Public library system, provincial agency among those trying out RFID

Currently, about 70 to 80 per cent of users take advantage of the self checkout capability, said Patricia Eastman of the Toronto Public Library at the recent 2006 Canadian RFID Conference.Between 2001 and 2005, Markham expanded from five libraries to six and the population base it serves increased to 268,835 from 208,615. Though many in various industries are waiting for price tags on RFID tags to come down, the Toronto public library decided to go ahead with its project, Eastman said, because otherwise it would always be waiting.

Besides, she said, libraries need tags that can last the lifetime of an item, so they will never be able to use five-cent tags on their books.

The Ontario Financial Services Commission’s Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Fund (MVACF) has also implemented an RFID File Tracking System.

The ministry has some 65,000 paper files on cases, about 6,500 of which are currently at its offices. Under the old chit file tracking system, files would easily get misplaced or misfiled and clerks would sometimes spend a day-and-a-half looking for them, said the ministry’s John Avgeris. Now, staff can find a file with the touch of a button.

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