack of power is made up with the form factor of the charger, as it has a retractable AC adapter that makes the charger into a cube.

Satechi Power Delivery Desktop Charger with Quick Charge

Then there are desktop chargers, which are practically wall chargers, but they have more charging ports, and they use a power cord, instead of a built-in AC adapter. Some might think that the use of a power cord can be cumbersome, but it allows you to place the charger closer to where you want to charge your devices.

This Satechi charger has a very powerful USB-C Power Delivery port with a 60Watt charging speed. You’re definitely able to fast charge an iPhone or Android smartphone with the Type-C port, but it doesn’t just stop there. No, you can actually charge USB-C laptops with this Satechi charger, too, as there’s so much PD charging to use.

The other three ports on this charger are a Quick Charge port and two 12W ports.

To top it all off, the charger has a light sensor, and it dims its LED power light when the charger is in a dark room and the light brightens up when the charger is in a bright room.

AIDEAZ 20,000mAh Power Delivery Quick Charge Wireless Charging Power Bank


One charging product that basically everyone should own is a portable charger. It happens all the time, you know when you’re out and about and then you suddenly get the message that your phone is low on battery power. Panic sets in and then your phone is useless with a dead battery.

All that anxiety can practically be erased with the use of a portable charger, which can charge your smartphone while you’re on the move.

The power bank above isn’t some sort of fancy title that we gave, the AIDEAZ power bank is actually capable of those three things. So the charger does have a Power Delivery port with an 18W charging speed, a Quick Charge port, and yes, you can even place your Qi-compatible phone on top of the power bank and it’ll charge.

One other very cool part of this power bank is its use of an LCD display. The display shows how much power is remaining and what charging method is being used.

Aukey 10,000mAh Quick Charge Power Delivery Slim Power Bank


On the lower capacity side, this is Aukey’s Power Delivery portable charger with Quick Charge. The charger has a 10,000mAh power capacity that can be used to charge most smartphones to full power about two times.

What’s most notable about this power bank is recharging it. That’s because it has three input ports that can be used to recharge it. There’s a Micro-USB input, a USB-C input (which is also the USB-C Power Delivery output), and there’s also a Lightning input port, too. Not many portable chargers make use of a Lightning input port, but it’s a huge plus for iPhone users as they can make use of it a lot more easily.

A charger like this Aukey one is one of the best portable chargers to get, as you have so many options to recharge it.

Aukey Power Delivery Car Charger with Quick Charge


One other charging product that many people should consider using more often are car chargers. The reason that car chargers are so helpful is that you’re not using your phone and the screen is off. When that’s happening, your phone is able to charge at its fast charging rate.

This Aukey charger has a Type-C Power Delivery port, and a Quick Charge USB-A port. The most notable part of the charger though, is that it has a flush fit form factor. Therefore the entirety of the charger is able to fit into a 12Volt outlet and not get in the way and it’s super low-profile.

Anker PowerWave Wireless Charging Stand


Then to top it all off, there are wireless chargers. If you’ve got an Apple iPhone that is Qi compatible, meaning any iPhone that came after the iPhone X, then you’re able to wirelessly charge your iPhone. On the Android side, if you have a Samsung smartphone, having a wireless charger is even better, too, as Samsung wireless charging smartphones are fast charging compatible, too.

The same is true for iPhones.

iPhones are able to have fast wireless charging speed of 7.5W, while Samsung phones are able to charge at a 10W charging speed. The main thing to remember though is that there are select chargers that are able to provide “Fast Wireless Charging”.

The Anker Powerwave Wireless Charging stand above is able to fast charge Samsung smartphones at a 10W charging speed and iPhones at a 7.5W speed. Along with that, you get the stand form factor that makes it easier to use your smartphone while it charges on it. You can also place your phone horizontally as the charger has two coils, one at the top and one at the bottom.

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Console vs. Mobile vs. PC: Three Kinds of Gaming

Steven Sanders

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Video games have come a long way since Pong, and we now have a variety of different genres to play across a range of platforms. Gamers will always debate amongst themselves about the strengths and weaknesses of each platform, but they will nearly always show some form of bias for their preferred gaming system.

Over the course of this article, we’ll be covering the three primary types of game systems in this day and age. We’ll take a look at highly portable mobile platforms, available game consoles, and powerful gaming PCs, comparing each of them so that you can see exactly how they differ from each other.

PC

PC gaming is often seen as the most cutting-edge way to play your games, and it makes sense. A gaming PC is a lot easier to keep updated than a console since you can replace the components as soon as they come out. Console gamers instead have to wait until the next iteration of their system comes out.

Of course, a PC is also much more versatile than a console, as you can custom-make one that isn’t constrained by whether or not it will be feasible on the market. Keep in mind that gaming PCs pay for their impressive performance and graphics when it comes to stability, with the quality of releases depending on their degree of optimization.

Console

Console gaming is often seen as the more convenient alternative to PC gaming, and there is significant overlap between the games that are available on both types of systems. Console games will typically run at a lower frame rate and a lower resolution than PC games due to the inherent limitations of the systems.

Since a game console has to be reasonably priced, then there is a limit to the performance they can output, and yet they provide immense value for money. You would be hard pressed to find a gaming PC complete with a keyboard, mouse, operating system, and monitor for the price of a console.

Mobile

Finally, mobile gaming takes up a huge percentage of the global gaming market, and that’s what makes it so attractive for game development services. Whenever you have a bit of downtime, you can simply take out your smartphone and start playing a game, and the massive number of ads rakes in a tidy profit.

While there are some games (like Fortnite) that are available on mobile, console, and PC, you’ll find that the majority of mobile games are not available on the other systems due to their simplicity. Mobile games usually have simple control schemes due to the difficulty of adapting them to a touchscreen.

Conclusion

There is no “best” way to play video games, so don’t let anyone discourage you based on your preferred platform. We hope that this guide has summarized the differences between each of these kinds of game systems.

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The Pros and Cons Behind DevOps as a Service

Steven Sanders

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It seems as though every component of business computing is being used as a service, including DevOps. The advantages of using devops as a service are obvious: You are able to rent computing resources instead of having to buy and manage them on your own.

However, is it possible to outsource each aspect of business operation? Can DevOps as service work for your organization? Does the cloud collaboration between operations and developments help speed up projects, or does it mean that your company will lose control of business-centric applications?

Before discovering the arguments supporting and refuting devops as a service, it’s good to define the meaning behind DevOps?

What is DevOps as a Service?

The term DevOps comes from the creation of operations and development, two different disciplines. Some traditional companies have departmental silos that make it difficult for IT professionals to work on creating business automation software.

DevOps creates an environment needed for the rapid testing and development of custom business software. Making a DevOps-based collaborative environment is easier for security specialists, IT engineers, QA engineers, and other teammates to ensure that there is synchronization, integration, and synergy between workflows.

To ensure that your DevOps environment is successful, your team will need to use agile software methodologies. The more difficult the project, the more enterprise components you’ll need to ensure that your team works properly.

DevOps as a service allows you to relocate those enterprise resources towards the cloud. Rather than using basic software development tools, DevOps as a service collects the development tools towards a platform that’s hosted in the cloud.

Advantages Behind DevOps as a Service

Here are some reasons why companies are starting to use DevOps as a service:

  • DevOps as a service hides the complexity of information and data flow, which means your DevOps team members can focus on their team specific tools without having to know the entire toolchain. For instance, a software developer can conduct tests through source code management tools, and IT operators can make changes with configuration management tools.
  • DevOps allows users to collaborate as it places tools on the cloud. This allows users anywhere to work together and complete projects.
  • Using cloud-based services is a data-driven process where everyone has the same data set. This leads to better quality control and documentation.

Disadvantages Behind DevOps as a Service

Here are the disadvantages that exist when using DevOps for your IT team:

  • Security is always a huge concern. Your security team isn’t always apart of DevOps and the DevOps teams usually choose speed over security when creating software. With DevOps cloud services, you can create unnecessary exposure and risks, especially if its the transport layer that’s left unsecured.
  • Outsourcing DevOps infrastructure will require some level of software development expertise, including having an understanding of orchestrating a workflow, infrastructure, and integration. You’ll need experts and tools of DevOps as a Service in order to be successful.

Conclusion

When you’re using DevOps as a service, you’re increasing your IT teams’ productivity. And if you’re thinking about making a new DevOps strategy, DevOps as a Service will help shorten the time to deploy apps and will give you versatility as you create new business process applications.

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