Regarding the follow up question after the webinar on July 30, 2015 by Jeff Zwirn on the residential smoke detector requirements [circulated August 6, 2015] . "If the electrician meets the code requirement with 110v electrical smokes does the alarm installer still have to meet the code as well or can we install a couple of smokes as supplemental coverage. The smoke detectors installed by the alarm company would be monitored but not the electrical smokes."
    Obviously many industry folks who transition from "installer" to "company owner" are simply not doing their "due diligence" by learning what they need to know or looking for shortcuts.  They need to know how to meet the demands of the AHJ  expectations and requirements, and to some extent, the potential customer end user.  We see this every time a question is asked.  Really simple common issues are asked and this is a perfect example. 
    All this guy would need to do is "READ THE PAPERWORK THAT'S PROVIDED BY THE MANUFACTURER," that comes, in this case, the type of smoke detector you can buy at your local distributor or HD or Lowes.  And I'm not talking about serious F.A. systems, which I hope if this guy wants to do he'd best consider a whole lot of insurance to "CYAssets."
    Zwirn could have said, "Read the instructions!"  This is not ROCKET SCIENCE.  There is so much availability to learning what is needed to know whether its CCTV, Access Control, and specifically Fire.  Zwirn could have said, place the connected smokes inline and next to each bedroom within the requirement stated on the pamphlet.
    I don't know if this guy (company) is a licensed electrician, or has ever done this type of work, but if he has doubt's then he should hire someone who can do this without causing a problem down the road.
    C'mon Zwirn, cut some of the folks a break and get off your pedestal.  I apologize first hand if you're really a good guy and just seem to come across like a hardass and get tired of seeing these type of letters….really, Zwirn, I have been there, done that.
    I think it was Dirty Harry who said "a man needs to know his limitations".  It's great to have aspirations and dreams, but there really is no substitute for preparation and hard work.  Most of us aren't lucky enough to have what many think the best business job and title: "beneficiary".  
    Years ago when I was just starting out as a lawyer a successful alarm company owner, Sam Mevorah of Acme Burglar and Fire alarms, gave me a tour of his building and told me he encouraged all of his employees, from maintenance up, to be the best they could be.  It was good advice, especially from Sam, who along with his brother Marty, took over their Dad's alarm business.  But they certainly were not ill prepared to run their business and when they sold it was a very successful business.
    The alarm business is not for those who don't want to be life safety experts; for those who understand the extraordinary consequences of not delivering the services they purport to sell.  If you can't figure out how to install a working fire alarm system in a residence then don't do it.  If total home automation is beyond your expertise, then don't offer it.  If you have the capital to launch a nationwide DIY program, sign up monitoring and farm it out to a qualified central station, then learn all that you need to learn to succeed in that operation.  Make sure you sell equipment that works and have a central station that responds.
    There are a bunch of really well qualified alarm experts out there, and I am not talking about PEs or other professional experts who have little field experience.  Jeff Zwirn is in the alarm business and he installs alarms.  He prepared himself for that livelihood and became so expert in installation and troubleshooting that he became a professional expert. He is called in when there is a loss so he gets to see the mistakes [usually but not always] so his view from his side of the table is various level's of incompetence.  More than not he is called upon to find incompetence, rather than inspect and report how perfect the alarm system was installed or service provided.  That he is slightly jaded is no surprise, but don't fault him.  If all alarm people were perfect experts there would be less need for alarm experts to review faulty installations.  
    As far as asking questions, on this forum or elsewhere, it's a great way to learn.  When you go to law school and are faced with all the research issues one of first things an upper classmen may tell you is that "someone knows", so ask around for help.  It's ok in law practice and it's ok in the alarm business.  It's ok to ask questions that might seem elementary, just try and be sure you only have to ask it once before you decide to do the installation.