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Subject-Matter Experts Needed to Accelerate Certification Efforts

The International RFID Institute is seeking SMEs to help us increase our database of certification questions, and to create new certification exams.
By Josef Preishuber-Pflügl
Jul 13, 2014

Having been deeply involved in radio frequency identification for nearly 20 years, I have worked with all frequency bands, and have spent 15 years in RFID standardization as well. Back when I started in 1995, RFID was known to only a very small community. Today, RFID, smart cards and Near Field Communication (NFC) are known to the general public through many applications, such as ticketing, ePassports and NFC payments. Two decades is a long time for any technology to evolve, and there have been many changes in RFID and its applications. Here are a few:

• As electronic devices, in general, have declined in size and price, so has RFID, especially in terms of reader hardware.

• More mainstream systems are using data collected by RFID, so the scale and complexity of connecting software has increased.

• Many more countries now regulate RFID in its numerous forms, and the regulations can differ greatly from one nation to the next.

• Twenty years ago, there were very few antenna forms. Today, there are hundreds—if not thousands—so the knowledge required to select the proper antenna for the job has also expanded greatly.

• Global standards have successfully enabled the worldwide growth of RFID usage, and that demands an understanding of how to implement systems in line with those standards.

• As active, passive and hybrid RFID technologies have progressed, there has been much more overlap among the different forms of RFID. An application requiring a range of less than 100 feet (30 meters) could potentially be served by passive or active RFID systems, so knowledge of both would be required to ensure correct selection.

All of the above means that selecting and implementing an RFID system is far broader and more complex than it was 20 years ago. And that means that anyone who implements an RFID solution needs a good grounding and knowledge of many aspects of the technology that might not have been considered in the past. Although I have been in the RFID industry for such a long time, there is still something new to learn every day.

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