In the geeky world of IT security, one of the more interesting concepts* is that of a ‘false positive’. This is a false alarm triggered as one of a myriad of virtual tripwires, which protect the crown jewels of confidential information, is fooled into believing an electronic attack is in progress.
Back in the real world, my ratio of false positives to actual intrusions is exactly one to one. Well it was until last night, when an extremely sophisticated warning system was nosily convinced the house was on fire.
Because we live in a house that was once commercial property, it is rigged with the full quota of safety lights, fire doors and bright red fire bells. We’ve never been close to ripping the system out because it a) represents the DNA of the building and we should respect that and b) would be a massive pain in the bum to do.
Which is all lovely until it explodes in audial warfare at 2am when every living creature should be asleep. If you happen to be having one of those dreams where you’re desperately dashing around deserted school rooms in the buff, the whole experience is heightened by a shiny red bell going ballistic outside the door.
My VTOL approach to bed exit was brought down to earth with a crushing thump that really wasn’t the kind of gentle massage my poorly shoulder needs. A multi limbed struggle with a dressing gown was more than enough time for the cacophony to stop. By which point, every human, feline and canine in the Leigh household were both wide awake and noticeably concerned.
Except for Murf. He was just delighted to find his pack milling about, leaving him ample time to snaffle some illegal food while we flapped. Next door announced their arrival with a couple of head torches and the happy information that fire control is located only in their house. Not sure that was on any documentation I signed.
We found the guilty sensor glowing red but obviously broken because I am not writing in the smoke of the charred remains of our house. I tend not to worry about these things because my ‘Car Park of Worry‘ is already at capacity with Work parked across five prime spots and not looking to leave anytime soon. Squeezed in at the margins are Car (what’ll go bang next), Dog (acquired a limp), House (Really should start something) and external factors (is today the day the world ends)
Luckily Carol acts as a metaphorical overflow car park**, so I let her worry about it instead. I chucked the problem in my infinite bucket of non riding excuses which is why I’m Birmingham bound but bikeless, in what’ is looking to be a lovely day. Tomorrow I’ll ride unless something really serious happens.
That would include the electrical storm likely to be triggered by us turning on the terrifying and dangerous heating system. Maybe it wasn’t a false positive at all, it was just triggered a day early.
* Not because it is any way interesting, rather that everything else relating to the roaming tribes of IT traffic wardens is so mind crushingly dull.
** I have all the chat when it comes to complimenting my wife 😉