@app: there are some strange robbers in your residence area, i see
@fodder: that's sorry to know, policeman should be honest people, at least as long as they are on duty
Actually they should be honest, even when off-duty. The have higher powers compared to civilians and thus should have even better integrity than the normal folk.
Anyway my bike was stolen while in Chicago too, was an $80 bike, had it for a week, had a cheapo $20 cable lock, was locked in front of dorm room, gone the next morning. Didn't buy another though.
I have a cool new mtb now $300 gary fisher wahoo '07, and i keep it in my room
, no more parking outside and letting it out of my sight, learnt my lesson. It sees a lot of action once a month at least (www.bangkokbikehash.com
Anyway I'd read a few articles online about locks, sounds like good advice.http://www.slate.com/id/2140083
But the bottomline is to a dedicated thief most bike's aren't a problem.
The key is to make your bike harder to get to and look less attractive that the bikes around it... one of the other posters had the right idea, duct it up and all that. One more thing i remember our campus had was Bike registration, maybe your police station or something has a program like that? If not you can still try and see if you can get it implemented, that way at least if it is ever found you can be contacted.
And you know the usual advice, don't park in seedy areas ...etc. Take your bike indoors and park it inside if possible? I have managed to drag my bike indoors in some places and leave it there...
On the more creative side you can also try putting stickers on your bike like:
"This bike has a GPS locater", "God will hurt you real bad if you steal this bike here", "There is a time bomb in the bike tubes"...
On another freaky note, I've heard that in India when bikes get stolen, they chop it up and use the smooth barrels to create temporary impromptu pistols... scary stuff