Soctech seminar, Fall 2006
The past few years have seen a great deal of hype, both positive and negative, over the transformative potential of radio frequency identification technology (RFID). The goal of this seminar is to explore the broader legal and sociopolitical implications of RFID, entering into a discussion on privacy, security, and surveillance that has a solid technical and legal basis.
The seminar will be discussion-driven, each period led by a small group of seminar participants and/or including invited guest experts. We are also going to produce a seminar position paper that summarizes our thoughts on RFID and on the material we've covered. Our intent is to create a coherent and tangible to leave the academic community at large. The document will be collaboratively authored and all seminar participants will be required to contribute. That said, we intend this to be relatively low-investment spread over the course of the quarter.
Week 00 - Sep 25 - Course Introduction
Talk about the course basics and expectations.
Week 01 - Oct 02 - Basic Description
Read Want's The Magic of RFID and the Wikipedia entry on RFID. Also review some current research: near field communication, battery free sensing, interactions/apps, news, and blogs.
Week 02 - Oct 09
Week 03 - Oct 16
Week 04 - Oct 23
Week 05 - Oct 30
Week 06 - Nov 06
Week 07 - Nov 13
Week 08 - Nov 20
Week 09 - Nov 27
Week 10 - Dec 04
- Passports (trial programs in a few countries, e.g. US)
- supply-side tracking of inventory (e.g. walmart)
- gathering more detailed information about consumers (increasing information asymmetry between sellers/buyers)
- enabling buyers to gather more information about products (decreasing above information asymmetry)
Privacy & Surveillance concerns:
- Wisconsin law bans forcible implanting of RFID tag
- (old) proposed legislation in California that would attempt to protect consumer privacy
A few companies...