Saturday, August 9, 2014

A Stranger Sarching For A Lost iPhone

Okay - I just had an amusing encounter with a stranger.  I was sitting at home, having just finished dinner and watching an episode of "Ghost Adventures", an amusing distraction, when there was a knock on the door.  I opened the door and there was a gentleman, a little worked up, with his laptop in hand.  He was looking for a lost iPhone and he has one of those iPhone locators which was telling him that the phone was at this address (an apartment building) and the little locator dot was showing it right outside my spare bedroom window.

His attitude was half-deferential and half-confrontational.  You could tell he was convinced he was right on top of the iPhone.  It took me several minutes to calm him down, assuring him I had two of my own and didn't have his. After several times, I invited him in to look around if he wanted.*  He initially declined but, once he calmed down a bit he came in, we hooked him up to my wireless network guest account and he pulled up the application.  The application had pinged on the cell phone at about 11:50 am while the phone was being charged and then the phone had been turned off.

He had already spoken to my downstairs neighbor (Tom) and Tom had told him he did not have the phone (and Tom is a believable guy, a solid family working man and a pleasant neighbor). After a conversation for about thirty minutes, I gave the guy my phone number and email and told him that, if the system calls it up again and it shows near my location, to give me a call and I'll go out and walk around and see if I can hear it while it pings or rings.

From what I have read the accuracy of those pins depends on whether it is connected to the cell phone network (in which case it uses the signal strength from the cell tower) or via a hot spot, in which case it can find it with a great degree of accuracy.  It was curious to me that the pin actually showed it outside of the apartment (on what is, basically, simple grass), which is what prompted me to go online and read up on the accuracy of it. I tried it on my phone and, since it is connected via wireless network, my phone is pinpointed with a high degree of accuracy.

I am now hugely curious as to whether or not I hear from the guy again.  In the little quad of apartments on this end of the building, the guy has yet to talk to my neighbors across the street, who currently are not home.  He left a note on their door.  They also seem to be good people, so if they found it, I am sure they will call him.  Like I said, I am now hugely curious if I will hear from the guy again.

*I am a good judge of character and the guy "rang true", so I didn't hesitate to invite him in. But, unknown to him, I also had this pen in my hand.

This little toy is a Smith & Wesson self-defense pen.  It is a perfectly functioning pen, made from anodized aluminum. It can be used as a Kubotan type weapon (which I am trained to use, as an ex-cop).  Though small, the Kubotan type weapons are highly effective for close in fighting. With a little bit of muscle and speed, it will inflict a considerable amount of pain.  In the hands of a trained user, it can send a powerful man into full retreat or too his keys in pain.  It is a common accessory in my pocket when I am out and about.

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