Deborah L. O'Mara

Freelance Writer

Deborah O'Mara is the president of DLO Communications in Park Ridge, Ill., specializing in low-voltage. She also is the former editor of Security + Life Safety Systems. She can be reached at 847.384.1916 or

Articles by Deborah L. O'Mara

March 2003
Technology convergence means practical solutions A fiber optic system guards Naval operations on the Atlantic coastline. A corporate executive shoots video and transmits the live images instantly, across the country. A camera scans an image, records the time, and permits the user access to another layer of security. That is just a sample of emerging low-voltage applications. READ MORE
March 2003
Sharlen Electric Company in Chicago didn’t balk at the scope of the Chicago Public Schools (CPS) project; it set course for a superior integrated-systems installation. The old adage, “Too many cooks spoil the broth,” just wasn’t true when it came to a massive electrical overhaul at the Jones College Preparatory High School in Chicago. READ MORE
February 2003
Access control once deployed keys and keypads with codes. All that changed when the magnetic-stripe card hit the streets and it’s been up and away ever since. Now, access control is making the move to proximity, often referred to as hands-free, but is more appropriately called touchless access control. The traditional magnetic-stripe card has changed. READ MORE
January 2003
In no other market has technology advanced as quickly as in digital video and closed circuit television video (CCTV) surveillance. Digital signal processing is state-of-the-art and beyond, and cameras are nearly end-to-end digital. Recording is most often tied to computer technology, with storage limited only by hard-drive space, which continues to increase. READ MORE
November 2002
Effective physical security protection starts on the outside and perimeter of a facility and is part of an integrated solution. Here, gates and gate-control operators are definitely a deterrent and can be used to limit who and what comes and goes into the protected premises. Gates come in a variety of styles and are used in a host of applications. READ MORE
October 2002
In access control, the innovation never stops. In the cards themselves and the readers, technology has stepped up to provide the highest levels of security ever. From standalone, self-contained systems for a single door to large, networked platforms, access control can meet the needs of the smaller customer and the large corporate account as well. READ MORE
September 2002
These days, if you’re doing only wiring and cabling, you’re probably in the minority. Many electrical contractors wisely continue to expand their customer base, capitalizing on a variety of market upswings in low-voltage systems and services. According to ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR magazine’s 2002 Profile of the Electrical Contractor, voice/data/video (VDV) is clearly a bright spot. READ MORE
August 2002
We’ve come to know it and love it: the wonderful world of wireless. Otherwise known as radio frequency transmission, wireless has gone mainstream, with hands-free and remote capabilities a way of life. If you think electrical contracting has nothing to do with wireless, you’re wrong. READ MORE
August 2002
Every electrical contractor involved in the installation and maintenance of life safety systems knows that what really drives the fire market is local, state and federal building codes and the Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ). That’s not necessarily a bad thing. Much of the research and development for technologies often comes as a result of new requirements or code changes. READ MORE