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Using RFID and Wi-Fi to Track Students 183

Posted by Zonk
from the scurry-little-ants-scurry dept.
An anonymous reader writes "The BBC reports on a proposal to use RFID and wi-fi to track students wherever they go on campus: 'Battery-powered RFID tags are placed on an asset and they communicate with at least three wireless access points inside the network to triangulate a location.' At The Wireless Event in London, 'Marcus Birkl, head of wireless at Siemens, said location tracking of assets or people was one of the biggest incentives for companies, hospitals and education institutions to roll out wi-fi networks.' The article points out that integration of RFID and wi-fi raises the possibility that RFID can be used for remote surveillance."
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Using RFID and Wi-Fi to Track Students

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  • by Richard McBeef (1092673) on Friday May 25, 2007 @03:57PM (#19274919)
    Seriously though, I can't remember Slashdot ever linking directly to the printable page. I wish they'd do it more often.
  • by BHearsum (325814) on Friday May 25, 2007 @03:58PM (#19274937) Homepage
    Angelo Lamme, from Motorola, said tracking students on a campus could help during a fire or an emergency.

    And how exactly are you going to access the data if the school is on fire? I cannot think of any legitimate use for this.
    • by Timesprout (579035) on Friday May 25, 2007 @04:06PM (#19275075)
      Maybe, but it will look good on the tracking screen when all the little dots indicating tags start blinking out.
    • Adding to your thought: Unless the device is virtually inseperable from the student, what's to say that it isn't left behind during evacuation, or conversely, the student who doesn't evacuate happened to leave their backpack containing it back in their dorm room for the day?

      Implant it or strap it to their ankle...otherwise the error rate in tracking the actual location of the individual becomes pretty high.

      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        Easy...we'll just wear cool comm-badges

        Wait...what do you mean comm-badges aren't cool, and you don't want to wear one?

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by mabhatter654 (561290)
        notice that schools (even elementary) have become crazy about all the students displaying their school IDs... they're planning ahead.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by malsdavis (542216)
      "I cannot think of any legitimate use for this."

      You obviously cannot think very hard then. Lecture attendance registers (and alerting a student if they are about to miss a lecture), finding lost patients (apparently a common problem, especially with mentally unstable patients), Student security, efficient computers/lighting (i.e. computers/lights turn on/off when someone enters/exits room), computer account security and log-on convenience.

      There are probably many more, but they're the ones I've come up with
      • by Rakishi (759894) on Friday May 25, 2007 @05:34PM (#19276193)

        Lecture attendance registers (and alerting a student if they are about to miss a lecture)
        Kickass, now all you need to do is get a friend to bring your tag. Purely accidentally too, of course, if anyone were to ask. Then you get the fun of people not getting detected correctly and students having to spend 2 months arguing that they didn't miss all the classes (and so didn't fail the class). The prof is of course on a sabbatical (and didn't really pay attention to who attended anyways) and the TAs slept through the lectures. And since the system can never lie or be wrong the student must be lying.

        Student security
        Such as? Oh no, I'm in a building that isn't my department so I can use the bathroom, better call the cops.

        efficient computers/lighting (i.e. computers/lights turn on/off when someone enters/exits room)
        So the school has never heard of motion detectors I take it? Joy, now I'll need to bring a flashlight with me for all the times this more complex thus error prone detection system fails.

        computer account security and log-on convenience.
        ...unless the tag is embedded in your arm you gain no security benefit unless there is a password as well. Then you gain no convenience benefit. Not to mention that you'd need a detector next to each computer as a tracking system (that is error prone likely) would be far from "Secure."
        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by bdjacobson (1094909)

          Lecture attendance registers (and alerting a student if they are about to miss a lecture)

          Kickass, now all you need to do is get a friend to bring your tag. Purely accidentally too, of course, if anyone were to ask. Then you get the fun of people not getting detected correctly and students having to spend 2 months arguing that they didn't miss all the classes (and so didn't fail the class). The prof is of course on a sabbatical (and didn't really pay attention to who attended anyways) and the TAs slept through the lectures. And since the system can never lie or be wrong the student must be lying.

          Student security

          Such as? Oh no, I'm in a building that isn't my department so I can use the bathroom, better call the cops.

          efficient computers/lighting (i.e. computers/lights turn on/off when someone enters/exits room)

          So the school has never heard of motion detectors I take it? Joy, now I'll need to bring a flashlight with me for all the times this more complex thus error prone detection system fails.

          computer account security and log-on convenience.

          ...unless the tag is embedded in your arm you gain no security benefit unless there is a password as well. Then you gain no convenience benefit. Not to mention that you'd need a detector next to each computer as a tracking system (that is error prone likely) would be far from "Secure."

          Couldn't have said it better myself. Fuck that shit. No really. I'm paying $30k/year [gatech.edu] I'm going to go to lecture if I want and skip if I want. If your class is worth going to then you shouldn't need attendance grades. Besides, the point is that they learn the material. If I can learn the material fine without your help, why do I have to waste time in class for a stupid check off in your gradebook? The serious teachers here don't bother with that-- they trust us to make the right decision. For the most part

      • by timholman (71886)

        Lecture attendance registers (and alerting a student if they are about to miss a lecture)

        Very few professors bother to take roll. Personally I don't care if students attend or not, as long as they do the work and show up for exams. They're adults and the choice is theirs.

        But I can tell you who would care - the parents. One question I often pose to students: "If this classroom had a webcam that allowed your parents to see if you were attending class, how many of you think your parents would use it?" Typ

    • To access the data when the school is on fire, use a campus building that isn't (yet) on fire. Colleges usually have more than one building.
      Getting those people whom the data corresponds to out of the burning building will be somewhat harder, esp. if the WiFi trackers aren't fireproof.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by DragonWriter (970822)

      And how exactly are you going to access the data if the school is on fire?

      Wirelessly, presumably.

      Of course, your WAPs need to a little more sophisticated than most, and have local batteries, and be resistant to particulates (so smoke doesn't kill them easily; fire, of course, will), and the network has to extend out from the buildings a bit so it covers where your normal evac and emergency access sites would be. You then just need a portable terminal, even a PDA, that can connect to the network and gather

    • by symbolic (11752)
      I believe you are absolutely right. Seriously right. All one has to do is remember - just how many students have we lost to unexpected school fires over the years? This isn't a problem. Period. They're *inventing* a problem that has never existed in order to justify their insanity.
  • Umm, Stalking. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Irvu (248207) on Friday May 25, 2007 @04:00PM (#19274973)
    Once each student is equipped with a WiFi tag do theyr really imagine that only the school will have this info. Forget the overzealous parent that wants 24/7 monitoring. What about the creepy stalker who wants to follow the girl of his dreams? What about the kidnapper who wants to watch his target?

    Forget claims about 'encryption' (it's a unique ID who cares what it "means") or limitations on distance, readers have already shown success at distances far beyond those claimed.

    What about the paedophile who wants to track that one kid...

     
    • by Normal Dan (1053064) on Friday May 25, 2007 @04:10PM (#19275123)

      What about the creepy stalker who wants to follow the girl of his dreams?
      Hrmmm... Good point. On second thought, I support RFID tags for students.
    • Re:Umm, Stalking. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Fulcrum of Evil (560260) on Friday May 25, 2007 @04:12PM (#19275167)

      What about the paedophile who wants to track that one kid...

      What's he going to hang around a college for?

    • Re:Umm, Stalking. (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Chris Burke (6130) on Friday May 25, 2007 @04:13PM (#19275179) Homepage
      Once each student is equipped with a WiFi tag do theyr really imagine that only the school will have this info. Forget the overzealous parent that wants 24/7 monitoring. What about the creepy stalker who wants to follow the girl of his dreams?

      Exactly, and does it even matter if only the "school" has it? Like nobody bad ever worked in a school. So the Creepy Vice Principle can see that this one girl is alone in the bathroom in the middle of a class session. Great.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Cemu (968469)
      Imagine. Someone could peer through the logs and see when/where a person is by themselves late at night on a regular basis. Most criminals are opportunistic and there's no better opportunity than what this would create.

      Are there mod points for creepy?
      • by Wingnut64 (446382)

        Someone could peer through the logs and see when/where a person is by themselves late at night on a regular basis.
        Or better yet, construct an elaborate web of blackmail by seeing which *2* people are together late at night on a regular basis...
  • by L. VeGas (580015) on Friday May 25, 2007 @04:01PM (#19274991) Homepage Journal
    Thus rendering Harry's invisibility cloak useless.
    • by u-bend (1095729)
      Offtopic? C'mon, it was funny. A little levity here please before we go back to trying to think of how this won't be misused in a college setting.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by PilotDvr (940016)
      Actually, it is how the Marauder's Map works
  • no practical reason for this whatsoever.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by PilotDvr (940016)
      Tell that to the parents of the Purdue University kid who was dead in a utility closet for a week or more before they found him.
  • Students = Assets? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by phalse phace (454635) on Friday May 25, 2007 @04:03PM (#19275001)
    "Battery-powered RFID tags are placed on an asset and they communicate with at least three wireless access points inside the network to triangulate a location."

    So students are now assets?

    • So students are now assets?

      I think it was a typo. They meant they want to track student asses. You know, the jackasses who get drunk and trash parts of the campus or the ones who think "Animal House" was a video student manual on how to act when at college.

      • Are the colleges going to extend the tracking systems to the off-campus fraternities, then?
        Or do British colleges have off-campus fraternities?
      • by RESPAWN (153636)

        I think it was a typo. They meant they want to track student asses. You know, the jackasses who get drunk and trash parts of the campus or the ones who think "Animal House" was a video student manual on how to act when at college.
        Clearly you didn't have enough fun in college. ;)
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      So students are now assets?

      On a balance sheet? Yes. Or possibly liabilties. But they are one or the other.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by The tECHIDNA (677584) *

      So students are now assets?

      Well, when you consider the money students (and by extension, their parents) bring in to the univ through alumni funds, sports tickets, targeted advertising [mtvu.com], the college loan bribery scandal [google.com], and loan companies profiting [msn.com] off of said bribery scandal...

      why yes, yes they are.
      Might as well have the asset tags...er, student ID's have tracking capabilities so those carbon-based ATMs don't get away.

    • by tcgroat (666085)
      Students aren't assets, but their tuition payments, textbook purchases and "student fees" certainly are. Heaven forbid that anyone but a paying customer sets foot on campus!
  • And college kids will bleat all the way through WiFi checkpoints.
  • stupid (Score:3, Insightful)

    by f1055man (951955) on Friday May 25, 2007 @04:05PM (#19275047)
    This makes sense for hospitals and that's about it. Everywhere else it's a liability.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by phalse phace (454635)
      "This makes sense for hospitals...."

      and maybe even within a large prison
    • Something like this might be useful for monitoring criminals/sex offenders that are on parole, in lieu of GPS. But you're right. It's really only good for someone who has lost their normal level of privacy, either to infirmity or criminal reasons.

    • by LWATCDR (28044)
      Actually it make is a good idea in lots of environments.
      Think of an Oil Refinery. I will use a fire as an example since so many people don't get how this could be helpful.
      A fire breaks out in part of the refinery. When the fire fighters get there they would know where everybody that got clear of the fire was instantly because there tags would be near safe and functions base stations. Anyone that might still be in danger you would have at least their last known location to start looking for them.

      An other exa
      • by Dunbal (464142)
        A fire breaks out in part of the refinery.

              Where can I get some of this fire that doesn't damage WiFi equipment/cables/sensors/computers?
        • by Belial6 (794905)
          Well, given that the WiFi equipment that used in the example is in a part of the refinery that is not on fire, I would say you probably have all the tools in your home to make some of it yourself.
          • by Dunbal (464142)
            given that the WiFi equipment that used in the example is in a part of the refinery that is not on fire

                  Do all fires respect the WiFi system to make sure it still maintains 100% functionality?
            • by Belial6 (794905)
              Yes. When the fire is no where near the WiFi equipment, all fire will allow WiFi to continue working. I would say 'make sure' is too strong of words. But I have yet to see a fire that is no where near WiFi equipment, interfere with said equipment.
        • by LWATCDR (28044)
          "Where can I get some of this fire that doesn't damage WiFi equipment/cables/sensors/computers?"
          That is the thing you don't need any for my example to work.
          When the fire breaks out people do evacuate the wifi equipment will still be functioning so they will see everybody that is clear of the fire. So you know who is safe in a fraction of a second. So in a few minutes you would know that Bill, Fred, and Joe are missing.
          Once you know who is safe you can go back to the records and see where the missing people
  • by commodoresloat (172735) * on Friday May 25, 2007 @04:07PM (#19275083)
    Angelo Lamme, from Motorola, said tracking students on a campus could help during a fire or an emergency.

    Sure; during a fire or emergency sounds like a great time to be snooping around to see where particular students are. Fire alarms seem to be much more helpful than tracking techniques for real emergencies; surveillance technology is much more likely to be used during times of "business as usual," and generally not during times when most people are running around screaming for their lives.
    BR>Meanwhile, I can see this sort of technology having great applications during "business as usual" times for creepy security guards who want to see what that hot blonde chick does after her chemistry class... Especially for the peeping tom or stalker types who want to make sure they're walking by the right dorm room window when she gets out of the shower.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by dysfunct (940221) *

      surveillance technology is much more likely to be used during times of "business as usual," and generally not during times when most people are running around screaming for their lives.

      That raises another interesting point. According to TFA the tags will require a power source and software that can interact with WLAN.

      This means that those chips would be intelligent enough to detect some kind of emergency flag embedded into the normal signal and only then actively communicate with the access points, so tha

  • What is the saying? "Give me safety or give me death!" Who needs freedom when you have someone in a position of authority telling you where you can and cannot go, what you can and cannot say, or what you can and cannot do. If it isn't broken, don't fix it. Do not assume there is a problem, i.e. safety of students, when there isn't.
  • by zappepcs (820751) on Friday May 25, 2007 @04:13PM (#19275175) Journal
    that there are typically 5 people sitting in the same chair at Monday morning 8:00 a.m. Calculus classes....
  • by Radon360 (951529) on Friday May 25, 2007 @04:14PM (#19275185)

    So I am gathering that the "brains" on these tags can handle all the handshaking involved with an 802.11(b/g/n) link, including whatever parts of TCP/IP are needed to pass the signal strength data back to the servers? Sounds to me that this is a little bit more involved than just an RFID tag, more like a simple Wi-Fi enabled device that connnects and reports back signal strengths/timing etc. A bit more complex than a chip tied to a small antenna patch (and battery for transmit signal amplification).

    • Just a guess, since I didn't RTFA, but maybe the RFID scanner would be part of the WiFi hotspot.

      Scanner detects tag, reports to server thru WiFi.

      • by Radon360 (951529)

        I suppose that's one possibility. That would make for a lot of scanners in one area puking data at an AP. The article wasn't all that technical, anyway, so it's a matter of speculation on how they would plan to make it work at this point. For all we know, some non-technical type strung together a couple of buzzword technologies to make up this idea without knowing anything about the technical aspects of it. If that were the case, I'm surprised that they didn't find a way to weave nanotechnology into

  • How would you make sure that every student has his tag on him at all times? For this to work, the tag can't be larger than a credit card. It'd presumably be integrated with the student ID. Even then, what's to prevent the student from carrying the card in a tin foil wallet? And what if the battery runs out?

    Apart from the privacy problems, I'd say this is one impractical proposal, at least for tracking people.

    For tracking equipment in a hospital, it might work. Even then, in most wards the nurses will know w
    • by camperslo (704715)
      How would you make sure that every student has his tag on him at all times?

      Say welcome to mandatory flu shots...
    • by drinkypoo (153816)

      How would you make sure that every student has his tag on him at all times?

      Ever see one of those pet doors that only opens for YOUR pet, based on a collar-mounted radio beacon?

      You simply won't be able to pass through a door without one, and you can replace the doors with those cage-things that rotate and only let you pass one way.

    • by Rick17JJ (744063)

      There are several RFID blocking wallets already on the market. Will students be allowed to block the signal if they don't want to be tracked? This reminds me of those some of those PBS nature shows where a wildlife biologist has tagged a animal with a radio collar and is tracking its movements by radio. It also reminds me of the book "1984." [gutenberg.net.au]

  • Hmm... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by kabocox (199019) on Friday May 25, 2007 @04:27PM (#19275357)
    If I was the evil overlord incharge of that school district with the money to implement this plan, I'd start first with each schools' library books and then to all the school books. (The school books are assigned to a student, whose parents are responsible for replacement if the books are lost/damaged so you get 5-7 RFID tags depending on how many school owned books are assigned to each student.) After that, I'd make it a little change in the school ID cards that are redone at the beginning of each school year. I could have all the ID cards with passive RFID chips without informing anyone until my evil parenting OS backend webserver was ready to handle all the parents and slashdotters that will be watching their dots move around.

    For student privacy/safety, I'd not make it a "public" website. You'd have to have a Parent ID/login before you could look up where your kid has been all day and maybe associated dots/students around them. The teachers and maybe staff would have access, but the general public should only see lots of dots (without ID numbers) moving around just cause it looks neat.

    After 2-3 generations of this "safely" happening, then I'd try to expand the program to all schools, or the entire state's new DLs.

    Well, if I were an evil overlord with any power...
  • by RingDev (879105) on Friday May 25, 2007 @04:29PM (#19275387) Homepage Journal
    I went to a seminar a few years ago that had some head from Cisco speaking. He was showing off their latest wireless system (it was some cool stuff!) and one of the features it had was this RFID location system. He brought up an app that had a map of a floor of one of the buildings in their campus. He showed us, in live time, as one of the employees dot's left their office and walked to the bathroom. From half the country away he could see where everyone was. The location tag I believe was built into their access keys, so they were pretty much always on them.

    Great technology for a hospital, prison, and maybe a handful of other specific situations. But a school? It was scary enough seeing it in action for an office building.

    -Rick
    • [blanch]
      Why must they include bathrooms in the RFID coverage? Is there to be no privacy?
      Oh, wait...never mind.
      • by RingDev (879105)
        I don't think it was intended. ;) He was showing off their latest wifi gear and it had the ability to determine weak signal points and boost signals in certain directions. They had like 6 antenas on the floor and they automatically configured themselves to maximize coverage. The bathroom just happened to be in side the coverage area.

        -Rick
  • by dtjohnson (102237) on Friday May 25, 2007 @04:33PM (#19275417)
    The government could implant an rfid device in every one of its citizens, beginning at birth, and then construct a tracking infrastructure and database system that would let them see the physical location of every person in real time and the historical location by consulting the database. Imagine what this would mean:

    1) Crime would be ended since, after any crime, the police would only have to log onto the computer to see who was present at the moment the crime was comitted.

    2) Population control would be easy since whenever a boy dot was in very close proximity, say less than 1 inche, to a girl dot, a little pink heart could start flashing on the screen and the government watchperson could administer a little remote-controlled voltage zap to the two parties to ruin the amore of the moment.

    3) Transportation problems...a thing of the past...since you would need a permit to commute over road xyz which would specify your permitted travel times.

    4) Money? Who would need it? Your id tag would just be automatically billed for whatever. If you didn't pay...you could just be confined to whereever and monitored for compliance. No need for prisons, either, for anyone but the most dangerous.

    5) Adultery, stalking, speeding, trespassing, etc. are examples of a few of the many crimes that would be obsoleted due to their degree of difficulty and the ease with which transgressors would be identified.

    Okay, maybe we are not quite ready for all of this yet, at least the democrats, but the republicans and Attorney General Gonzales would be down with it, no doubt. Also, what about North Korea, Venezueala, Cuba, China, or Saudi Arabia? They would be fine with this stuff, no doubt. And we all will be eventually, like it or not.
  • by Radon360 (951529) on Friday May 25, 2007 @04:34PM (#19275429)

    Instead, instal micro cell sites and track using their cell phones. They have a reason to take their cell phone with them (not just a useless tracking tag), you don't have the roll out cost of issuing these tags, and to make this work, you're going to have to put up a heckuva lot of new Wi-Fi APs to do any sort of triangulation, anyway. Why not use cell phone signals on maybe several dozen micro cell sites on campus instead? As a bonus, handled call volume increases and you can get the cell companies to help subsidize the cost...and manage the user database, too.

    Then again, why in hell do we really need to monitor student movement so closely in the first place?

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Catbeller (118204)
      All cell phones made and sold after 2005 have GPS trackers built-in, and can report their location to the meter to the carrier, second-by-second, whether the owner wishes it so or no. Little known fact: that tracking data is available to third parties for a fee. Anyone with a newer phone is already part of the New World Order, as George's dad named it. Just a matter of flicking a software switch in the phone, so opting out via the phone's menu isn't worth spit.

      And NO, using the cell towers to triangulate is
  • How about a reverse fake ap [blackalchemy.to] MAC address generator/packet injector whereas instead of Fake AP's, fake MAC addresses were injected into the wifi routers...... Wait no... One million more students detected may make them call in the military...
  • Will we ever fight back? Or will we have absolutely no freedom if we are employed or are enrolled in private colleges? What if its a state school?

  • by bcrowell (177657) on Friday May 25, 2007 @04:54PM (#19275689) Homepage

    I was born in 1966. A couple of big things were different then:

    1. The obesity epidemic hadn't started.
    2. The mass hysteria about kids' safety (child molesters, etc.) hadn't started.

    Recently we got a mailing from our kids' principal about walking to and from school. It was survey about how many kids walked, but it came with a letter from the principal basically implying that any parent who let their kids walk was a bad parent, because it was so unsafe. This is the same principal who has instituted rules about which direction the kids can swing on the playground swings. The previous principal organized a bike rodeo for kids to improve their skills on bikes, and kids who worked on their skills, and demonstrated them at the bike rodeo, got the privilege of using the bike racks. My older kid passed, but then the new principal came in, and the whole idea suddenly went away. I do not know of any kid at this school who has ever gotten hurt walking or cycling to or from school. I do know of one kid who got hit by a car after school, because her parents were sitting, double-parked, in their air-conditioned SUV on the other side of the street, beckoning her to run across the street and get in.

    When I was a kid, I started walking to the babysitter's house after school when I was in kindergarten. Nobody thought that was unusual. This was in an urban environment (Albany, CA). I learned to look both ways before crossing the street, and to cross on the green. No biggie.

    Today, it seems like most affluent kids' existence consists of being shuttled back and forth in their mom's SUV from one air-conditioned building to another. And we wonder why the obesity epidemic is happening.

    Psychologically, people like to have the illusion of control. For instance, studies have shown that drivers consistently overestimate their own ability to deal with an emergency. When it comes to kids, parents want to have the illusion of safety that comes from having their kid carry a cell phone all the time. Radio-tracking your kids is just the latest instance of this kind of mass hysteria.

    • by drinkypoo (153816)

      Today, it seems like most affluent kids' existence consists of being shuttled back and forth in their mom's SUV from one air-conditioned building to another. And we wonder why the obesity epidemic is happening.

      The obesity epidemic coincides with the adoption of a carbohydrate-based food pyramid, and the subsequent rise in the consumption of processed and packaged foods, which have traditionally been stuffed full of sugar.

      Youth/infant diabetes was virtually unheard of in this country before that, as well.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by mpe (36238)
      The mass hysteria about kids' safety (child molesters, etc.) hadn't started.

      IIRC, even with this hysteria, the number of actual cases has been fairly static for decades.

      I do not know of any kid at this school who has ever gotten hurt walking or cycling to or from school. I do know of one kid who got hit by a car after school, because her parents were sitting, double-parked, in their air-conditioned SUV on the other side of the street, beckoning her to run across the street and get in.

      Whereas the numbe
  • by joe 155 (937621) on Friday May 25, 2007 @05:08PM (#19275871) Journal
    ...I go to the University of Warwick, and we have this already. There are RFID chips in our library cards which we have to use to go into the library, take out books, the learning grid (its a 24/7 mini-library and work area that they've packed full of buzz-words...) or sports center. They are also used to give variable access to departmental buildings when they are not "open", as it were. For example if you are a statistics student you can get into that departments building at 3 in the morning but you can't get into social sciences.

    These are passive and so give me little reason to be worried (although I do have a sheet of metal in my wallet anyway, just in case). They also provide pretty much all the benefits of an active chip without as much of a feeling that they are doing some weird prying into your life.

    Having said that this system didn't stop my friend from having £180 charged to him because someone stole his library card and took out 10 books on it... having active cards could just make that problem far worse -
    Security: "It seems the fire was started by you, Scott"
    Scott: "But I was at home on my own all night"
    Security: "Tell it to the police, and in the mean time you've been kicked out - read the University ToS, we can kick you out whenever for whatever reason"
    Scott: "Bugger..."

  • "Dude, are you unscannable?!"
  • Damn, you guys know how to spin YRO articles to make everything sound apocalyptic and awful. What exactly do you think this technology is meant to be used for? Do you think that university administrators have such a vested interest in vending machine habits and profit maximization that they want to data mine their own students? Do you think they really care when and how often you go to the bathroom?

    Slashdot seems to have missed the boat on the notion of Ubiquitous Computing.

    Wikipedia article [wikipedia.org]
    CMU's Aura Proje [cmu.edu]
  • Why students only? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Mathness (145187)

    Angelo Lamme, from Motorola, said tracking students on a campus could help during a fire or an emergency.
    Why students only? If this truely is the reason, everybody on campus should have one. Anything less (or at all really) is a attempt at control over others.
  • That's the water approaching full boil, silly frogs.

From Sharp minds come... pointed heads. -- Bryan Sparrowhawk

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