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Modern System Concepts Inc.

Running, walking and talking—Day 2 at ISC West

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Friday, March 30, 2012

Day 2 of ISC West started off with a bang … as in the bang from the starter’s pistol as I ran in the annual Mission 500 Security 5K, the running race that Security Systems News helps sponsor.

Not only does the race do good—this year the more than 500 participants helped raise about $80,000 for needy children in Mexico, India and Tanzania—but it’s a legitimate excuse to take some time to exercise at this busy show. And this year it featured new event, a 2K walk. I heard from several people on the show floor later that they’ve wanted to participate in the race previously but can’t run 3.2 miles. They said a walk would be more doable and said they may participate in that part of the event next year. So, I’m betting that at ISC West 2013 we’ll see even more people joining in this good, healthy—and fun—cause.

Speaking of Mexico, during my visit to the 2GIG booth, Todd Santiago, president of the Carlsbad, Calif.-based home security systems developer told me the company is expanding to Mexico and other Latin American countries this year. “We see international expansion as a huge opportunity,” he said. “We have significant demand for our security offering.”

He said the company, founded about two years ago, also is doing great in North America, with more than 1,100 dealers now.

Among other Day 2 meetings I had were with a couple of fire dealers who impressed me with their innovative ideas.

One was Carter Rierson, founder and president of Best Defense Security & Fire Protection of Waunakee, Wis.
Among things that Rierson and I discussed were his trademark “cellevator,” a cellular solution that enables people in an elevator to summon help in an emergency. Rierson said customers like his solution because it costs half of the traditional solution, which is a phone line voice connection to an elevator.

I also talked to Mark Popkowski of Texas-based Modern System Concepts, a Texas fire and security company. He told me he’s outfitting all the company’s technicians with iPads. He’s also saving time and money by having them do fire inspections with a new inspection app that his company developed. He plans to beta test the new software and then market it to other companies this summer.

He said the app allows companies to “have multiple technicians out in the field on an inspection and they can be doing one part of the inspection and somebody else can be doing the other” but they both produce one report.