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RFID Bookshelf

New books examine RFID certification, produce packaging, library applications and the market at large.
By John Edwards
Jan 14, 2008—It's easy to forget just how greatly the user base for radio frequency identification technologies has widened over the past several years. RFID adopters now include manufacturers, retailers, shippers, warehouse operators, government agencies, veterinarians, theme park operators and scores of other enterprises. Then there are the growing number of applications, which seem limited in capabilities only by the imagination of RFID system designers. As a result, everything from shipping containers to retail products, pest traps, valuable artworks and even people are now being tagged.

Given RFID's ever-widening scope, it's not surprising that RFID book authors are turning their attention to new and more tightly focused topics. The days of books with titles such as Introduction to RFID and RFID Basics are now quickly receding into history. Most RFID books appearing over the past few months are designed to help readers gain specific types of knowledge, either for professional growth or to tackle a particular RFID project. That's a good sign, since it's proof of the technology's maturity and expansion into an almost endless number of business sectors.

Here's look at four recent books that, in their own ways, reflect the new state of both RFID and the RFID book market.

Mike Meyers' CompTIA RFID+ Certification Passport
By Mark Brown, Sam Patadia and Sanjiv Dua
McGraw Hill-Osborne, 2007
313 pages

As the RFID industry matures and the technology plays an increasingly important role in a variety of critical tasks, a growing number of businesses are seeking technicians who are CompTIA-certified. The trade group's certification validates that professionals who work with RFID technology have the ability to install, maintain, repair and troubleshoot RFID software and hardware.

Obtaining certification is, by no means, easy. Applicants, usually with 6 months to 2 years of RFID technology experience, must pass a 90-minute, 81-question exam covering technologies, standards, rules, applications and several other topic areas. It's these individuals that the Mike Meyers' CompTIA RFID+ Certification Passport aims to serve.

While the book carries Meyers' name as "series editor" (he's the author of several other CompTIA study guides), the text was actually written by Mark Brown, Sam Patadia and Sanjiv Dua, past or current executives at RFID4U, a company located in Sunnyvale, Calif., that specializes in vendor-neutral RFID learning solutions.
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