January 31, 2013 -- Valarm ( http://www.valarm.net ) is the Versatile Asset Locator And Remote Monitor. Valarm was born when Lorenzo (Founder, CEO) woke up one morning to discover his precious, customized motorcycle had been stolen by professional thieves. Originally Valarm was conceived as an affordable and accessible theft-prevention and vehicle tracking device which Lorenzo would use himself to protect his replacement bike. Apparently thieves frequently check back after successfully stealing one vehicle: they know the owner has insurance and will eventually get a new one! Although it is still an excellent theft tracking solution, today Valarm has evolved into a general purpose platform for remote environmental monitoring, mobile data acquisition, and asset/vehicle tracking.
Valarm is an Android mobile app and integrated suite of web-based tools that will track almost anything via GPS, and remotely monitor almost any environment via built-in and external sensors. Commercial fleet managers use Valarm as a vehicle or container-tracking device with additional sensor information. Scientists use it as a remote environmental monitor or mobile data acquisition platform. Consumers can use Valarm to track down their lost or stolen property, by configuring it as a motion-sensing or sound-sensing, GPS-enabled, anti-theft alarm and tracking device, or a powerful property monitor. Hobbyists can also use Valarm to monitor homes, gardens, aquariums, aquaponics or hydroponics.
Valarm also integrates with externally connected sensor hardware (via USB or Bluetooth) to record environmental and/or mechanical factors including, but not limited to, temperature, lumens, voltage, barometric pressure, humidity, presence of volatile organic compounds or other gases, and the status of vehicle OBDII (or OBD2: on-board diagnostics) including engine RPMs, throttle position, coolant temperature, and more. The Valarm-equipped Android device can immediately distribute configurable alerts via SMS/text, email, and the web.
Android and the flood of powerful, inexpensive Android devices create an opportunity for extremely useful, connected remote monitoring applications. Whether running on phones or tablets, a small, mobile, energy-efficient, and highly compute-capable platform such as Android is a very compelling platform for mobile data acquisition and remote environmental monitoring. Connected via cellular or WiFi, Valarm-equipped Android tablets and phones easily create the powerful “sensor-web” long dreamed-of by academia and research organizations, manufacturing, food & chemical storage, farms, and even hobbyists.
In other words, you can configure Valarm to send a text, email, or post to your account on http://tools.valarm.net, when any sensor is triggered by your settings, for example:
- Someone runs off with your camera bag/guitar/motorcycle
- Your A/C breaks down and your servers are overheating
- The lights go out on your reef aquarium or hydroponics rig
- Your vehicle travels too far, too fast, or too close to a forbidden area (GPS geofence), or the accelerator is “floored” or the engine raced ( OBD2 integration)
- Your vacation home is freezing and the pipes are about to burst
- The humidity in your greenhouse drops and your orchids are drying up
- Your refrigerator breaks and your beer gets warm
- Many, many more applications are possible!