AI Weapons Detection with Mike Lahiff of ZeroEyes

The sad reality is that mass shootings have become commonplace in modern America. This new threat poses a special challenge for schools, workplaces, movie theaters, and anywhere the public gathers.

But new threats also mean new protections. Learning that no one monitored the security cameras at his daughter’s school, Mike Lahiff realized that new technologies could monitor them automatically.

And ZeroEyes was born—a technology startup that offers an AI weapons detection system that can quickly identify threats and escalate them to the appropriate security officials for rapid response.

More information:

Mike Lahiff is the Chief Executive Officer & Co-Founder of ZeroEyes. Before founding ZeroEyes in 2018, he founded S4 Properties which focused on multi-family real estate investments, served as the Director of Digital Program Management at Comcast, and a Managing Partner at the private investment firm Horsemen Partners. Mike also served in the US Navy as a Navy SEAL for 10 years. 

Mike earned his MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, and a Bachelor of Science in Finance from Columbia College.

ZeroEyes is the industry’s leading AI-based weapons detection solution. Its software integrates into existing security and surveillance camera systems and sends out a series of alerts when a verified gun is detected via our best-in-class weapons detection algorithms. The ZeroEyes platform is the most proactive and actionable early-warning system on the market, allowing users to “stop threats at first sight, not first shot.” 

DISCLAIMER: Below is an AI generated transcript. There could be a few typos but it should be at least 90% accurate. Watch video or listen to the podcast for the full experience!

Mike Lahiff 0:00
Gun Violence has been surging. It’s a mass shooter. Active Shooter thing is not going away anytime soon. And something’s needed someone needs to do something.

Alexander Ferguson 0:18
Welcome to UpTech Report. This is our applied tech series UpTech Report is sponsored by TeraLeap. Learn how to leverage the power of video at Today, I’m excited to be joined by my guest, Mike Lahiff, who’s based in the Philadelphia area. He’s the CEO at ZeroEyes. Welcome, Mike. Good to have you on.

Mike Lahiff 0:36
Thanks, Alexander. appreciate you having me on the show.

Alexander Ferguson 0:40
Now, what we’re going to talk about today is start with what I understand the product is and then to hear your journey as a founder of this company, what that’s been like. And then we’ll end again on the technology itself, where you see it going in the future. From what I understand zero eyes, if pulling from your website is an AI based weapons detection solution platform, or your marketing slogan here, stop threats at first sight, not first shots. So basically, you’re trained using your AI, you trained it to detect weapons, then they’re looking through security cameras. So if a gun is detected, it’s pushed to a person, someone sees a gun, if it’s a real threat, they push to 911 within three to five seconds. And this is like schools and campuses. And that is that this solution Do I understand correctly?

Mike Lahiff 1:25
Yep, that’s it. Right? You summed it up really well.

Alexander Ferguson 1:30
It’s it’s a fascinating space right now because it’s so much in the news and people all right, security’s guns going off, but your angle of this is tried to, and I like your slogan to be able to detect it before anyone shoots it. And no one can look at all these security cameras all the time ever. good use for technology. Take me back though. Where did this all begin? You’re not uh, you didn’t actually start as a tech guy, right?

Mike Lahiff 1:55
No, I did not. I mean, how far back You want me to go?

Alexander Ferguson 1:58
Let’s Let’s go all the way back. I mean, like, what, what’s, what’s your background?

Mike Lahiff 2:02
Okay, so I was in college when 911 happened. I dropped out about a year later and enlisted in the Navy with the goal to become a seal. That’s where I met our other co founders for some of them. And then I did that until 2013. I finished my undergrad while I was in the military. I left active duty for really spend more time with my family. I didn’t see my kids much. I was constantly deployed, and then applied to B school. I was fortunate to get into Wharton and I’m from the Philly area. So I moved back to Philadelphia. And when I was at Wharton, I was like, Okay, I just left my dream job. What am I gonna do now and I dabbled a little bit everything I started off. tech startups. That’s where I met our current CTO, Tim Sulzer. He was actually my first boss when I got out of the Navy, and then went into private equity. Then I went corporate over a Comcast, Director of Digital program management and I had a real estate side hustle, investing in multifamily real estate investments. And then in 2018, after the Parkland school shooting, my daughter’s school started doing a lot of they call them lockdown drills, but it’s, it’s just a nice term for an active shooter drill. She was really up to came home really upset about it, like, hey, they’re going to dad or they’re going to shoot our school like they’re doing to these other schools, because at the time, it was like, it seemed like every other month, you turn on a news or as another school shooting. And I was just like, Dude, this is crazy. So few weeks went by, I was at our school for an indoor lacrosse practice, because it was still kind of like winter transitioning in the spring. And I was looking around, and there was a security camera literally, like every 15 feet. And I was and it’s a big building. Security Guard was walking by I was like, Hey, who’s watching the security cameras? And he was like, he slapped and he was like, no one’s watching. No, he’s like, we only look at them after something happens like a school fights all breaks into a locker or crime, whatever, something something bad happened. And I was like, how many do you have here? And he was like, I think around 250 250 cameras, and I was just like, wait a second did like some quick math in my head. I’m like, just and this is a middle school. And I was I knew some folks that were already doing computer vision around facial recognition technology. And I was like, Oh, be compelling and put in a school. But then you have all these privacy concerns. And there’s a lot of headwinds with that with ACLU and rightfully so. I was like, wait, well, why don’t we just use these cameras, tech guns. Stalking a person is detecting an object. Everyone wants to know when there’s a gun open somewhere, especially in a place like a school. And then if we could send that information to first responders, so now they know what the shooter looks like, what type of weapon they’re carrying, and where they’re located at because I absolutely would love to have that information, like almost real time while in the military. That That would have been It just will help reduce response time. So it just, it would all be a better workout better for first responders in new situations. And so we started zero eyes, and it started off in my basement. And

Alexander Ferguson 5:14
here we are. So this is 2018, you officially began when was did your your daughter come home from school? And this this idea was a 2018?

Mike Lahiff 5:25
Yeah, it was in February, like, couple days after the Parkland school shooting.

Alexander Ferguson 5:30
And and so you you, you realize all these cameras, no one’s looking at them. I know some people in AI, there’s got to be solutions. So you have three other co founders. Is that right? Now there’s five of us. There’s five of you. Okay, gotcha. So there’s four of the co founders. And then in your basement, you you start to just train the AI on detecting weapons.

Mike Lahiff 5:50
Yeah. So first, kind of, we’re kicking around a bunch of ideas with like, weapon detection was one of them. Like, I really have to get into all that. But we’re, you know, it was a lot of whiteboarding. And then guys sleeping in hammocks in my basement, and we’re like, okay, we need money for this. Everyone quit their jobs. Everyone, like put money

Alexander Ferguson 6:12
at your place. See the vision. They’re like, Alright, I’m gonna leave everything and jump into this. Yeah,

Mike Lahiff 6:17
yeah, it was. Everyone quit. We all quit, right? Same time, or it was like within a month or two of each other. And we’re like, literally sold everything that we had. And just like,

Alexander Ferguson 6:28
what do you all have families, or just you or

Mike Lahiff 6:33
three out of the five of us, three of us have kids, and,

Alexander Ferguson 6:37
and you’re like, Alright, but they saw the vision quit quit your job. Let’s go to your basement. Let’s train some AI.

Mike Lahiff 6:42
Yeah. And then well, so we’re like, Okay, first, we need something to tax a gun, right. And so we started building an AI model. And then we’re just we’re running web scraping tools and is pulling images off the internet, you get images, you go like go and order data sets of whatever image you want. And so we train a model with that, and we ran it over a YouTube video is a clip of the matrix movie actually, where like, they walk into the like the elevator lobby room, and it was protecting guns were like, Oh, this is sweet. And I was like, Alright, next phase, let’s hook up some security cameras to the back of the house and walk around our guts. And a bunch of us came from the military and a seal teams, and we’ve access to plenty of guns. And so we went out in my yard, and we’re walking around long guns. And my backyard had kids bikes in it, there was a crosstex, laying on the ground or basketball, and he thought everything was a gun. I was like, Okay, this is a problem. And then yeah, we just kept a B testing, we kept going back and, and then very quickly, we came in conclusion, like our data is absolutely garbage. So we collected all of our own data, we still do to this day, we have a full dedicated AI team with an AI lab, where we record ourselves in a variety of different environments, and then meticulously curate that data to go into our training model, we still do the AV testing that we did that day, three years later, to constantly make tweaks and improve it. And it’s there’s been a lot of articles written in the last last year about, you know, everyone wants to go the easy parts, making a model, right? The hard part, which everyone overlooks is the data that goes into it. And that’s, that’s huge. So we have, we’re very proud of our data sets,

Alexander Ferguson 8:40
I could have met you, you definitely build a, a walled garden around that effect, that you have your own people training and recording it, you’re not just scraping it from the internet. But that’s that’s the real key of of not having lots of false positives, right. But you still have a human in the loop in your end solution, which sounds like it’s critical.

Mike Lahiff 8:59
Yeah, I don’t I think in any AI component, you really need to hear well, I shouldn’t say any, but you need that. For something like what we’re trying to do you need a human in the loop. You can’t just rely on some algorithm through a machine to do that. We all employ it. Like we’ve really focused on partnering with our customers and we want to be there for them and well them help them with their security concerns. And if you’re getting annihilated by a bunch of false positives, false alarms, that’d be really annoying. Like Imagine if you went and put in a fire alarm system at a school and it went off like all the time, they’d be like, Dude, come on, this is nice.

Alexander Ferguson 9:38
And we all get annoyed at smoke alarms that when that when it beeps because the battery’s ready to be changed like to stop beeping whatever, or it goes off because the ovens open or whatever. So it’s definitely in a in a enterprise space or, at this level, it has to work has to be reliable. You started 2018 When did when what’s kind of the timeline that you start to roll use rolling this out.

Mike Lahiff 10:01
So it’s what we came together. March 2018. We like formed it may is like when everyone was like officially quit their jobs sleeping in my basement. We’re heads down there for the next six months just to get an MVP. So it was like a focus on the model. And then we’re like, Okay, great. We have a model, at least one that wasn’t like completely embarrassing to go show people it was like, looking back on. And now I’m like, wow, that was bad. But then then it was, okay, we need to demo this to someone. So we get into a beta site. And we’re like, wait, we have to adjust a camera feed. And so we had to start like thinking about adjusting camera feeds. And we’re like, let’s just get right with one camera feed. And we could focus on the scalability of that. So then it took a couple months, we did demos we got into we had someone Roger up and say, Yeah, well, we’ll, we’ll let you guys test this out here. And then we’d be ready. If you guys get it working, it works well, would be interested in buying it. And we’re like, okay, and that took that took like a year. So we went to a school in New Jersey, and they were phenomenal. They’re still customer to this day. Our first customer too. And we’re head south focuser, we’re that they’re really great. And so we’re like the local community, local police, the let us go into the school and test and train on our system. And so we had to like to approach to it while actually it was like three, one was like focused on the AI model and the performance in different lighting conditions, different heights of cameras, different types of cadet a plethora of different cameras at the school. And we just meticulously collected all the data. So we from us testing ourselves. So we could go back and tweak the AI model that it was also Alright, how do we take all these camera feeds and pump it into one system and have the AI model run over it? And we’re like, okay, let’s start checking those boxes. But that was like, okay, it’s alerted? Who’s that alert going to? And what’s that process look like? How are they looking at it? How do they want to receive it? Because we thought it was going to be one way. And it ended up being a totally, completely different way.

Alexander Ferguson 12:01
What was that? What did you initially see it as working as

Mike Lahiff 12:05
we thought like cops were going to be running around with our app and stuff like that, and it doesn’t work that way. And so and then we started embedding ourselves at the 911 Center to see how they would handle it if they received and, you know, we just spent a lot of time with the customer to understand like, Okay, you got this information. What are you going to do? How do you how are you going to look at it? How are you going to receive it. And so we did all that. And then when we got, we’re like, we showed it to them, we did some demos, and like everyone was like, Oh, this is great, awesome. And then like we got some PR around it, which was great, like a couple local news stations picked up on it. And then that kind of spread from there. And then we started getting inbound leads, which was where like, we didn’t even start a sales process yet. Great. And then, but the school was like, hey, before we purchase, we need to local police to give this this thumbs up. And police in general are very skeptical of new technologies, rightfully so. But so they had seven, seven different police stations throughout Southern New Jersey come to this place. And they did active shooter drills for like two, three days. After the full It was like the whole gambit. It was like a big show. We weren’t allowed to be involved. But they sit there and like they clocked it from like, using a system and not using the system. And it was like an average of 50% reduction in response time. And it wasn’t like yeah, we want to detect that gun before shots are fired. That’s like the best case scenario and you get it out and no one gets hurt. But even if shots are already being fired, but we then we get those detections and they’re still getting that information. It still helps a response time because and that’s what the police were saying. And the thing was like we weren’t expecting, like that tagline stop threats at first sight, not first shot. We didn’t even come up with that. It was actually the one of the police chiefs that was there. And we’re like, can we use that and add that. So it was even just getting that information to them. Because if you think like Parkland, for example. A lot of people responded to the stadium. A lot of the first responders went to the stadium because they thought it was there. Because you show up to like a 50 acre campus and all they know they’re walking into an active shooter scenario they wanted to Stadium, but really the active shooter was inside the building. He was shooting out the second storey window towards the stadium. And so and then he went to McDonald’s afterwards. And it’s like, it’s like, giving them the information. Now it’s like, no, it’s a 510 white male appears to be carrying an assault rifle and he’s at the southeast corner, first floor of the main building. The police were like boom, got it, okay, I know where I’m going.

Alexander Ferguson 14:45
It’s not just the fact that you know, an active shooter is there or the one with weapon, it’s where they are, who they are, what they’re carrying, it’s all the additional information that you’re able to pull directly from that feed. That multi Customer aspect that you have. So you have the campus, the school their customer, but I guess the police is are your customer as well.

Mike Lahiff 15:10
They’re more like a champion, I would look them as a champion, typically. Well, depends please can be a customer, depending on what district it is what state etc. Because some police districts or stations wherever you want to call it. They don’t own any security cameras, they just use the security cameras in the municipality or at the school, etc. Some places they don’t let them. And so it’s that that’s a little different, but we look at them as like kind of being a champion in some regards. Actually not being the champion. That’s it.

Alexander Ferguson 15:43
Is there. Has there been any pushback and what has that pushback then?

Mike Lahiff 15:47
No, we haven’t received pushback yet. I mean, there’s a the naysayers and haters that come out all the time. Like it was never going to work and blah, blah and like Well, okay, who knows? We’ll see like it any entrepreneur faces that in any endeavor that? No, because people realize it’s not it’s not it’s detecting an object. It’s not like doing facial recognition.

Alexander Ferguson 16:09
It’s not doing my best thing. One of the main concerns or issues people have around AI and detection.

Mike Lahiff 16:15
Yep. We’re not storing people’s biometric data and nothing like that. And it’s just about giving people it’s theirs. You could walk down a street in any town city United States and you’ll see 1000s spend one day walking for a few hours to a city or like a populated town and you’ll count hundreds of cameras and no one’s doing anything with them it’s just the way and there’s a gun violence has been surging it’s the mass shooter active shooter thing is not going away anytime soon. And sometimes needed someone needs to do something so

Alexander Ferguson 16:57
and you and you you fully believe this, this could turn into a billion dollar business

Mike Lahiff 17:01
Yeah, I do. It’s it’s, it’s not even about that. It’s if you think about like going back to all the cameras like this happening at any one building or location, the probability super low. But then when you add them all together, eternal news every day, there’s another mass shooting every day. So you get in enough locations you’re going to you’re going to see it happened and we just want to help one of those situations and then that equates to saving lives if it’s stopping it before shots are fired, fantastic if it’s if it’s after shots are fired, but we helped get the police there sooner so they can provide first aid and stop threat before more people are hurt. Awesome. And we could look back and say we saved some lives. It’s that’s done. I mean, a while won’t be done. But I’m like that’s that’s been like our mission from day one. So

Alexander Ferguson 17:51
is speaking of there, there are cases where your your product is in play, and it’s been used. I don’t think you can speak to them, probably because of confidentiality, but it has been used, I

Mike Lahiff 18:03
guess. We’re I forget how many states were in right now. Like 15. We have everything from education, market clients, commercial clients. And it’s center everything office buildings, retail schools, etc. And it’s been used and fortunately, it wasn’t someone trying to be like an active shooter mass shooter turned out to knock on wood, hope it stays this way. But it was kids being idiots playing what the one was, that turned out to be a pellet gun, which was were like, but they’re gonna you know, from the time we saw the alert to got to the police to the time to get pulled out the weapon it was, I think it took like, two minutes to apprehend him two minutes

Alexander Ferguson 18:50
from taking it out to apprehend the time that we notified them. Wow. Yeah. Wow. So it’s a good good case of it wasn’t wouldn’t have been a bad thing. But still, it shows the that it works. That it detects it. I’m gonna ask you a question from a different angle here. Because you’re really bringing in a whole new way to solve a unique problem with technology. And there’s a lot of entrepreneurs out there that tech leaders that have ideas, they want to apply this new technology idea. But there’s always pushback, there’s the fear of the unknown, trying something new. What would you say to that someone of what you’ve learned, how do you get someone to adopt a new technology,

Mike Lahiff 19:31
like Crossing the Chasm, looking for those early adopters. You got to create awareness, you got to get out there and pound the pavement and be able to speak to your to the problem you’re solving or trying to, you got to be able to be like state the problem easily this is the problem. This is what we’re trying to solve. And then speak to your product and understand its weaknesses and strengths because like nothing is perfect in this world. And then have that vision for them. Like Yeah, you work with us now it’s at this state but it will be here in the future. But this is helping you with this problem. I don’t think there’s any more magic to it.

Alexander Ferguson 20:11
I love you like it’s not that hard. You just here’s the problem. Here’s the solution. And and presented properly. Do you feel you’re naturally born salesperson is like that? Wow.

Mike Lahiff 20:22
Now Definitely not. When I’m passionate about something, I’m like, really involved with something like, yeah, I could. I could. It’s not that I’m even selling. I’m just, it’s not that I’m like, Oh, I’m gonna go out. And I’m like speaking to like this is needed. Like,

Alexander Ferguson 20:38
let’s say, the mix of your co founders, the other four co founders. How did that turn out? You just guys. We’re all buddies. They’re all decided this is a good problem to solve together. Yeah, so

Mike Lahiff 20:48
four of us came from the seal teams and we knew each other from our days working in the seal teams like literally been wore together multiple times. Tim was not in the military. And but Tim’s is one that I worked for when I got out of war. When I was in high school. He was my first boss when I got out of the Navy. But like Rob, Sam, they left and Dawson, they all left the military right around the same time as me. And then they’re like, trying to figure out life and like, Rob also went to Wharton, then he worked at Amazon for a couple years, Sam went to Columbia and he went into private equity. Then he was jumping into portfolio companies and kind of being a fixer, like you’d take on a role for a little bit, fix it, they’d hire someone to backfill and they would jump to the next portfolio company. Dawson, Dawson, Vanderbilt MBA and did government contracting work and bounce over so we got we all got, we’re like a jack of all trades, master of none. And we say that in the seal teams to which is funny except for Tim. Tim is Tim is just the he’s a super sharp guy, like I never saw someone that’s at the same time, like so smart. But like works so hard and is and can be self taught and just true problem solver. And so all of us brought all of our PR even though we’re all coming from like the seal background, but like we all bring different, different traits to the table because we’re just different people different personalities, where we think about things and like the way we we test and pressure each other and poke at each other. So to think differently, and just worked out well. For those

Alexander Ferguson 22:28
that would be thinking about having co founders or hiring team members that have a military background, what do you say is that the benefits or the value that kind of helps has helped you in your career and your at being that in your co

Mike Lahiff 22:40
founders? Yeah, I mean, if if you’re looking to hire vets, or like even final on to be a co founder with you, it’s one if you have the right mission, they’re going to they’re going to anyone that went into the military over the last 20 years, there were volunteer there were volunteering to go into something where they knew they were going to go get put in a war situation. So right there, this speaks volumes. If you have them on your team behind the right mission to make a difference in this world, there’s nothing that’s going to stop them. But then they also have like the discipline and rigor to get things done. Even if they don’t know how to do something. They’re the type of people that are going to find a way to get it done no matter what might not be very pretty getting from A to B but they’ll get there. That’s it and that is well that’s not it. There’s the the integrity part but I’m not going to say everyone coming out of military has integrity that would be a very, very bold statement. But there’s a high probability of it. And a work ethic like you match those to you doesn’t matter what the person’s education is the ease get a lot done.

Alexander Ferguson 23:56
for you as a leader This is a first company that you’ve well not the first time you found you said you’ve that you’ve dabbled in retail, sorry, a real estate and some other things. How have you grown as a leader What have you looked to what what would you say is a lesson learned as a leader.

Mike Lahiff 24:16
I’ve been trying to get a lot better about sitting on problems before responding to them. I like to even if it seems like it is hot, like I need to do something about it right now I’d like to really think about it for like a day and then sleep on it. A lot of good things come to me in my sleep. I wake up and try to jot down notes real quick before it fleets my mind. I’ve gotten a lot better at that. And then also I have a short temper, and it’s definitely been a weakness of mine for basically my whole life. And so I really try to hone in on that and recognize when it’s happening take breather might not need to say anything right now and like and then sit on it Milan and like come to a new problem. And the other thing is is like I realized and it took even though we negotiate it and everything more in the seal teams you’re over there in Afghanistan working with different groups and etc You’re everything is a negotiation but I didn’t it didn’t really click For me it was like when I was at Wharton, you take a really great negotiations class I read some books on it and stuff. But now I realize especially because I have teenagers, everything in life is a negotiation, like literally everything. And obviously in business, if it’s with my peers, people that are working for us or if it’s with investors or board, partners, vendors, etc. concept and then so you just you, you try to put yourself in other people shoes sometimes and see it from multiple angles. So like, you might not win the negotiation. But if everyone’s walking away from the table, not like no one’s like super pissed off and no one’s like, everyone’s like, that’s probably worked out well. And so like understanding how that works.

Alexander Ferguson 26:14
Negotiate everything is a negotiation.

Mike Lahiff 26:17
Literally ready?

Alexander Ferguson 26:19
Did you always realize that? Or is that just more of a more recent learning.

Mike Lahiff 26:25
Now in the last day, it started zero as I realize, oh my god, everything is a negotiation with my kids.

Alexander Ferguson 26:33
For this, this company was the first time you raise capital yourself.

Mike Lahiff 26:39
Now, so when I left Wharton, I did a search fund. It was called a horseman partners. It was based off of our platoon name and the seal teams were the PEL horsemen and So Sam and I Sam was at Columbia Business School as at Wharton we’re in the same year group we were trying to buy a company on our own and we had we’re like let’s buy a business and we’ll run it and change it and whatever we thought was a great idea I knew nothing about search funds no we came across search funds I’m not sure if you’re familiar with search funds it’s like a micro p vehicle where you go out and raise capital from investors and it’s usually around like 600k and that gives you runway for two years so it pays like you like a salary and overhead and you go and try to find a business within those two years to purchase from so that wants to sell their business so like you’re not in like looking at the pea sized companies you’re looking somewhere around like one and a half million in EBIT ah to 5 million in EBIT up roughly looking for a good business buying and when you buy that business you jump in as a CEO and you run that business and then the investors that funded you to go find that business day one they like sit on a board and then but they structured a deal so like yeah you partake in the equity upside but the the terms they get are very good for them not so good for I mean it’s still fair It was absolutely fair like because we didn’t have two nickels to rub together. And I Sam that we just learned so much during that process as to your so that’s when I the first time I raise capital

Alexander Ferguson 28:20
and so you were very familiar with that concept and when you got to zero so it was kind of straightforward.

Mike Lahiff 28:25
No it wasn’t because raising capital for for a startup and especially in a SAS type world is much different than raising capital go buy a business just similar, but not it’s apples there’s both fruit you’re raising capital but it’s apples and oranges.

Alexander Ferguson 28:46
The the if you kind of look back over the years and you think about where were you got your greatest insight. Were there any books or audiobooks or just places you go to or things that have stuck with you that have been?

Mike Lahiff 29:05
Yeah, I’m a I’m a pretty voracious reader. Actually, I haven’t been in like less since starting zero eyes I don’t read nor near as much. I just all my time is like kids work. Lots of books that I’ve read over the years. I was such a huge fan of like Warren Buffett like once I went to Ty’s in college and started understanding and investing. I was always on like the Motley Fool calm like looking at things hell no if you’re familiar with full calm, I used to do a lot of stock stuff when I was in the military like on the side because you couldn’t really start a company or anything. Then it went into you know, podcasts. There’s, there’s quite a few that I like to Tim Ferriss books were always great. They just made me think about business differently. And I really enjoy his podcast. Obviously Joe Rogan would pop in and out of there but that’s it. I got more from the business side of things from from Tim Ferriss. When I started the real estate thing there was a thing called a podcast called bigger pockets. Great podcast if you want to get into real estate investing on your own, like flipping houses or buying houses, rehabbing them and putting tenants in and being a landlord just thinking about that process that was phenomenal Yeah, a lot a lot of the books I’ve read in the last couple of years there were more around everything from like emotional intelligence to to negotiations and thinking through problems and

Alexander Ferguson 30:40
one of those why I like doing this series is just hearing how you learn as an entrepreneur the journey that you’ve been on to technology I always love the technology too. But also just like as a person individual how do you how do you manage your life your time and you’ve already mentioned you have kids a family multiple kids were How do you manage your time running a new startup now you know three three years in and a family any lessons learned there?

Mike Lahiff 31:08
Yeah that’s the other thing Yeah, doing an entrepreneur thing a first year this I was not doing it I was like, my my personal health well being like totally went out the window and I was like, but yeah, you got to focus on you got to take care you can’t take care of anyone else if you’re not taking care of yourself because the wheels just start falling off the bus so like and this is stuff that we knew from the seal teams and everything else but like, gotta get good sleep, get good eat right doesn’t mean you can’t go out and have pizza or wings or something on a weekend but like you know, eat right during the week when you can make sure you get exercise and even if it’s only like an hour walk or even 15 minutes of some quick workout. Try to get that in every day it’s really important I could feel it myself out workout for like two weeks or something like it started we’ll start messing with me meditation huge that got really into that in the last two and a half years with yoga which is surprising if you asked me 10 years ago if I’d be a meditator or yoga I’ve noticed things but again you’re stressed for time and every aspect so I like to get up at like in between hours like four and 530 and I usually go right to my cup of coffee and I get on my computer like within like 1520 minutes of waking up some people might say don’t do that but it works for me so I do it and I get all my stuff out to everyone I need to an early morning hours and so then I then like you know I think about it like attack attack attack and get all my stuff out and then then I go into receive mode and I’m waiting for everyone to get back to me for things so I like cleared all my stuff off my plate kids are at school that’s all taken care of whatever I need to get done at house is done and I could go get quick get that quick exercise and eat something healthy for lunch and then you catch up on a couple phone calls and then at the end of the day wrap up with the receive mode and and prep everything for that next morning and then I look at those problems and then that’s when I’m like okay, I’m going to like I try to pick one or two no more than that were like to think about before I go to bed so like when I sleep I like really goes into my head

Alexander Ferguson 33:23
you mentioned that earlier that you go with good solutions in your sleep we always working even in your sleep what’s your what’s your nightly prep routine for the next day look like?

Mike Lahiff 33:36
I try to get off electronics pretty early or like shut the phone off. That’s almost impossible, though. But like I’ll still like check quick messages like I’ve I feel like that’s as long as you’re an entrepreneur and a company you’re eager and I have that problem but you have to get to a point where like, okay, that’s done for the night. Yeah, like relaxing at night, hanging out. watching Netflix or something something stupid mind numbing that like just like totally like. And then I try to get to sleep around 930 or 10. I’ll drink like a cup of tea or something with magnesium in it and make sure I’m hydrated and then go see.

Alexander Ferguson 34:15
Simple as that.

Mike Lahiff 34:17
Sometimes I have to listen to like some like nighttime, but like binaural beats got really into that and the last two years and I love them too. They really helped me when I work. We’re wanting to depend on what kind you’re listening to.

Alexander Ferguson 34:28
But I’m going to switch gears a little bit here on this final question. You’ve been in the business world for a while going Wharton and looking starting different things. And now you have this tech SAS company. Looking at the future of I guess security and and the technology innovations. What do you predict we’ll see in the next five years from now.

Mike Lahiff 34:51
I think you’re going to see a much closer intertwine. of cyber and physical, it’s just it’s gone to, I just see that coming closer and closer together. Cameras are everywhere. video analytics are just gonna keep going through the roof. Depending on what type it is, especially because the computing power to like perform video analytics at scale is finally catching up with GPUs and everything. It’s like he didn’t really have that. It was very cost prohibitive before I think that’s coming down. So you’re gonna see more and more of that. And then the integrations into to the robotic piece of that if it’s a drone, or some type of dog robot, or whatever it is, you’re gonna see a lot of that too.

Alexander Ferguson 35:42
Might you have shared a ton of information in a very short amount of time, I don’t know if that’s your military background, or just just who you are just like boom, boom, boom, give us all the data. This has been fantastic. For those that want to learn more, they can head over to zeroeyes. com. That’s Thank you for your time. It’s been a pleasure.

Mike Lahiff 36:03
Yeah, thank you for having me on. I really appreciate it.

Alexander Ferguson 36:06
And we’ll see you all on the next episode of UpTech Report. Have you seen a company using AI machine learning or other technology to transform the way we live, work and do business? Go to UpTech And let us know


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