This is happening quickly: soon clothing with RFID tags that let climate controllers know of your preferences in temperature and humidity will be a reality; floors that can monitor foot fall and your presence in the room could have advantages such as for the old — if they fall, the floor can sense it and notify the emergency services. In Japan, RFID tags are fitted in some items of clothing so that when an elderly person uses a pedestrian crossing, it keeps the light red for traffic for a few seconds longer.
RFID technology eliminates the necessity for line-of-sight scanning as the tag itself contains an antenna that can transmit the information to a receiver.
Here are some examples of where RFID technology is already being used:
■Hospitals insert a tag that contains an identification number which helps to locate the patient records
■Off shore oil rigs to locate staff quickly in emergency’s
■Smartdust (for massively distributed sensor networks)
One of the major limiting factors holding back this type of technology has been the lack of enough IP addresses, but with the arrival of IPV6, the next iteration of the Internet, this restriction will be removed. Now, potentially everything in the world could have an IP address. Given that RFID technology is becoming cheaper and more readily available, this is a movement that will not go away. It is the arrival of the Internet of Things. Obviously this may raise ethical and privacy issue.
Organizations are already struggling with the data they hold now and the phrase “we are data rich and information poor” has never been more correct. We are only going to get more data, but it is just a case of how we use it. So prepare yourself and make sure the data you hold works for you and gives you the insight to help you make quality business decisions.