Sometimes turning off an alarm is a good idea and sometimes it is not. Wisdom is knowing which to do.

Alarms may be:

(1) device-related

(2) integrated into a larger system such as a power plant)

(3) cultural and societal


When to consider turning off an alarm:

(1) broken or malfunctioning alarm

(2) a very large number of false positives


When it is a bad idea to turn off an alarm:

(1) avoiding or not wanting to deal with the problem

(2) true positive


Ways societies turn off alarms:

(1) indoctrination, with an alternative explanation that justifies a situation

(2) distraction

(3) intoxication

(4) legality

(5) brutality


If turning off an alarm is being contemplated, then it is important

(1) to define what the problem with the alarm is

(2) to understand what function the alarm is intended to provide

(3) to replace or repair the alarm if malfunction is the issue

(4) to implement an alternative monitoring strategy to detect the problem(s) that the alarm was intended to identify

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