Nest x Yale - Smart Lock: It's Really Really Smart

It happens every day. Especially when I’m running late, on my way out the door, even when I’m at the door. I can’t find my keys.

KeySearch

The struggle is real when I’m searching my bag for my keys and all I can find is 7 lipsticks, headphones, change and some gum. My phone on the other hand, is usually just there, in the other hand. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to wait outside my own door just to get in. I’ve been locked out waiting on my husband or landlord to save me from myself.

Or even scarier - realizing I never locked my door! It’s a completely normal problem, we all rush out the door - leaving later than we thought we were going to and when you’re rushing you tend to be more forgetful.

Que the NEST and Yale lock, aka the life saver. Nest heard I was making my home a smart home and sent over the smart lock to make sure I enter on the right foot.

At a glance

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This smart lock was designed by Nest and Yale. The lock replaces your existing deadbolt and uses 4 standard double a batteries. It’s  tamper-proof, key-free deadbolt that you control from your Nest app. All I need is my phone and I can unlock and lock my door from anywhere.

What I love about this - is even if I forget my phone, I can still use the touchscreen outside to use my pin and get in. So it basically has a built in backup plan. Let’ be honest - I forget my keys way more than my phone so I’m pretty set on that front.

The set up is easier than you think. If you take out the tech portion, it’s just another deadbolt to screw on. And then after that it’s setting up the tech side - connecting it to your phone, the nest connect, any other nest products and setting up your pin. After that - you’re nested and secure.

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What appeals to me are all the ways it’s going to make my life just that much easier. With my busy lifestyle, anything that can make me worry less, take some time off my hands and simplify my life is definitely what I want.  

So the fact that I can lock and unlock your door anywhere (with internet access) is a big win for me. No need to make an extra key for your brother visiting from New York or your cleaning lady. The Nest x Yale Lock lets you create personalized passcodes for people you trust, and choose when they can get in. Instead of giving a key to them, I can just give a code to enter and it’s set! Not only that, but I’ll be notified when someone lets themself in and heads out.

What ifs?

I know, Jessica, what if my wifi goes down? Do I just live outside my door now? No, the touch screen outside is available to pin in your code and you’re in!

Okay, but Jessica, what if all my batteries die? Phone dead? Use the keypad! Lock dead? One, it tells you when it’s low - so you can change the batteries ahead of time. But let’s say you kept forgetting - you can  hold a 9 Volt battery terminal at the bottom of your lock to provide temporary power and in case of an emergency. Then you can enter your passcode and unlock the door.

I’m a techie girl in a techie world, and having a smart lock is just another step to making my home the most efficient. My phone is slowly becoming a one stop shop to all my basic needs.

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Final Thoughts

Pros: The pro’s are definitely all there and seemingly limitless - from airheaded mornings to preventing Airbnb disasters, this is the kind of gadget that ensures your safety and peace of mind.

Cons: If you’re not someone who installs a door lock or your setups your wifi network - this installation is a little of both so it might be more difficult for some.

Bottom Line: This $279 smart lock is worth the heavier price tag, the pro’s definitely outweigh the cons. The smart lock secures your Nest products when you're away, disarms your system when you come home and gives you piece of mind. If you own multiple nest delivers it’s easy integration. I’m not gifting anymore clutter into anyones life, not even a small key.

This blog was in partnership with Nest

 

Salary Talk: Negotiating and Knowing Your Worth

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It's #EqualPayDay and tech companies need to take note. On average, women make less than 72 cents for every dollar in tech/engineering. Tech has fallen far behind, even though it’s supposed to be leading the way in progress. 

Let's start at the beginning. It takes confidence to look someone in the eye and ask for more money. But first you need to have the confidence? One of my absolute favorite ways to instill confidence with anyone I work with is mentorship. Personally, I never had a mentor, and unfortunately thats not uncommon. Not only do we get paid 20% but we are also 24% less likely to receive mentorship or advice from our bosses. While you don't need a mentor to make it, it significantly increases your chances in your career to rise the ranks. The more you improve, the more confident you are and having a boss on your side will make that negotiation a lot easier. (via)
 

Did you know, that as a woman you are more likely to take the lower salary just to avoid negotiating? Negotiating is something both men and women have an aversion to, but men are more likely to negotiate harder. Thus, employers give them a higher starting salary to avoid the negotiation - knowing that women are more averse to negotiating they are able to start us at a lower salary and we'll accept it. How do we change this? 

Change the narrative. 

Often times, we either feel pushy or are called pushy and greedy for negotiating higher. Instead of making the conversation about just one part of your package - talk about the whole package. Include salary, equity, and insurance all as one conversation. More than likely you and the employer will have different wants from both ends - making it about the bigger picture turns the conversation from a battle to a collaboration. It will ease both you and your employer and you'll be able to fight for what you're worth! (via)

Prepare and negotiate your worth.

Just the anxiety induced by knowing you have to negotiate your salary can cause you to not want to think about it. But you need to prepare! Know why you deserve more and how to explain that to your future employer. If it's a new job or trying to ask for a raise - think about what you're doing, how much time it takes, and what is your time worth? Research jobs similar to you and see what the average is, don't settle for that, but take that as a starting number. Are you making at least the average? If you have a superior, you're comfortable with - chat with them and get feedback on just what you need to know or say. It all seems scary at first, but I promise when you come in prepared - you're guaranteeing yourself success.

I’m proud to partner with Luna bar to empower women to take #equalpay into their own hands. At TechSesh we’re female-founded, female-run, and female-funded so this is an issue that is really important to me. LUNA Bar will be discounting their bars by 20% and donating 20% to AAUWNational to raise awareness of the gender wage gap women experience in the work place. For more tips on negotiating (always ask for more) the salary you’re worth, go here.

This blog was a partnership with Luna bar.

Polaroid Pop Review

Oh Snap, the Polaroid is back! But this time around, you don’t even need to sha-sha-shake it like a polaroid picture. 

The iconic brand (yes long before there was Instagram, there was Polaroid) introduced an instant digital camera for the perfect blend of nostalgia & modern design. Meet the Polaroid Pop.

FEATURES

You can capture—and print—all your favorite moments in the signature 3.5×4.25” Polaroid border format. You can even sync the camera with your phone, transforming it into an instant photo printer that you can use on the go. 

The digital camera lets users shoot and instantly print full-color photos as 3.5x4.25" Polaroid border prints, or capture 1080p full HD video recording capability or GIFs. The camera can also connect to a mobile device using Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, allowing users to further share their photos with family and friends. 

By the way, it doesn’t use ink, all the color is in the picture, it’s a ZINK Zero Ink printer to create a stylish, versatile photography tool. I like how it’s water resistant and smudge proof.

VIDEO REVIEW

 

FIRST IMPRESSIONS

Our first impression of the Polaroid POP was a positive one. The camera is using new tech to make its most popular product of all time-- so you’re getting the best of both worlds. Ok I’m feeling a little nostalgic. The camera’s small size combined with the 20 megapixel sensor and dual LED flash is a reason to be excited. I’m Geeking out 24/7. The build quality of the camera feels light and has a square-shaped plastic body.

You can make the adjustments in the menu to accommodate the low light situation. But are you taking picture or using video. either way that adjustment can be done. You can see this in the manual. 

The camera supports SD card formats up to 128 GB, which is a nice touch to go along with the HD video. 

The output from the Pop is cleaner and more like a modern day print, except that it is semi-instant and emerges from the top of the camera.

FINAL THOUGHTS

The most impressive feature of the Polaroid POP was its video recording capability. The 1080p quality looked great in comparison to the rest of the features.They made it small enough to take anywhere with you and yet the screen is big enough for easy navigation. The paper is a bit pricey, but that is expected. 

The printing takes about a minute and the prints are of expected quality. I like that it is something physical versus just digital. The paper is equal in weight to the at-home digital prints. I previously had the Fuji Instax, which I wanted to like but hated the size of the camera. it was too bulky. This is slightly bigger, but the pictures that come out at MUCH LARGER, so that makes up for it.This is a real fun instant camera. Greatly recommend for parties and instant memories on vacation.