Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. 24/7 Space News .

SciTechTalk: All hail the smart card
by Jim Algar
Washington DC (UPI) May 06, 2012

disclaimer: image is for illustration purposes only

Roland Moreno, the French inventor of smart card technology who died last week, once boasted he could stop any random person on a Paris street and find at least three examples of the technology in the person's pocket or purse.

Smart cards -- plastic cards embedded with an electronic circuit containing data that can be read and altered by a scanner -- have become so ubiquitous that Moreno could have safely made the same boast about London, Tokyo, New York or any other urban center.

From the commuter on a city mass transit system swiping his permanent rider's card over a sensor pad on a station turnstile to a shopper presenting a retailer's "gift card" to make a purchase to anyone in the world making a call on a SIM-card equipped cell phone, smart cards have exploded to the point where many of us easily exceed Moreno's expected three examples.

Credit and debit cards with "dumb" magnetic strips are being replaced by smart cards that can securely hold, maintain and update your account balance.

Medical identification cards can hold details of a person's health history, accessible by health care professionals when necessary.

In Europe, the insurance industry makes extensive use of them, and in Germany every citizen has a smart card for health insurance.

In the United States, several states use smart cards for applications ranging from department of motor vehicle licensing to electronic payments of government benefits.

Although many smart cards require insertion into a reader to be recognized and authorized, the use of contactless cards is growing for such high-traffic situations as mass transit.

The London Underground has its Oyster card, the Paris Metro system its Navigo and New York subway riders electronically load fare funds onto their MetroCards.

Multi-use smartcards are popping up as well.

In Hong Kong, a leader in utilizing smart card technology, people can use their Octopus cards not only for public transport but also to make electronic payments in stores, restaurants and parking garages.

In fact, the Octopus is rapidly becoming an all-in-one identification card used as access control in offices, apartment buildings and even schools.

A measure of its success -- and ubiquity -- is the fact that there are 19 million Octopus cards in circulation in a city with a population of 7 million, and more than 95 percent of residents between the ages of 10 to 65 use at least one Octopus card.

So if Roland Moreno were to reappear and stop you on the street, how many electronic circuits would he find you carrying about your person?

Cell phone? Bank card? Bus pass? Starbucks gift card?

So what's in your wallet?


Related Links
Space Technology News - Applications and Research

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

Apple iPad outmuscles Android in global tablet sales
San Francisco (AFP) May 3, 2012
Apple's iPad outmuscled its Android-powered tablet computer rivals in early 2012, in a global market suffering from post-holiday hangover, a survey showed Thursday. Global shipments of tablet devices and e-readers slumped 38.4 percent in the first three months of 2012 to 17.4 million, compared with a fourth quarter pumped up by the holiday gift-giving season, according to research firm IDC. ... read more

Perigee "Super Moon" On May 5-6

India's second moon mission Chandrayaan-2 to wait

European Google Lunar X Prize Teams Call For Science Payloads

Russia to Send Manned Mission to Moon by 2030

Mars Rover Opportunity Hits Paydirt At Endeavour

Ancient Volcanic Blast Provides More Evidence of Water on Early Mars

Opportunity Getting Ready To Leave Her Winter Perch

Mars Express - Former lakes and rivers in Acidalia Planitia

Boeing Completes Full Landing Test of Crew Space Transportation Spacecraft

How will the US biotechnology industry benefit from new patent laws?

Space -- the next frontier for Hillary Clinton?

Company to Create 'Gas Stations' in Space

China's Lunar Docking

Shenzhou-9 may take female astronaut to space

China to launch 100 satellites during 2011-15

Three for Tiangong

Space Station's Robotic Crew Member Designed to Look, Move and Work Like a Human

Expedition 30 Lands in Kazakhstan

Three astronauts to land from ISS Friday

Expedition 30 Crew Returning Home Friday

Air Force launches 2nd advanced satellite

A trio of Ariane 5 launchers are now at the Spaceport

United Launch Alliance Urges IAM Members to Vote in Favor of New Contract

ULA Launches Advanced Extremely High Frequency-2 Satellite to Orbit for the U.S. Air Force

Three Earthlike planets identified by Cornell astronomers

Some Stars Capture Rogue Planets

ALMA Reveals Workings of Nearby Planetary System

UF-led team uses new observatory to characterize low-mass planets orbiting nearby star

China firm seeks settlement in iPad row: lawyer

SciTechTalk: All hail the smart card

3-D pod like something from Star Trek

Experts write on the risks of low-level radiation

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement