Piper nv: Super Easy — Home Automation and Night Vision {w/ Giveaway} #MyPiper #PiperSecurity

Automate and Monitor your home with the Piper nv system

This is a sponsored post

I’ve been using the Piper nv for several weeks as an addition to my home security. We recently returned from our summer vacation and the Piper nv was added piece of mind to have while traveling. The Z-wave technology allowed me to connect other home automation processes, such as controlling lights, additional sensors monitoring doors and windows, not to mention night vision technology that allowed me to log in and check on my house, even at 3:00 a.m.

With Piper, You’re Always Home

The Piper nv is about the size of a soda can and connects to your smart phone via wi-fi. You can place it where you would like in your home, or use the adapter and mount it. This photo was taken when I was in Florida and had turned the lamp on in the living room using Piper. However, images taken using only the night vision feature were also crisp and clear.

Piper nv Home Automation and Security

Visual Impact with Night Vision and HD Camera  

The resolution is great. While I’d love for it to have the clarity I have when I’m looking through my camera with a prime lens on it, the HD camera features a 180˚ iewing angle and a 3.4 megapixels. (The original Piper had a 2 megapixel camera.)

Automate and Monitor your home with the Piper nv system

Home Vital Statistics

With Piper, I am able to log in and check on things at different times throughout the day, as well as turn lamps on and off, and not worry about an automatic switch or timer starting, or not turning off. Piper nv kept me alerted to temperature changes in my house, severe weather issues, and when my best friend forgot to set Piper nv to the home setting when she was in watering my plants I was sent a text message and video started recording.

This photo is a screen shot of my “Home Vitals” as monitored by the Piper nv. This is the past 48 hours in my home, showing temperature differences, changes in light, when people are moving, and spikes in sound.

Piper nv Home Vitals {adailypinch.com}

 Two-Way Audio

It’s surreal checking on your home while you’re away and hearing the train chugging by as you sit in your hotel room far away from any train tracks. The two-way audio provided by Piper allowed me to check in and do not only a visual, but auditory check.

As you know, I have a teen and his favorite thing to do so far on his summer break is nothing whatsoever. When I’m in my office working, I like to open up my Piper nv app and use the two-way radio to talk to him. I’ll be honest with you, I normally start whispering his name to see if I can get his attention. It’s also brought a little relief while he’s cooking to make sure I’m not walking into a huge mess in the kitchen.

Stay connected with two-way audio on the Piper nv

 

What is Piper nv missing?

Not much. If your wifi was to go down while you’re away, your piper would not work. There is also no current way to export or access the data from the device. After checking their site, I couldn’t find anything about a public API, but that doesn’t mean it won’t happen in the future. My husband is a big fan of the website “If-This-Then-That” and is hoping he’ll be able to integrate Piper into his IFTT automation scripts.

Would I buy Piper for myself?

Without a a doubt and there are more on the way for my home, along with sensors for every window, as well as more plugs for me to automate outlets in every room. All of these items connect together and are easily monitored and controlled by your smartphone or tablet.Win a Piper nv on A Daily Pinch

Win a Piper nv!

Do you want to win a Piper nv of your own? Please enter my giveaway hosted by Rafflecopter. It runs until midnight on July 5 and the winner will be notified July 6.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
You can also visit these blogs for more chances to win a Piper nv of your own!

Piper nv: Automate & Monitor Your Home in Less than 10 Minutes by Thien Kim of I’m Not the Nanny

Piper nv Home Security Camera by Michele McGraw of Scraps of My Geek Life

Piper nv: Easy to Use and Upgraded Camera Automates & Monitors Your Home (w giveaway!) by Leticia Barr of Tech Savvy Mama

Read more about the Piper nv here: Securing your home during summer vacation with Piper nv

Piper NV Technical Specs:

  • Night Vision
  • Enhanced HD Resolution
  • 3.4 Megapixel Camera
  • 180 fisheye camera to monitor in many directions.
  • Pan, Tilt, Zoom & Quad-view
  • Motion sensor
  • Temperature sensor
  • Humidity sensor
  • Light sensor
  • Sound meter / microphone — you can listen to what’s going on in the room remotely
  • Internal accelerometer — to tell if someone is tampering with the Piper unit

Find Piper Online:

Piper: http://hubs.ly/y0Try20
Piper NV: http://hubs.ly/y0Try20
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/PiperByiControl
Twitter:  @HelloPiper

Giveaway Terms and Conditions: 

  • Open to legal residents of the fifty (50) United States and District of Columbia, Eighteen (18) years of age or older. Void where prohibited
  • Approximate retail value of the prize will be $279 USD, courtesy of Piper. No substitutions or cash exchanges.
  • Winner may be required to provide email, shipping address and/or phone number for shipping purposes ONLY. Information will not be used for anything else.
  • Winner is selected by a random Rafflecopter drawing.
  • Winner will be notified via email ONLY.
  • Winner has 24 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen.
  • Complete contest rules, prize description/value/number of prizes available upon request.

Disclaimer: I received products from Piper for testing purposes and was compensated for this post and giveaway. All opinions contained herein are my own.

Wordless Wednesday: Snoopy at Kennedy Space Center

Snoopy at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. {www.adailypinch.com}

I was in Florida last week and toured Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral. From a historical, scientific and pop culture perspective, I was jazzed. You can imagine how happy I was to see my favorite beagle, Snoopy, located at the Apollo Space Center located at Kennedy. He’s there to commemorate the Apollo 10 flight into space where a Snoopy lunar module and a Charlie Brown command module entered lunar orbit. Apollo 10 paved the way for Apollo 11 to land men on the moon.

Snoopy at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. {www.adailypinch.com}

The family of “Peanuts” creator Charles Schulz along with Charles M. Schulz Creative Associates and United Media donated a 5-foot-tall Snoopy statue to NASA, honoring the space program’s 50th anniversary.

For over 40 years, Snoopy has been the mascot for NASA’s Space Flight Awareness Program, an award that recognizes employees’ contributions to the space flight success. These employees are given the Silver Snoopy award, a special honor awarded to NASA employees and contractors for outstanding achievements related to human flight safety or mission success.

 

What I’ve Learned and Where I Get It All Off of My Chest

It’s time for “What I’ve Learned.” This is going to be long and ardouous, but it is what I have learned and my thoughts and feelings to go along with it. It is things I have needed to say and haven’t said, because I haven’t had the words. Even now, I don’t know if I have the words, but it’s all I have.

I’m going in a timeline that started when I was on vacation. There are no dates, but this is how I learned everything I have to share.

1. Sudden loss leaves you raw and questioning your own mortality

My friend John Rich died at 46 last week on a heart attack. Tony was looking at Instagram and handed me his phone and there I saw the post from his wife, Christy, annoucing his passing. He was four years older than me. That’s one way to make you look in a mirror and consider your life.

This man was larger than life and never met a stranger. He took you in and made you part of his family. One of the best days I ever spent was at his shop in Braselton, Georgia, sipping Rye Whiskey and solving the worlds problems with him and my husband.

He left behind three beautiful children, a lovely wife, and a swarth of people who loved him fiercely.

John’s heart was bigger than his body could handle, I guess. Because I know he left a hole in all of the lives he touched that will never be filled.

2. This isn’t my South

I spend a lot of time in Charleston, so much I can give you directions as easily as a native. It is where I go to reboot, recharge and to find inspiration. It is a city that holds my heart.

Last week, a young man murdered nine people in this city I love because the color of their skin is diffferent than his.

That is not my South.

Many years ago, on a farm deep in the Foothills of North Carolina, my great-grandfather eeked out a living at, and below, poverty level for his family. When it was time for the cotton and other crops to be picked, the neigbors would go from farm to farm to help. When it was time for them to sit down to eat, his black neighbors told him they would wait to eat until after the white people were done. This was the 1940’s. He told them they were in his home and they would all sit down together, there would be no seperate meals. That is my South. Where there are no seperate meals because the color of your skin is different. I learned at an early age that just because you hold more pigmentation than I do that it does not mean you should be treated any differently.

Like anyone born where I was, there were the friends who did believe we were different and that black people were not equals and something to be abhored and feared. I’ll go ahead and tell you, they feel the same way about people from other countries and ethniticies as well. When my husband asked me to marry him, I was patted on the head by a relative and “consoled” by a few caring souls, that it was okay; because my Asian husband was “white enough.”

I had several very close white girlfriends who I love to bits to this day who married black men. When they were dating them, I heard them called “_______ lover” and “gray.” Have you ever heard the term “Gray girls?” It was flung about here and there and described girls who dated black guys. Since they were my friends, I was called “_____ lover” and “gray.” It didn’t bother me then and it sure as hell doesn’t bother me now.

This is the same place where I remember seeing there were cross burnings by the local KKK on the courthouse lawn. I never attended one, but I read the paper every day, so it wasn’t hard to not know it was going on.

I have met White Supremacists and Skinheads who told me I was a “perfect specimen” because of my white-blonde hair and blue eyes. To this day, it makes me want to go shower my skin raw. I’m not sure they’d feel the same way knowing I have several direct linegae (great-great grandmothers) relatives who were Cherokee Indians.

Hating someone because of the color of their skin is wrong. Opening fire on them because “they rape your women” and other hate filled messages Dylann Roof has shared in his manifesto and to the people who were at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church before he murdered them are bullshit.

I’ll go ahead and tell you, all of the people I know who have been raped were raped by white men. All of the crazy batshit terrifying events in my life have been because of people with whom I share the same color of skin — including relatives, but that’s further down the page.

The flag, that horrible flag that stands for some skewed view of “Southern pride” and “values” is not my flag. It never has been. It never will be. Put it where it belongs, in a museum. I’m borrowing words from my friend Brandon, because he expressed them better than I can right now:

The “heritage, not hate” argument doesn’t fly anymore, and neither should this flag.

As a comparison, since the Neolithic era (10,200-2,000 B.C.), the swastika was (and still is for some cultures) a sacred and auspicious symbol. But Hitler and the Nazis twisted and ruined it. Any reasonable person who has studied history will know how offensive it is to fly a swastika.

Just because a symbol once held meaning doesn’t mean it can’t turn into something dehumanizing, like the swastika did and now the Confederate flag. When that happens, it’s time to relegate it to history.

Did you know that on April 2, 2000, that Charleston Mayor Joe Riley organized a five-day protest walk from Charleston to Columbia to promote the removal of the Confederate Battle Flag from the Statehouse grounds? The protest was held on the statehouse grounds on April 6, 2000. This isn’t a new thing, the call for removal. During that time, they conceded and moved it off the top of the statehouse and to the grounds, where it has flown since.

We are better than this in the South. We have always been applauded for our manners, genteel ways, and acceptance. It’s time to stop talking out of both sides of your mouth, people. If you want to fit this description, it is time you walk the walk and talk the talk.

Now my friends are terrified because of the people who tell them they aren’t okay and that it’s okay if they open a gun up and kill them. Don’t bring up the cop shootings to me when arguing this point and saying they happened in cities outside the South. Don’t — that is not this conversation. I will tell you point blank, this is about nine people who died in one of the holiest places I have ever stepped foot into, Emanuel AME.

They died because of some old racist rhetoric started by people who were afraid. Why were they afraid? Because they were different. Yet the only difference was the pigmentation of the skin. Let me let you in on something, Jesus Christ was born in Jerusalem. You know, the Middle East. I’m pretty sure he wasn’t white either. After all, Jesus was hailed as King of the Jews.

If you want to know more of how I feel, read the Psychology Today article and its thoughts on the anti-intellectualism movement in this country:

Yes, even intelligent and educated individuals, often due to cultural and institutional influences, can sometimes carry racist biases.

But critically thinking individuals recognize racism as wrong and undesirable, even if they aren’t yet able to eliminate every morsel of bias from their own psyches or from social institutions. An anti-intellectual society, however, will have large swaths of people who are motivated by fear, susceptible to tribalism and simplistic explanations, incapable of emotional maturity, and prone to violent solutions.

It’s true. We wouldn’t be human if we didn’t carry bias. We’ve all carried bias and we always will carry some form. If I said I didn’t have bias, I would by lying. My friend went to the movie theater. She’s black. And she sat there, afraid. Afraid she would be someone’s target. And no one should ever feel that way. Ever. Especially not because of the color of their skin.

Even now, I don’t understand racism. I just know that it exists and I won’t stand down.

There are too many people to name who shaped me and my world views. I’ll leave the names of the people who should be shaping the world views of everyone:

  • Cynthia Hurd
  • Rev Clementa Pinckney
  • Rev Sharonda Coleman-Singleton
  • Tywanza Sanders
  • Ethel Lance
  • Rev Depayne Middleton-Doctor
  • Susie Jackson
  • Rev Daniel Simmons Sr
  • Myra Thompson

3. Guns

I like to shoot guns. But I like going to a nice club and shooting skeet — visually chasing a piece of clay and checking my hand eye coordination — that’s it. I grew up in a house filled with guns, all located in in a locked gun cabinet, and I knew that if I ever touched them I would have no skin left on my backend. I was also taught to never pick up a gun when I had any emotions running through me — they were a deadly weapon and should only ever be handled when you were in full control of your faculties.

But there has to be stricter gun control in this country. Dylann Roof, while the gun was sold to him legally, had a pending drug charge. It is my opinion that if you have any pending criminal charges, you should never be sold a gun, period. There should be stricter laws on what size clip and the type of bullets sold to the public. No one needs a gun with a clip that holds nine rounds of ammunition unless it is called for by their job.

I worked for an attorney and we had many “50-B” clients. Domestic violence cases. Where we represented people who were filing charges against someone they were afraid of. I also lived in a home where domestic violence was the norm until I was 10 years old, my father putting a gun to my mother’s head in front of me many times. I’m thankful that trigger was never pulled. But those people, men and women alike, who have domestic violence charges, should also not be allowed to own or carry a gun.

I’m also a realist and know that even with a radical change in gun laws, there are still more weapons being traded from person to person that people will never know about. There are guns without serial numbers being bought and sold routinely in transactions that cannot be traced. It’s not just on a black market, it’s also being done by people you would never suspect.

It’s funny, if you commit a “white collar” felony, you can’t own a gun or vote in an election. But there is nothing out of those “lesser” charges that are much more violent.

4. Fatism 

Last Thursday, I walked into a restaurant with my husband and son in Cocoa Beach, Florida. Seated at a table near the front was three women. I tried to ignore then stares from them, but I couldn’t stop ignoring it when they started pointing their fingers, using their hands to mimic my body shape, and were laughing and talking among themselves.

I confirmed my suspicions that they were making fun of me for being fat when I walked past them on my way to the bathroom and could hear their conversation.

I don’t know what lesson I have learned from this experience, other than learning to hold my shit together and not let anyone see how they affected me. Even now, I don’t know how I feel.

5. Fear

I’ve seen a lot of fear. On Saturday, I stopped in Savannah on the way home from our vacation for lunch. As customary, I sat in Franklin Square to watch the world go by and take a respite from the heat.

On the west side of the square at 23 Montgomery Street is the First African Baptist Church, recognized as the oldest black Christian congregation in the country. The church was organized in 1788, 12 years before the first Baptist church for whites was built in Savannah.

The church was a haven for runaway slaves during the Civil War. The runaways were hidden in a 4-foot high space between the basement and foundation below. The air holes can still be seen in the basement floor. During the 1960s, the church served as a base for the Civil Rights Movement.

At the doors were the people who attend this Church, standing what appeared to be guard. I didn’t ask, but I should have. But I know there were people in the church and I am going to assume they were there to make sure they were safe. I don’t blame them, but I don’t like seeing their fear and knowing they are scared while they are in their place worship.

6. Speeding

I got news earlier today that my cousins Julie and Amy, sisters, each lost a child in a car accident. They were young people, sitting in the back seat and speeding was involved. That’s all I know.

But I do know this, speed kills. Distracted driving kills.

Slow down. Pay attention to what you’re doing. Put your phones down. The life you might save may be your own.

There you have it. I thought writing it all would make me feel better, but it really just makes me more determined to be a better ally and to open my mouth even more. People hate a loud mouth broad, but that looks to be part of the role I’ve been given in this life.

Best Fiends: From the Green Glades to the foothills of Mount Boom

best_fiends

I’m a phone or pocket gamer. You know, the person you see sitting in the carpool line, head down, looking at something seriously and with laser focus. I’m not texting, I am gaming. So when the makers of Best Fiends reached out to me and said “Hey! We’d like you to play out game and let us know what you think about it” I was all for it. I am a Best Fiends fiend.

Get ready for the slime of your life

Best Fiends by Seriously

FIEND (NOUN) [/FEEND/]: “A MYTHICAL, MISCHIEVOUS LITTLE CREATURE INHABITING THE WORLD OF MINUTIA.”

My life is super fast and I am online consuming and producing an enormous amount of information daily and there are times I just want to shut my brain off. Gaming on my phone is how I take a few minutes to clear my head and not focus on anything. It’s like a shortened form of a novel, except this novel has visually stunning graphics, a soundtrack that doesn’t drive me nuts, and adorable creatures who do a celebratory dance when I help them defeat a slug and we head off on our next adventure. It’s a quick fix that allows me five minutes here and there to clear my head as I travel through the land of Minutia as Lisa Savior of the Best Fiends.

The small creatures who inhabit Minutia lived in harmony until a meteor struck and smashed into Mount Boom, transforming the Slugs who lived there into this cranky army of greedy, greenery-gobbling pests. It is my role to help the heroes fight back and I love a good story where the good guy saves the day and squashes the slugs while on an epic quest to not only save his parents, but beat back the slimy trail left by the Slugs. So much more fun than sitting in carpool wishing the line would move or a cool breeze would blow through to cool me off.

Best Fiends Brittle

Confession time: I can be something of a nag when my husband drives because I’m pretty sure he doesn’t think the legally posted speed limit applies to him and reading while riding makes me carsick. (Yet, I can fly and read. I’m so weird.) We have been on vacation for the past week and I spent 3 plus hours in the car playing Best Fiends yesterday. That’s right, Best Fiends helped me maintain the status quo as we were driving up I-95 from Florida back home. My husband still likes me and I didn’t ruin the chill vacation mood. Instead of saying “it’s a 60 zone, not 80″ I was happily ensconced in Minutia, battling Slugs while he battled traffic, cheering when I defeated the cranky gastropods and growling a little when I ran out of energy and had to wait for a refill. Oh, don’t you need a break honey? Let me drive. We’ll switch when my energy is full.

Best Fiends -- Free Fun by the creators of Angry Birds!

 

Who is my favorite fiend?

Edwards is my favorite fiend. He’s a sad little skeeter who’s ashamed of his family’s bloodsucking ways. His mission is to undo the damage done his kind and has teamed up with Malaria No More to help end this vicious disease that infects 200 million people a year.

Help Edward End Malaria -- Best Fiends

I also really like Temper. He does a little celebratory jump when I win my puzzle and level up.
temper-big_2-395x350

Need to know:

  • Best Fiends is free to download on the App Store, Google Play and Kindle: http://bit.ly/fiendapp
  • There are in app purchases, so if downloading for the kids, make sure you have your phone set to block these types of purchases

Find Best Fiends Online: 

Online: http://bit.ly/fiendapp

Instagram: https://instagram.com/bestfiendsofficial/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/bfiends

Twitter: https://twitter.com/bestfiends

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/SeriouslyHQ

Google+: https://plus.google.com/117967944676870225340/about

Learn more about the Best Fiends Score:

Seriously Digital Entertainment:
Best Fiends is the first property from Seriously, an entertainment and gaming start-up made up of a world-class team of industry veterans. Together, the team has worked on games that have over two billion downloads at companies such as Natural Motion, Disney, Remedy, Fox, Supercell and Rovio.

Disclosure: I was paid to play Best Fiends. Sometimes I can’t believe this is my life, but getting paid to game is up there with winning the lottery.  Any opinions are mine. If you need me this week I’ll be trying to beat Level 62. 

Wordless Wednesday: Asheville, September 2009 — Sacred Moments

I’m revisiting some older images this week on Wordless Wednesday. How old? I shot these back in 2009, so quite old. They were shot on the tiny Kodak point and shoot camera that I used to carry everywhere with me.

Two of the shots are very personal to me, one is my Grandmother reading the paper on the street, taken just a few months after my Grandfather died. The other is my best friend, who met me for the day in Asheville. She is also reading the paper while sitting on the steps located on Wall Street. One is a relic of days gone by, a working pay phone. It’s still there. When I run across one, I leave a few quarters in the coin slot for people needing to make a call, or for the homeless.

These images aren’t perfect, the color is only as good as you can get with a point and shoot camera. But they are mine and they speak volumes to me — to find the quiet moments because they are sacred.