Archive for the ‘Blog’ Category

Business Two Way Radios – Tater Tots

Saturday, October 6th, 2012

Hi Friends,

My friends John and Charlie came to visit for the afternoon recently. John was in Miami shopping for a food truck, Charlie was along for the ride.

John retired a year or two ago and now he is looking for another adventure. He has seen food trucks featured on TV and it captured his imagination.

Food truck have been around a long time but more recently they have become more fashionable and far more gourmet. The old food trucks stood guard outside factories. They dispensed egg salad sandwiches and bags of corn chips. The new wave of food trucks feature gourmet treats that are unavailable any where else.

The new food trucks are stationed outside offices where discerning lunch goers choose between the redfish tacos or the ground lamb kabobs. It is not just convenience that brings the customers it is the unique offerings.

John told me about a food truck in Los Angeles that features adult tater tots. ‘Adult tater tots’ conjures up images that do not seem kin to the potato but these are just extraordinarily good tater tots. Probably too good to waste on immature taste buds.

John told me that the guy with the tater tot truck sells out everyday. At some point during the lunch rush this guy steps outside the truck and announces to a crowd of hungry office workers, “I’m sorry folks but we have sold out of tater tots.”

This is the best part, instead of being mad and declaring that they will never come back to this guy’s truck, they walk away determined to show up earlier tomorrow.

Since John told me this story I have been experimenting with tater tot recipes. I don’t want to sell them I just want to try them and Los Angeles is a long ride from Naples.

Here’s what I think is amazing: Someone took an ordinary thing and made it extraordinary. So extraordinary that people line up to buy. So extraordinary it inspires others to pursue their passion and dreams. That’s the terrific thing about entrepreneurship. You can take your passion and make your dreams come true.

Let us help you improve safety, efficiency and productivity at your business, school or government agency. Doing business with two way radio express is easy.

Best Wishes,

Manzie R Lawfer

Two Way Radios Are Multi-Purpose

Friday, October 5th, 2012

Hi Friends,

 

Clock radios are cool. First you have the clock. Then you have the radio. The clock tells you the precise time while you are enjoying some tunes. Even better the clock radio can be adjusted to wake you up every morning with music. It can even lull you to sleep with soft music and then turn itself off automatically.

I like devices that serve multiply purposes. The toaster oven not only toasts but it can bake and broil.  Mr. Coffee has a coffee pot with a built in clock. The clock is used mostly for automatic percolation at a specific time in the future (usually just before you get up in the morning). You can determine the time with this Mr. Coffee but it is not a true multi-purpose because the clock is mostly to support the auto brew feature.

Some years ago televisions, radios and record and tape players were bundled together. This didn’t work out as well as one would hope. Inevitably one of the component would stop working. Once it gets in your head that the tape player or radio isn’t working it drives you crazy. There was some relief because this was before TV repairmen went the way of the Dodo bird. There was a sense of satisfaction knowing help was on the way or simply that help could be summoned.

The Swiss Army Knife is the holy grail of multi-purposed devices. There is a mystique surrounding the Swiss Army Knife. There is a mystique surrounding the Swiss Army. Do the Swiss have an army? Is their only weaponry the knife?

Pontiac (gone now) had the Aztec. The Aztec was perhaps the ugliest vehicle ever built. Uniquely the Aztec could be converted into a camper, a station wagon, a chuck wagon, a one lane bowling alley, a circus tent and so on.

Two way radios can be used to open or close switches, activate a solenoids, open gates, send preprogrammed messages and many other tasks. Two way radios are a multi-purpose tool but two way radios are best used to improve safety, efficiency and productivity.

Let us help you find the best two way radios for your application. Doing business with 2 Way Radio Express is easy.

Best Wishes,

Manzie R Lawfer

Ants and Two Way Radios

Thursday, October 4th, 2012

Hi Friends,

Ants are very collaborative. The hierarchy of ants includes one queen, a bunch of patrol ants, even more foraging ants and more nest maintenance ants than any one would care to think about. The queen lives for 15 to 20 years of age while the other ants collectively known as worker ants live for just a year or two. The queen ant only mates once but continues to lay eggs for her whole life.

The most remarkable part is how much work ants get done. They build and maintain huge nests. The find, deliver and distribute there own food supply (unlike roaches that just stagger around looking for anything they can find to eat).

Ants owe their accomplishments to the collaborative nature of their activities. Each ant has a job but depends on the other ants for assistance. Did you know a group of ants can pick up and carry a toothpick around like a trophy? Ants are cool.

Ants remind me of a ‘best ball golf scramble.’  “The Scramble” is a great way for golfers of various abilities to participate in a tournament. Usually players are divided into foursomes. Each foursome competes against the other foursomes. It is a team competition.

In a scramble, each player tees off on each hole. The best of the tee shots is selected and all players in that foursome play their second shot from that spot. The best of the second shots is selected. Then all the players in that foursome play their third shot from that spot, and so on until the ball is holed.

Now here is the part that is fascinating: any foursome, comprised of 4 terrible golfers, might break the course record for low score. Let me say that again: 4 guys that when playing under conventional rules don’t expect to individually break 100 are able to score at par or below when they play as a team and choose best ball on each shot.

This is perhaps the greatest testimonial for team work since the ant. In basketball they say “good  teams beat great players every time.”

Using two way radios captures this same collaborative effort of accomplishment. Two way radios foster team work and working together. I bet your business could benefit from more collaboration. Let us help you find the best 2 way radios for your application. Doing business with 2 Way Radio Express is easy.

Best Wishes,

Manzie R Lawfer

Oktoberfest of 2 Way Radios

Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012

Hi Friends,

This is the time of year Oktoberfest images are featured on Google, Yahoo, Bing and the other search engines. Big mugs of beer are carried by a buxom blonde in a low cut blouse, pigtails and suspenders. There are a thousand people in the tent screaming German songs. Her sister is close behind with a tray full of snitzel, weiner bratapus and an equally low cut blouse. I love the Germans. I love mugs of beer. I love the sisters. German is not my native tongue. The Germans make good stuff. Vdubs forever!

In 2009 Henry Louis Gates Jr. was arrest by Cambridge policeman Sgt. James Crowley. Henry Louis Gates Jr. is an ancestry expert. He has a TV show on PBS and is a best selling author. Gates returned home after a trip to China were he was researching Yo-Yo Ma’s ancestry. Gates found his front door jammed shut and with the help of his driver tried to force it open. A neighbor reported their activity to the police as a potential burglary in progress. Sgt. Crowley was dispatched to the home and arrested Gates ultimately charging him with disorderly conduct.

A couple of days go by and President Obama gets wind of the story and proclaims Sgt. Crowley and his police buddies to be stupid and possibly racist. All the charges on Gates are dropped but there is a big outcry by the public regarding the President’s remarks.

President Obama apologizes and invites Gates and Crowley to the White House to have a beer and smooth things over. Vice President Joe Biden is even invited to the White House Lawn event that is being touted as the Beer Summit. “Beer Summit”  when compared to Oktoberfest could not be more misleading. No big mugs of beer, no buxom blonde, no low cut blouse, not even her sister showed up. As a matter of record only Vice President Biden even had a second beer. The Beer Summit should have been called the Beer Bust or the Beer Fraud.

We see two way radios advertised as 10 mile or 20 mile or even 30 mile radios. Balderdash! (Is balderdash a German word?) Hand held 2 way radios talk a mile or two. Any other claim is bogus. Don’t be fooled by claims of Beer Summit or 30 miles radios.

Let us help you find the best 2 way radios for your application. Doing business with 2 Way Radio Express is easy.

Best Wishes,

Manzie R Lawfer

Rainey Days and 2 Way Radios

Tuesday, October 2nd, 2012

Hi Friends,

Here in south Florida this morning it is thundering and lightening like crazy. When Ingemar Johhanson knocked out Floyd Patterson to become the heavy weight champion of the world in 1959 the swede attributed the win to his “toonder and lightning.” He of course was referring to his uber fast right hand power punch not the weather.

I grew up in a little Alabama town. Alabama has crazy thunder storms. My mother, God rest her soul, was scared to death of thunder and lightning. When there was a storm we had to move to the middle of the house away from the windows and we were under no circumstances allowed to answer the phone. My Mom suspected the phone line as a conduit for lightning. Some time later in her life she forgot all about being fearful of storms and remembered her behavior with curiosity. My mother’s sister had a great fear of cats. I don’t remember hearing about any other human with a fear of cats. But like my mother her sister lost her fear later in life.

Two way radios can be very useful in storms particularly if there is a loss of electrical power. Two way radios are battery powered so they continue to operate. If there is a prolonged loss of power an extra battery pack or alkaline batteries can be a solution. The UPS (uninterruptible power supply used with computers) can be a source for recharging radio batteries. If you are prepared with the right charger you can use the battery in your automobile to recharge 2 way radio batteries.

We sell the Midland Traveler Base Station radio that is great for use in a storm. It can be tuned to local weather channels, AM and FM stations and also works with hand held radios. The Midland Traveler Base Station has an onboard hand crank generator for recharging or it can be plug into a regular outlet for use when electrical power is not an issue.

Let us help you find the best 2 way radio equipment. Give us a call at 239-601-1969 today. Doing business with 2 Way Radio Express is easy.

Best Wishes,

Manzie R Lawfer

That’s Nothing – We Sell 2 Way Radios

Monday, October 1st, 2012

Hi Friends,

Some years ago I met my friend, Bernie. Bernie is self centered and insensitive to others. He is egotistical not an easy person to like. He doesn’t demonstrate the typical traits associated with friendship. On the other hand he is intellectual, articulate, hard working and can sometimes be very funny. Humor can make up for other deficiencies.

Bernie has this habit of interrupting or swaying a conversation he may not be interested in by saying, “That’s nothing.” For example you may be in a conversation regarding the upcoming presidential election and Bernie would interrupt with, “That’s nothing when we lived in Nashville the county commissioner was a dear friend of mine and I worked on his re-election campaign.”

Sometimes the interruption has a vague reference to the current subject matter and sometimes this is no correlation at all. It really is based on Bernie’s whim.

All of this sparks a game we play called “That’s Nothing.” This is a game that can be played at home, the office, in a car while traveling or anywhere. There is no board, no pieces, no rules and no score keeping. This is how the game goes: You are at a cocktail party and old Joe is blathering on about his new BMW. You lean in and say, “That’s nothing. Have you tried the turkey snaps I brought.”

At first people sort of ignore your comment thinking you may not have noticed Joe talking. But after a couple of, That’s Nothing’s, others will join in.

Mildred is talking about her recent root canal and I say, That’s Nothing; when I was in the Air Force my roommate was Liberace’s nephew. This is an obvious example of the no correlation That’s Nothing. Some one might parry with a correlating  That’s Nothing. My wife’s cousin is John Mellencamp. The correlation being both Liberace and John Mellencamp are entertainers.

I don’t see Bernie much anymore but I still play That’s Nothing at every opportunity. That’s Nothing we sell 2 way radios in all 50 states.

Let us help you get the best two way radio equipment for your application. Doing business with 2 Way Radio Express is easy.

Best Wishes,

Manzie R Lawfer

2 Way Radio Texting

Saturday, September 29th, 2012

Hi Friends,

I am a child of the 50’s and 60’s. I had a long childhood. Typing was a course offering at my high school. Mrs. Francis taught the touch method of typing. A passing grade was attained only by typing about 30 words a minute without looking at the typewriter keys (the keypad is the modern equivalent to typewriter keys).

The touch method was based on the notion that each of your ten fingers is responsible for their specific part of the alphabet. For example, the finger best known as the little pinky of your left hand is totally responsible for all the Q, A and Z’s used in words. As you may surmise Mrs. Francis was a stickler for procedure and was not the kind of professional interested in my loosey-goosey casual approach to typing.

Mrs. Francis would have no place in today’s totally reckless two thumb style of keypading to family and friends. I am sure she would even scoff at the term “texting.”

Two thumb texting is what most everyone in the modern world is doing. Texting is a terrific way to communicate. It lets people stay in conversation with several people simultaneously and continues a discussion throughout the day.

I was resistant at first but my always modern wife (Joy Ann) encouraged me sighting the efficiency of texting. I was less than successful at first. My fingers were too big. (I had never noticed the extraordinary size of my fingers before attempting to text.) Once I made a few adjustments I took too texting like a duck takes to water.

Texting is the wave of the future. But not so much with two way radios. While digital radio manufacturers tout “talk-text-track” the reality is either too expensive, too cumbersome or too limiting (100 – 200 characters). It really takes a compelling need to text in order to justify the additional expense. On the bright side the issue is more of a marketing limitation or decision rather than a technological limitation. I suspect a creative radio manufacturer will make an offering soon.

In the meantime let us help you find the best 2 way radio equipment for your application. Give us a call at 239-601-1969 today. Doing business with 2 Way Radio Express is easy.

Best Wishes,

Manzie R Lawfer

Waterproof Verses Water Resistant 2 Way Radios

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

Hi Friends,

Metaphorically electronic equipment and water have never mixed well. The problem resides in the conductive nature of water and the need for electronic components to be isolated. Because water conducts (or connects) all the components become connected instead of isolated and then, kaboom! Sparks begin to fly.

Military Specifications and Intrusion Protection Standards designate that a piece of equipment is able to endure and continue to operate under specific conditions. The standards and testing range from being able to endure high humidity to full submersion.

The tests also designate time. For example a radio that can withstand 1 meter submersion for 30 minutes has a different rating than a radio that can withstand submersion for longer periods or at a greater depth.

If your use of a 2 way radio is likely to involve complete submersion (even for a few seconds) then water resistant is not sufficient for your application. If your use of a 2 way radio is likely to be around spraying water or rainy conditions, water resistant should be adequate.

The cost for a commercial grade full powered radio that meet the criteria for full submersion is over $600. Six hundred dollars seems like a lot of money until you reach in the pond and pull out your perfectly operating 2 way radio. After one or two of these incidents the $600 seems well spent.

A less expensive alternative is using a water resistant radio equipped with a speaker mic. The speaker mic allows the user to leave the radio on his belt and operate just the speaker mic. By not taking the radio on and off his belt there is less danger of dropping the radio into water. The seal between the audio port and speaker mic plug is typically greater than the audio port cover alone.

Let us help you find the best 2 way radios for your application. Doing business with 2 Way Radio Express is easy.

Best Wishes,

Manzie R Lawfer

No Rollover Minutes on 2 Way Radios

Wednesday, September 26th, 2012

Hi Friends,

Do you remember S&H Green Stamps? Green stamps were given out at grocery stores,  gas stations and retailers all over the country. Green stamps could be redeemed for fabulous prizes. (Not really.) Business owners offered the stamps as an encouragement for folks to continue shopping with them. Double stamp days were big events at many stores.

The Green Stamp Catalog featured pictures of televisions and clock radios, bicycles, go carts, automobiles and all sorts of wonderful prizes. In reality I doubt if anyone ever saved enough stamps to get anything more than an electric razor or flashlight.

Green Stamps weren’t a scam but they built your belief on false hope. Towards the end of the Green Stamp era some churches, communities and neighbors were pooling their stamps in hopes of salvaging something. Even still Greens Stamps went the way of Raleigh Cigarette coupons.

The modern version of Green Stamps are roll over minutes offered by the cell phone companies.

Our office uses iPhones with service through AT&T. Jay takes care of our accounting  but he showed me the most recent bill with 16,000 roll over minutes. “Doesn’t 16,000 seem like a  lot of roll over minutes?” he asked me. “I wonder if we can use these minutes to pay for our current bill?”

Jay calls AT&T and learns we have accrued the roll over minutes because we don’t use all the minutes we are paying for. We paid for them. We just didn’t use them. Jay asks if we can apply the minutes towards the current or future bills. They reply, “No.”

Jay retorts, “We paid for them but we can’t use them? How about if we reduce our plan and then use them to make up any difference if we go over?”

They reply, “No. You can’t carry minutes forward to a new plan.”

Jay tells them, “It seems like they are your roll over minutes not our roll over minutes.”

Jay has always been clever with words but the folks at AT&T were unmoved.

Roll over minutes that you can’t use are worse than Green Stamps that you can’t redeem. Fortunately there is no limit to using 2 way radios. There are no minutes or roll over minutes. Let us help you find the best 2 way radios for your application. Doing business with 2 Way Radio Express is easy.

Best Wishes,

Manzie R Lawfer

2 Way Radios Prove Evolution

Monday, September 24th, 2012

Hi Friends,

First let me say that this is not about the Darwinian theory and man morphing from monkeys type of evolution. While that is an interested subject (and by the way I can prove conclusively that man is God’s creation) this is about the evolution of 2 way radios.

Nearly 10 years ago when I got involved in the two way radio business a full powered (4 watt UHF) radio cost around $500. This $500 radio had a 1100 milli amp nickel cadmium battery with a duty cycle of 8 to 10 hours. The life expectancy on the battery was maybe a year or two. These radios were durable but they were also heavy. Typically these radios weighed a hefty 14 to 16 ounces. They could withstand shock and vibration but were no where near as water resistance as today’s radios. Radio manufacturers did not start using the IP scale to declare water resistance until much more recently.

Most of the older radios used crystals to determine the radio’s transmit and receive frequencies. Crystals were permanent. If you want to change the frequency you had to change the crystals. Today, silicon chip technology let’s radio users control frequency and frequency changes with software and a cable between a computer and the radio.

Ten years ago most 2 way radios had 2 or 4 or maybe 8 channels. Today most commercial grade radios have 16 programmable channels and some specialized radios have 128 to 512 channels.

Today’s radios have advanced signaling that can open or close a switch, send a text message, provide emergency alert, announce a man down or a thousand other tasks.

Today’s radios are more water resistant, have more optional accessories, batteries with longer duty cycles and life expectancy, weigh less, have better warranties and cost about one third less.

Today’s radios have dramatically evolved over the last 10 years. Radio evolution is taking place constantly and consistently.

Let us help you find the best radio equipment. Doing business with 2 Way Radio Express is easy.

Best Wishes,

Manzie R Lawfer