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RFID tags; your views


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View Poll Results: What do you think of RFID?
A good thing, the benefits for industry and the customer are amazing 2 14.29%
teh EVIL! Big brother is watching me 4 28.57%
I haven't decided. 3 21.43%
Inventory tracking: okay. Human tracking: not okay. 5 35.71%
Voters: 14. You may not vote on this poll

RFID tags; your views
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turbulentfurball
Right Honourable Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Québec
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2006-04-20, 07:50

I'm almost finished my 10,000 word dissertation on the subject of RFID tags; the benefits brought by them, and the difficulties encountered by organisations which have implemented the technology.

I've found that one of the most significant problems encountered, was the the negative public perceptions of the technology with regard to privacy issues. I currently have a neutral point of view, since I can see the massive benefits that RFID can bring, but I have also found some pretty disturbing uses of the technology. For example, Tesco and Gillette carried out a joint trial which involved the activation of the RFID tag bringing up CCTV images of the customers who removed the Gillette blades from the 'smart shelf'. I found that pretty astounding. However, from a purely business perspective, RFID may be one of the most significant technological advances for a number of years. The focus of my study was on supply chain management, which is the focus of my degree, and the benefits in that industry are astounding; near complete visibility of items throughout the supply chain, a decrease in spoilage, a decrease in theft, a decrease in labour costs, and most significantly increased availability of goods in stores with a resulting increase in sales.

My question is: What do you think of RFID?
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AWR
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: State of Flux
 
2006-04-20, 08:02

Can I suggest another Poll option?

What's RFID/RIFD etc.?
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turbulentfurball
Right Honourable Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Québec
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2006-04-20, 08:11

Radio Frequency Identification.

Wikipedia article on the subject

And here's a picture of an RFID tag

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sunrain
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Portlandia
 
2006-04-20, 08:14

With great power comes great responsibility.
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Mugge
Thunderbolt, fuck yeah!
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: Denmark
 
2006-04-20, 09:09

From a commercial standpoint I dig it.

But let's see what kind of havoc these little buggers will wreak in the next season of 24...

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ghoti
owner for sale by house
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Charlotte, NC
 
2006-04-20, 09:24

You summed things up nicely, furball, but the question is not so much one of what good and evil they can do, but what we think the good stuff is worth. There is certainly a lot of misinformation (e.g., many people believe that you could easily tag all kinds of things with RFIDs without people knowing, but since an RFID needs an antenna, that's not quite so easy), and a LOT of commercial interest in pushing this technology.

Overall, I think RFID is a good thing, but a few questions need to be sorted out, and the orgasmic praise on the one side and the paranoid hysteria on the other have to converge on some kind of common idea of how things can and should be done.
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Brad
Selfish Heathen
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Zone of Pain
 
2006-04-20, 10:02

RFIDs on commercial goods? Okay.

RFIDs in your wallet on your passport and other IDs? Not okay.
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curiousuburb
Antimatter Man
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: that interweb thing
 
2006-04-20, 10:19

Quote:
Originally Posted by Brad
RFIDs on commercial goods? Okay.

RFIDs in your wallet on your passport and other IDs? Not okay.
What he said...

We need a poll option for this distinction...

Inventory tracking, ok.
Human tracking, not ok.
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Brad
Selfish Heathen
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Zone of Pain
 
2006-04-20, 10:23

Good point. Done!
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Brad
Selfish Heathen
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Zone of Pain
 
2006-04-20, 10:26

By the way, in case no one realize how RFIDs are being used to track people and to insecurely store personal information by the government and others, please read these articles:

Fighting mandatory RFID in schools

California school drops student RFID badges

FDA approves implanted RFID chip for humans

Feds considering more secure RFID passport scheme, and CA planning to ban RFID from state ID documents

All US passports to use RFID within a year

RFID chips can carry viruses

Not that RFIDs can be read from several feet away without your knowledge. I could carry a scanner in a backback, for example, and pick up people's passport info as I walk down the street.

The quality of this board depends on the quality of the posts. The only way to guarantee thoughtful, informative discussion is to write thoughtful, informative posts. AppleNova is not a real-time chat forum. You have time to compose messages and edit them before and after posting.
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ghoti
owner for sale by house
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Charlotte, NC
 
2006-04-20, 10:27

While human tracking with RFID'd passports is certainly not okay, RFIDs could do a lot for making it pretty much impossible to forge a passport. The current solutions for keeping RFIDs unreadable while the passport is closed aren't exactly perfect, but if they wanted to, they could come up with a way of doing it (e.g., you would have to push in a certain spot to close an electrical contact) that could be satisfactory.
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