Thursday, October 09, 2003

Tomorrow's super bar codes create today's nervous Nellies
RFID tags could stay alive, sending out their information wherever they are. Companies might then be able to track things far beyond store shelves — perhaps learning which clothes you wear to work, and which you wear to a nightclub. Scarier, companies could, possibly, match your pants to you, and at least know if your pants visited a certain hotel.
But O'Shea says that kind of capability is way in the future. Given that, there's no way to know if worrying about RFID now is prudent, or if it's like worrying about dangerous light bulbs in the 1880s.
First thought: "...[T]hat kind of capability is way in the future." Yes, but the future can sneak up and bite you in the ass. Ever see Minority Report with their individual customer branding from eye scans? We already have various stores giving out "discount cards" that track purchases.

Second thought: Okay, sure we can write this capability off. Though if it comes about, there will be need for strong change and legislation. But with our quickly changing society is it prudent to wait for this? Isn't it better to be pro-active than reactive?

TOPIC: tech, business

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