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Ask Slashdot: Starting From Scratch After a Burglary? 770

New submitter sc30317 writes "My house got robbed on Friday, and all of our electronics got stolen. Everything. Now, I have to go out and buy all new electronics with the insurance money. We had five TVs (don't ask), three laptops, a Bose Sound dock with iPod, a digital camera, and a desktop stolen. It's looking like I am going to get around $10K from the insurance company to replace everything. What would you do if you had to replace ALL of your technology in your house at once? I'm thinking: replace TVs; nice Desktop; new speakers; and new, cool stuff I don't know about (suggestions welcome). I already added a DVR security system, so hopefully the new things won't get burgled! Looking for suggestions to utilize my money in order to get the best stuff. Also, no Windows computers allowed in my house."
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Ask Slashdot: Starting From Scratch After a Burglary?

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  • First purchase (Score:5, Insightful)

    by PPH ( 736903 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @12:35PM (#42968253)

    Buy a mean dog.

  • Traps (Score:2, Insightful)

    by cod3r_ ( 2031620 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @12:36PM (#42968271)
    Guns, Traps, security system that calls the police, pit bulls, and a Chihuahua.. 'murica
  • save your money.. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by kcmastrpc ( 2818817 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @12:37PM (#42968291)
    buy something other than Bose
  • by Jeng ( 926980 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @12:38PM (#42968311)

    If they have your desktop then they likely have all of your personal information. I would be rather worried about that portion of the theft and would be curious how one would work to make sure that the information they stole would be useless.

  • by concealment ( 2447304 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @12:39PM (#42968315) Homepage Journal

    Buy nothing. Wait for a need; then research what fits it best.

    You've been given an opportunity in disguise here.

    Do you really want all that stuff that consumes time? Only one way to tell: wait for yourself to need it, then buy it as you determine those needs based on what you actually use.

  • Re:First purchase (Score:5, Insightful)

    by silas_moeckel ( 234313 ) <silas&dsminc-corp,com> on Thursday February 21, 2013 @12:39PM (#42968317) Homepage

    Na get a nice lovable dog.and protection training an aggressive dog is useless / dangerous. That said a nice female defending her home will ripe the face off anybody not supposed to be there.while your newborn can grab yank and otherwise harass her and she will just look at you for help.

  • Wait (Score:5, Insightful)

    by MeBadMagic ( 619592 ) <mtpenguin AT gmail DOT com> on Thursday February 21, 2013 @12:41PM (#42968381)

    Don't replace anything right away. Wait until you know what you miss the most. When you miss 'it' the most, note why. Once you have the what and why, start shopping for the best fit, new or old.


  • by Isarian ( 929683 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @12:43PM (#42968413)

    So you can afford, maybe two new decent Macs?

  • They'll Be Back (Score:5, Insightful)

    by brainboyz ( 114458 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @12:50PM (#42968527) Homepage

    Whatever you decide on, don't buy everything all at once. They'll be casing your place again in a few days because they know you'll be replacing everything with nice NEW stuff.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 21, 2013 @12:53PM (#42968583)

    Hold off because the burglar knows exactly where a bunch of new tech is going to be showing up in the next couple of weeks.

  • by RedShoeRider ( 658314 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @12:57PM (#42968645)
    I second that!

    We had the remarkably unpleasant experience of having a house fire two years ago. While the structure itself was alright, just about everything in the house was destroyed due to the smoke and heat, including almost all of our electronics. 3 desktops, 2 laptops, an old Proliant server, 2 UPS's, Printer, 2 TV's, fax machine, scanner, DVD players, 3 get the idea. When we moved back in, electronics wise, we bought only what we missed. The 3 desktops were replaced with one that was faster (and cheaper) than the ones it replaced, the printer by a print/fax/scan combo unit, the 2 TV's were consolidated to one, blah, blah.

    Point being, do wait until you see what you need. You'll likely end up with a smaller, but more useful, pile of equipment in the end.
  • Re:Traps (Score:1, Insightful)

    by drinkypoo ( 153816 ) <> on Thursday February 21, 2013 @01:02PM (#42968737) Homepage Journal

    Traps are illegal. It is a typical travesty that a nonlethal trap is illegal, but shooting a home invader in the face is legal. Suffice to say, be ready to shoot them in the face.

    As long as we embrace a culture that continues to increase disparity of wealth, this is going to happen more and more, period the end close the fucking book. It's only going to get worse so long as we do not seek meaningful solutions.

  • Re:Dictionary (Score:4, Insightful)

    by hedwards ( 940851 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @01:04PM (#42968755)

    To be fair, I'm American and I use the word burgled as buglarized is such a hideous word. I have no idea how long it's going to take to convert the rest of the country though.

  • by Sique ( 173459 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @01:04PM (#42968759) Homepage
    Because pitchforks are tools, mainly made to shovel manure. They are only clumsy, makeshift weapons. Guns are built to propel projectiles at high velocity against a target, which makes them quite clumsy, makeshift tools for anything else.
  • Keep it simple? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by jonr ( 1130 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @01:05PM (#42968777) Homepage Journal

    Buy less junk to steal. Spend your money on 'experiences'. Travel, art, fun, whatever...

  • Re:Traps (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Sique ( 173459 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @01:06PM (#42968791) Homepage
    And this helps against a burglary when he's away exactly how? (Except that this gets more guns in the hands of criminals in the case of a burglary.)
  • Re:They'll Be Back (Score:5, Insightful)

    by rjune ( 123157 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @01:14PM (#42968945)

    brainboyz is right - take your time. You can use the time to research the stuff and decide if you really need to replace all 5 TV's. Also, if you throw out the boxes, cut them up and don't advertise the fact that you bought a big new 58" TV. You don't say how they got in, but after my house was broken into (the burglars destroyed the door) my insurance company paid for a new door. As part of the project, I got a security screen door. This will not a determined burglar, but it will slow them down enough so that they will look for an easier place to hit.

  • by h4rr4r ( 612664 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @01:19PM (#42969027)

    Instead of all moving into fortresses maybe we should work to fix our society. The US seems to quickly be turning into a third world hell hole. Only in those do you need to live in a gated community to avoid robbery.

  • Re:Traps (Score:3, Insightful)

    by drinkypoo ( 153816 ) <> on Thursday February 21, 2013 @01:21PM (#42969049) Homepage Journal

    Really just commenting to undo mod. I feel that parts of the second half of your comment are flamebait, while the first half is spot on.

    Please explain which parts are flamebait? I do not propose a solution, only state a fact. We know that poor people commit more crimes, some to survive and some to make themselves feel better about themselves (empowered.) That's not an indictment of poor people, it's an indictment of a system that creates poor people.

    Now, if I declared that I had a solution and that it was the only solution, that would be flamebait. It would also almost certainly be bullshit.

  • by jittles ( 1613415 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @01:30PM (#42969201)

    Because pitchforks are tools, mainly made to shovel manure. They are only clumsy, makeshift weapons. Guns are built to propel projectiles at high velocity against a target, which makes them quite clumsy, makeshift tools for anything else.

    A gun is a tool, as well. It may be a tool used to do things that you do not approve of, but that does not make it any less a tool than a pitchfork.

  • by John Hasler ( 414242 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @01:30PM (#42969203) Homepage

    You're free! Don't put your chains back on!

  • Re:Craigslist (Score:4, Insightful)

    by gl4ss ( 559668 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @01:39PM (#42969341) Homepage Journal

    why the fuck you would like a projector in 50-60" size? only get a projector if you really need 100"+..
    cellular hotspots suck ass if you compare them to decent wired internet - and if you have data and smartphone you already have one.

  • Re:First purchase (Score:2, Insightful)

    by LVSlushdat ( 854194 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @01:45PM (#42969433)

    If you happen to be home when the criminal breaks in, you don't want to "mess up" the thief.. you want him taking a permanent dirtnap... If you just "mess him up", one of several things will happen.. One: when he gets out of the hospital, he will come back VERY angry and likely bring friends/guns along with him.. Not good.. Two: While he's in the hospital, an ambulance chaser pays him a visit and puts dollar-signs in the crooks eyes.. Ergo, you, the homeowner find yourself a victim of the current "justice" system. Double-plus-NOT-good.. Sure, if you kill him, any family he has can try to get you into the "justice" system on a manslaugther charge, but *most* civilized states (Texas, I'm looking at you..) have laws based on the "Castle" doctrine and that lawsuit won't go anywhere.. Of course, if you happen to live in one of the bat-s**t insane liberal states (California? now I'm looking at YOU..), you probably better not kill him or even have a home-defense firearm or you're in deep kimchi....

  • Re:First purchase (Score:5, Insightful)

    by FrankSchwab ( 675585 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @01:46PM (#42969451) Journal

    A gun isn't necessarily the best approach for home protection for someone who isn't comfortable with the moral and legal ramifications of the decision to actually use it.

    A can of Bear Spray (a spray-paint sized can of strong pepper spray) will disable just about anyone short of a meth-crazed psycho (and almost all burglars simply aren't meth-crazed psychos). For someone who might hesitate using a gun, or keeps the gun safely locked up (and hence unavailable) at home, this is probably the superior solution - there's generally no need to hesitate on it's use, you can leave it unlocked, and if you are faced with a meth-crazed psycho you're probably not going to get your gun unlocked, loaded, and fire an effective shot in time anyway. If your kids get their hands on it, the worst thing that'll happen is a very unpleasant experience; no ones gonna blow anyones head off.

  • "Aluminium" (Score:4, Insightful)

    by naroom ( 1560139 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @01:51PM (#42969527)
    That is all.
  • by kermidge ( 2221646 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @01:58PM (#42969559) Journal

    "Burglars generally show up when the house is empty...."

    If you're home, it's robbery.

  • Re:First purchase (Score:0, Insightful)

    by Jackie_Chan_Fan ( 730745 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @02:08PM (#42969693)

    If he had that, some piece of shit criminal would now be running around with his ar-15 illegally.

  • Whatever you do... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by folderol ( 1965326 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @02:10PM (#42969733) Homepage
    Absolutely do not buy anything of real value for at least 2 months. Burglars frequently try to double-dip and snatch all your nice new stuff about a month after their first visit.

    When you do buy new stuff don't put the empty boxes out - the bar-stewards will be waiting to see those too :(
  • Re:First purchase (Score:4, Insightful)

    by h4rr4r ( 612664 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @02:10PM (#42969741)

    Actually that would be how kids fight. Adults generally limit themselves. Probably because of the whole civilized and laws thing.

  • by MozeeToby ( 1163751 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @02:29PM (#42969979)

    Crime is as low as it's been in 30 years, violent crime even more so. This image that our society is crumbing is one that is produced by the media and backed up by the human instinct to remember 'the good old days'.

  • Re:First purchase (Score:5, Insightful)

    by wed128 ( 722152 ) <.woodrowdouglass. .at.> on Thursday February 21, 2013 @02:32PM (#42970053)

    You're never going to talk a hardened criminal or a desperate junkie out of hurting you to get whatever they want. At some point, it's you or them.

    Civilized people must be prepared to abandon their civility when the time comes.

  • Re:First purchase (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Runaway1956 ( 1322357 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @02:36PM (#42970097) Homepage Journal

    Barbarian? That is quite telling. You can't tell the difference between a person defending his home, and the barbarian who broke into his home. No wonder our "justice system" is so messed up.

    Shoot the thief dead, dead, dead, and hope that he hasn't bred yet!

  • Re:First purchase (Score:5, Insightful)

    by barc0001 ( 173002 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @02:52PM (#42970317)

    "That means you'd get 2 shots. Hope you don't miss or your ass is dead."

    This isn't nearly as stupid advice as you'd think. Any competent person only needs 1 shot with a 20 gauge shotgun loaded with the appropriate ammo, especially inside a house or other structure. On top of that, a wound from a single shot of a weapon like that is far worse than a couple of rounds from an AR-15. I shoot you in the hip twice with an AR-15, you're in a lot of pain and probably down for the count. I shoot you once with a 20 gauge at less than 10 yards in the hip, you're going to need reconstructive surgery assuming you don't bleed to death on the spot. Plus, I guess you've never fired a shotgun indoors. They are LOUD. Like bowel-voidingly loud. If there are multiple burglars I really don't think they'll be sticking around to see how many rounds you've got after the first shot deafens everyone and puts one of their number on the floor with a fist sized hole in them.

  • Re:First purchase (Score:4, Insightful)

    by SimplyGeek ( 1969734 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @03:07PM (#42970559)
    People miss under the stress of a life or death situation. The LAPD fired 120 rounds into that truck recently and missed all of them. Remember the Empire State building? They fired plenty of rounds and all they hit were bystanders. Same goes for most police shootings. People miss when shooting under stress. Why would you bet your life on not making a common mistake? It's negligent.
  • Re:First purchase (Score:5, Insightful)

    by barc0001 ( 173002 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @03:59PM (#42971239)

    Even more reason for a *double* barreled shotgun. Your fancy AR-15 with the 30 round clip isn't going to do much if the first round in the chamber misfires and jams, but the chances that both barrels of a shotgun will not work is pretty tiny.

  • Re:First purchase (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Capt.DrumkenBum ( 1173011 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @04:36PM (#42971681)
    Wow! Paranoid much?
    I am about as anti-government as anyone. But even I will admit a few rules are a good idea. Rules about gun storage, and some sort of permit requirement seems only logical to me.

    Watch this get modded all over the map. :)
  • Re:First purchase (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Coolhand2120 ( 1001761 ) on Thursday February 21, 2013 @07:08PM (#42973651)

    Any competent person only needs 1 shot with a 20 gauge shotgun...

    Competent? One shot? People miss, and miss a lot, for a lot of different reasons. Sometimes it's because they are not competent. Sometimes it's just because they are nervous and miss. Sometimes the bad guy is moving. Sometimes there is more than one bad guy. Sometimes the bad guy is shooting back and they have to return fire from cover. The number of reasons that more than one shot might be needed is very high.

    On top of that, a wound from a single shot of a weapon like that is far worse than a couple of rounds from an AR-15.

    Well, that's a very subjective statement. A single shot from a 20 gauge shot gun to the pinky finger is far less critical than an 5.56 between the eyes or through the heart. A shotgun, especially a lower powered one like a 20 gauge, is far less likely to kill someone than an AR-15 when shot from the same distance to the same area. Add any kind of ballistic armor and now the 20 gauge is almost useless. Not that bad guys rock bullet proof vests a lot. The point is, an AR-15 is actually a lot more deadly than a 20 gauge single shot shot gun. And if you're worried about shooting through the walls with an AR-15 you can always use hollow point bullets.

    The biggest problem with Joe's plan of shooting warning shots, and his problems are numerous, is that if you have a double barrel shot gun and you shoot two shots into the air you're left with an unloaded weapon. If the bad guy has a weapon you're now in a shootout with an unloaded gun. Not only will the bad guy now be shooting to kill, but you'll have to reload, While being shot at.

    Using a shotgun is a double edge sword. The good part is that is doesn't shoot through walls so you're not going to hit anyone in other rooms. But that's also a bad part, if the bad guy has a gun and is shooting at you through the wall, you can't return fire with a shotgun. Shotguns are easy to aim, but they lack the ability to choose what you're shooting at. If someone you don't want to hit is near someone you do want to hit, you're kinda out of luck. A bad thing about a shotgun is that it's quite long, and turning around inside a narrow hallway can be a pain, but the same can be said for an AR-15.

    Double barrel and single shot shotguns lack a pump, so there's no way to "warn" the bad guy that you might be sending a cloud of buckshot at him. As mentioned before, double barrel shotguns only have two shots, which is really not enough. If you miss twice, for whatever reason you're in trouble. Using the pump on a pump shotgun is probably enough to scare off even armed bad guys, after all, they want to live just as much as the next guy. However, when you're actually shooting at an armed bad guy, that's a whole other story, you leave the bad guy no choice but to return fire.

    Why the fuck does Joe's wife need a god damn shotgun, or any gun? They live at the US Naval Observatory and have a full time contingent of heavily armed marines and secret service agents! All of which are armed with AR-15s, 9mm, G36's, Hand grenades etc.. If Joe's and his wife still have a need for guns, than certainly it can be argued that those of us without heavily armed guards need weapons.

    And of course the grand overriding argument is that we don't maintain weapons to fend off crooks, that's just a useful benefit. The real reason we have gobs of high powered rifles with large magazine capacities is so we can stand a chance if ever a need rises to water the tree of liberty. Once you give up a freedom for "public safety" or any other reason, it's almost impossible to get it back. We do not need to overthrow the government we have today, but we are always only one generation from a complete Soviet style tyranny. I've heard the argument "what's an AR-15 going to do to a tank or an F-22". Well, the tank crew doesn't live in the tank, and the

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