Attention Please! is an experiment taking place at the Box, an exhibtion space in FACT, Liverpool, UK.

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Audience members get an Attention Card as they enter the space. The card contains an RFID tag with a unique ID. The space houses three video screens playing lively video sequences that play with the notion of audience and performer: endless exercise, continual clapping, etc. The audience (participants, and perhaps also guinea pigs) are asked to actively "Pay Attention" by swiping their Attention Card. The more attention they wish to give to a particular video installation, the more they swipe their card.

Embedded code contained in the cards will affect the video as the attention is "registered." The text outputs from RFID readers are linked with Isadora, a video manipulation software that makes the video respond to attention.

The Attention Please installations react to the amount, and frequency of attention paid. If one video is getting a lot of attention, the other videos will react in a rather attention seeking way. The RFID attention cards may be implanted with random events, and the experiment will test how the audience responds to direct as well as random effects in the installation.

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The aim of the experiment is to explore the use of RFID in measuring audience attention and presence. The project members are looking for individuals and groups to participate in the experiment.

The Box, FACT, 88 Wood Street, Liverpool, L1 4DQ. 03 and 04 May 2pm - 6pm.

Images courtesy of Katie Lips.

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Visitors to Alton Towers in England could soon be tagged and tracked by cameras in a new system to video their entire day that could also tighten security.

Wearing (compulsory) RFID'd wrist bands, guests would be watched as they use the park and will be filmed on rides, which the creators say would also cut crime. Nothing new in a theme park that tags its visitors but the innovation here is that at the end of the day they would then be given the option to buy the footage in a personalised DVD.

The system called Your Day could also be introduced to Busch Gardens, in Florida and Disneyland Paris.

Via BBC News.

At the Interaction Design Institute Ivrea show during the Salone del Mobile, Vinay Venkatraman gave me some explanations about Sharer!, a very interesting project of service he had developed with James Tichenor.

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Sharer! connects borrowers and lenders in a same neighbourhood and allows them to earn money by securely renting out objects they seldom use to others in their area. Users can upload pictures, give description and browser other people object through a website. The system works in collaboration with the postal system and the postman is the point of contact to the lender. A series of secure electronic lockers are the transit point for the object and the borrower picks up the object and deposits it back there after the loan period is up. Besides, as each item lent has been fitted with an RFID tag, the owner can follow on a website the use of the object.

After looking at the type of objects people are willing to share, the project investigates interpersonal limitations and the possibility of sharing of objects within a local community.

Video scenario on the website.

At the Fabbrica del Vapore, via Procaccini, 4 Milano.
The show runs until April 21st (noon-5pm). Closed: April 16-17.

Nancy Nisbet, an artist who teaches visual art at the University of British Columbia, is about to embark on a six-month roadtrip to inform people about RFID's role in three areas: Surveillance and tracking; political and economic agreements like NAFTA; and personal and national identity

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She will mark all of her possessions with RFID tags, load them into a truck, drive across Canada, the U.S. and Mexico and trade away her tagged items to people she meets on the journey.

"The trades are more about a sharing experience, sharing the stories of the items; the generation of a community based on the idea of exchange," explained Nisbet. "I'm taking everything I own – my microwave, my bed, my books, the whole deal."

The tags are designed to be a conversation piece and the artist will record the stories of the people she meets and upload the audio clips to a database.

To help her with the project, Bartek Muszynski, designed a database solution that could accommodate voice, RFID and pictures of the items. The information is collected via voice- and RFID-enabled handhelds and will be updated regularly on the Exchange Project website.

The project will launch May 1, 2006 at the Richmond Art Gallery.
Via RFID in Japan < IT Business. More information in the PDF of the project (via networked_performance.)

The Japanese Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications is working on a system that allows for information gathering about a disaster area by sprinkling RFID sensor tags from the sky (possibly using helicopters.) The sensor tags would collect various information about a disaster -- perhaps most importantly, if anyone is alive. The tags are about several centimeters wide/high and equipped with heat, infrared, and vibration sensors.

Once sprinkled over the area, the tags would detect the heat from fire and the heat and vibration from survivors' body and send out the data through a mesh-like network. The ministry thinks that about 10,000 tags will be needed to cover an area as large as a big airport. They plan to finish their technology R&D by 2007.

Via RFID in Japan.

Researchers at the Amsterdam's Free University created an RFID chip infected with a virus to prove that RFID systems are vulnerable despite the extremely low memory capacity on the cheap chips (see their PDF, Digital vermin causes a real threat to RFID tag.)

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An infected RFID tag, which is read wirelessly when it passes through a scanning gate, can upset the database that processes the information on the chip, says the study by Melanie Rieback, Patrick Simpson, Bruno Crispo and Andrew Tanenbaum.

The team found that malicious code could be written to RFID tags. By replacing a tag's normal identification code with a written message, the researchers found they could exploit bugs in a computer connected to an RFID reader. This made it possible to spread a self-replicating computer worm capable of infecting other compatible, and rewritable, RFID tags.

"This is intended as a wake-up call. We ask the RFID industry to design systems that are secure," Tanenbaum explained.

Via CNN, New Scientist.
Image is not related to virus at all, it's an early prototype for the Zapped! Keychain RFID Detector. The Zapped! project, initiated by Preemptive Media, is not encouraging paranoia with Zapped!, but rather participation and preparation!

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