The Smartphone with Flo and the Faceless Shadow

“There will come a time when it isn’t ‘They’re spying on me through my phone’ anymore. Eventually, it will be ‘My phone is spying on me.” ~ Philip K. Dick

Why on earth would a manufacturer build a standby feature into a CCTV recorder? The idea is beyond me, surely the purpose of CCTV is to have continuous 24 hour recording?

Yesterday, my brilliant Tech/CCTV/Satellite/TV guy was here doing a couple of repair jobs. The satellite receiver had begun to crash and the CCTV recorder was  stuck in standby mode.

Unfortunately, none of my main rooms overlook the front door and driveway, so while my man was here, I asked if I could have my door entry intercom system changed to a Smartphone entry system.

Changing the intercom has been a dominant thought for some time, in fact, almost a year ago I wrote a fictional post on the subject for my dormant site Facts and Fiction. A post that I have re-blogged here. Flo and the Faceless Shadow

the-parcel-man-2pngThe bell on the secure door entry system rings and Flo picks up the intercom. A man answers “I have a parcel for you,” Flo begins to worry, she cannot see the front door from her kitchen, it could be anyone.

Flo is feeling nervous she doesn’t like being in the house on her own. She’s even frightened of her own faceless shadow. Flo walks towards the door, she hesitates and instead enters a room that has a view of the driveway and more importantly of the front door. She recognises the parcel man and breathes a sigh of relief.

Meanwhile, the parcel man is becoming impatient, he’s annoyed that Flo is keeping him waiting. He presses and holds his finger against the door entry buzzer, he doesn’t know that Flo is frightened of faceless shadows.

Flo unlocks the two doors. The delivery man glares at her. He’s running late, “Sign here” he tells her.

Flo relocks the doors and opens her parcel. She picks up the telephone and smiles whilst she dials a number. “It’s arrived, the door entry video system, when can you come over and fit it?

Flo and the Faceless Shadow first published on Facts and Fiction February 2017

A useful feature of the smartphone system – the ability to see and speak to whoever is at the door while using my iPhone or iPad and, from wherever I happen to be, even if away from home. The doorbell will ring/chime as usual, but with a camera and intercom in place I can choose whether or not to answer the door, and I’ve already decided which of my visitors will be ignored!

© 2018  In response to the word-prompt Dominant

15 thoughts on “The Smartphone with Flo and the Faceless Shadow

  1. One could have interesting expansions on the theme we have had with mobile phones and the next-door neighbour …
    ‘Can T come over? I need to go out for a while and can’t take her.’
    Response 1: ‘Sorry, but we’re in London at the moment.
    Response 2. (nearly a year later) ‘Sorry, but we’re in Cape Town at the moment.’

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh I like that Les. There was a time when my relationship with my phone was virtually non-existent, which led to my deputy headteacher to announce in a staff meeting that if anyone needs Sue W send her an e-mail, she’ll reply within seconds, but if you send a text she may or may not reply next month!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh I like that Leslie. There was a time when my relationship with my phone was non-existent, which led my deputy headteacher to announce in a staff meeting that if anyone needs Sue W send her an e-mail, she’ll reply within seconds, but if you send a text she may or may not reply next month!


    1. Initially, I was going to swap to the intercom video, but liked the idea of the smartphone system and when it turned out to be far cheaper than the former, I decided to go with it. Mine will use the existing wiring, but a wireless option is available with batteries that can apparently last six months to a year. I’ll message you and let you know how I find it Peter.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. gc

    It sounds Susan like the world is beginning to be populated by Phillip K. Dick folks ( normal folks thrown into extraordinary situation) through no fault of their own ( a definite Science Fiction realm of my hero Dr. Who.) who are trying to cope the best they can with technology that is way beyond their immediate grasp and understanding.

    Here is a case in point.

    To gain entry to my apartment suite block a special intercom connection has been created that allows users to answer their door buzzer through their phones ( cell or landline).

    Much fuss was made and residents were encouraged to present their phone number to the office. The older style of security button entry was suspended for our unit.

    Ove the past year I have noticed that tenants have submitted a number that is related to their cell phones. When a visitor presses the intercom button the phone number associated with that suite is activated and the number called. Sounds simple enough. Yes? Well in actuality the answer is a definite no.

    Many of my fellow tenants have put their cell phone answering setup on email and while the potential visitor is standing patiently in the small lobby they are hearing a message that tells them the following: ” Thank you for calling my number. At the tone please leave a message and I will get back to you as soon as possible. Thank you for your call”.

    Does that type of system make sense to you.

    I informed management that many of the newer tenants might not be aware of this electronic arrangement ( or derangement) and have been told point blank, “that is their problem.”

    It is the type of asinine situation that would have Doctor Who pulling his hair out by the roots.

    At times then it seems Susan that it does make sense to be wary of not only faceless shadows but visible morons to boot. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I can understand the fuss, not everyone embraces new technology and why should they? In this situation, given the multi occupancy of the building it would make more sense and be more user friendly to have a simpler access system.
      I am totally against pushing technology upon those who are not ready to accept it.
      You and I are the exception, we welcome and enjoy. Most older people do not keep their phones switched on 24/7 and why should they? I know many people who are 20 years younger than you and I who would struggle with a entry door system such as this. Thank you Gerry, 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    2. Fortunately, I will have the best of both worlds, a normal doorbell/chime plus the alert on my phone. No doubt I’ll be full of it when it’s fitted and you’ll be tired of hearing me talk about it. Remember how I was when I got the first Dash Cam? I’ve lost count of all the videos I made you sit through!


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