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RFID at ETech

RFID's are associated with credit cards, passports and inventory systems. However, they can also be used to add a proximity interaction to a service like entering a subway via a passkey. By linking yourself to an RFID tag you can let a device know who you are. If you add in a link to an online, personal profile the interaction can be very personal.

By having your information at the ready an RFID tag can give you a much simpler interaction with technology. It is very easy to conceptualize the possibilities, but to really get a feel for how RFIDs can effect your interaction It's an area that has to be explored physically.

That's why we are giving all of the attendees at ETech RFID tags that can be linked to their conference profiles. Activating your RFID tag and linking it to your profile will be completely opt-in, but with these tags you can interact with several projects we'll have at the conference, including:

  • Lensley's Photobooth
    Leonard Lin's new project is Lensley, a high-end photobooth with online photo-services integration. He's creating a special version just for ETech that will tag photos with your name and tweet that you've just had one taken.
  • Personal Calendar
    Radar's own Edd Dumbill is the fellow behind the profile APIs. He is going to create a project that will show attendees their personal calendar at a public kiosk.
  • ETech Prophet
    Josh and Tarikh of Uncommon Projects (they made the cool Yahoo! geo-bike) are adding an element of play to their project. They sent me a mail describing it as: "Essentially, we’d like to make an “Etech Prophet" a kind of mechanical turk idea (perhaps in another form factor)—you wave your RFID fob, it gesticulates, makes a noise and sends you your pithy fortune via twitter"
  • People Collector
    This is a favorite of mine. Business cards are a waste of time and paper. I just want the person's email address. Nothing else. The People Collector will be a mobile device that people can use to exchange contact information with other attendees. When you meet someone just wave your fob over their People Collector and a message will be sent to both of you. The People Collector will be built in Tom Igoe and Brian Jepson's Hands-On RFID Workshop on 3/9.
  • Pulse
    Attendees will be able to check-in to locations (this is all voluntary!). Over time the system will build up information about attendees through their actions and will be able to generate a heatmap for the hotel. This project is being built by Alexander Bisceglie and Nick Sears.

If you have an RFID-driven project that you want to bring to ETech, contact conference chair Brady Forrest on Twitter (@brady).

  • Sun Microsystems
  • Yahoo! Inc.
  • IEEE
  • Make magazine
  • Orange Labs