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2013 CryWolf® Users Conference

I'm sure that most readers understand by now that I spend a lot of time using CryWolf® to do my job. Without this tool, my job would be infinitely more time consuming and a lot more difficult. I am always thrilled to learn how I can use CryWolf® to be more efficient--especially when I don't have to teach myself how to do it. Needless to say, the annual CryWolf® users conference has become one of the highlights of the year for me. I truly appreciate that Public Safety Corporation (PSC) has chosen to have this training in conjunction with the False Alarm Reduction Association's (FARA) annual symposium. I have met individuals from several jurisdictions that are introduced to FARA because of this scheduling choice. It also allows jurisdictions to gain more value for the money.
But enough about that, I know that you are reading to find out what is new and exciting in the world of CryWolf®. PSC announced last year that a new client section of their website would allow interaction between users through file sharing. That plan has come to fruition with their new website at cry wolf.us. The new client section includes a knowledge base, a link to CryWolf® University, the most recent version of CryWolf® to download, and a file sharing section. I think that these will be great resources for all of us. The knowledge base will contain the most up to date help files which will be a great resource, but I am more excited to check out the file sharing sharing page. Here, users will be able to upload forms, reports, and more that we have developed. The more that we users add to this, the more helpful it will become for everyone.
As mentioned last year, PSC is sticking with the plan to officially release new versions twice a year (January and July). However, they are continually making changes and updating things. If you like to have the most up to date version as soon as it becomes available, the new download section will be helpful to you. I personally prefer the option that checks for updates every time I log in to CryWolf® and notifies me with a message right on the toolbar. Many agencies block this feature, and even I must have our department IT coordinator actually do the install of the update when one is available.
Along with these big things, there were lots of fun features announced:

  • ability to send letters to multiple e-mail addresses
  • ability to drag and drop files to alarm company form
  • ability to search the related names fields
  • alarm processing form shows alarmed location and responsible party phone numbers
PSC has also been pursuing other avenues for department's to utilize the information stored in CryWolf®. Last year, the new Android app for officers on the street was introduced. this year, a LAN version for dispatch and an MDC applet were introduced. Also, the citizen facing pages will continue to be tweaked.
PSC is always so generous and this year was no exception. Each attendee was given a "survival kit" with items such as tissues, candy, hand sanitizer, and a mouse pad all packaged in a tote bag that converts to a backpack.  The dinner following the conference was yummy and allowed users to network and share.
All in all, it was a great afternoon and evening and worth every minute. As I try out the new features, I will be sharing with you. If you weren't able to attend, start planting the seeds now for next year.

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