Digital Magazine

Frontline Expo in Chicago to Address Supply-Chain Management, RFID Issues


WELLESLEY HILLS, MA, USA—Organizers of the Frontline Solutions Conference and Expo recently announced the keynote and general session speakers for the upcoming venue.

Advanstar Technology Group (a div. of Advanstar Communications) and AIM Global, the trade association for the automatic identification and mobility industry are sponsoring/organizing the three-day event and report industry-leading keynote speakers from the US Senate, AIM Global, the co-founders and architects of the Electronic Product Code (EPC) Standard, IBM, Texas Instruments, Intermec, and technology and business experts from China wil provide insight into the state of automatic identification (Auto-ID) industry.

"Frontline 2004 will offer expertise to corporate professionals in the industrial, retail, healthcare, transportation, government industries, will highlighting the new age of computing, including radio frequency identification (RFID), Auto-ID, mobile/wireless solutions, and global standards," states a release promoting the event.

Adds AIM Global president and co-chair of the Frontline Expo and Conference Dan Mullen, "To comply with industry and government standards and to create more streamlined business operations, companies must justify an increase in information technology (IT) budgets to implement smarter supply-chain management strategies."

Keynotes Highlight New Age of Computing
On Monday, September 13, Kevin Ashton, former executive director and co-founder of the Auto-ID Center and the current VP of marketing and business development of ThingMagic, kicks off the event with the opening day keynote presentation.

From 9-10am, Ashton will present "The Sensor Age, a discussion about computers that will be woven into the fabric of our clothes and lives, where everything we buy and own will communicate, and where electronic devices will be as pervasive as printing and paper," state the organizers.

In addition, a special guest in the opening session will be the US (N. Dakota) Senator Byron L. Dorgan, who will provide his observations from serving as the ranking member of the Subcommittee on Competition, Foreign Commerce, and Infrastructure.

Dr. Sanjay Sarma, former research director and associate professor of mechanical engineering at MIT, co-founder of the Auto-ID Center and the current chief technology officer and board member of OATSystems, opens the event for its second day on September 14 at 9 am. Dr. Sarma will address the early challenges of achieving return on investment (ROI), increasing inventory turns, reducing shrinkage and counterfeit, and increasing on-shelf availability at each stage of RFID deployments.

Dr. Sarma will also discuss approaches for obtaining the business benefits of RFID over time that will justify and fund each phase of projects.

General sessions for Frontline 2004 include:

  • Monday, September 13

  • What a Difference a Year Makes, 10:15-11:15 am
    Chris Clauss, worldwide Auto-ID leader, IBM, and Sean Campbell, partner and global RFID leader, Distribution Sector, IBM
    Clauss and Campbell will discuss the development of the EPC Network, first year struggles, and lessons learned this past year from implementing RFID within existing supply chains.
  • Auto-ID, RFID, and Mobility—Separating Fact from FUD, 1:30-2:30 pm
    Dan Mullen, president AIM Global, and Tom Miller, president of Intermec and chairman of the board for AIM Global
    Hear from global industry leaders from the association for automatic identification and mobility as they discuss the status of the Automatic Identification and Data Capture industry and what to look forward to in 2005.

  • Tuesday, September 14

  • Billions and Billions: What Is the Status of Chip Production?, 10:15-11:15 am
    Moderator: Tom Coyle, senior VP, IconNicholson, LLC; Panelists: Alien Technology, Matrics, Philips Semiconductor, and Texas Instruments
    In this session, Coyle leads a panel of the world's leading hardware manufacturers as they discuss the current issues including: when will cheap chips be available; what is the status of production; and will tags meeting standards be available by 2005 mandate deadlines?
  • AIDC in China: An Update from the World's Fastest Growing Economy, 1:30-2:30 pm
    Edward Zeng, founder and chief executive officer, Sparkice, Inc.
    Zeng will present an overview of the status of RFID and Auto-ID adoption and standards in China and discuss how these technologies are being used to improve the supply-chain performance of export enterprises and to facilitate domestic business growth.

  • Wednesday, September 15

  • RFID and the Bumps in the Road, 10-11 am
    RFID Experts Group (REG)
    Moderator: Craig Harmon, president, QED Systems; Panelists: Michelin, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Paxar, Siemens Dematic, and Zebra Technologies
    Many organizations claim to be 100 percent compliant with published standards. However, the reality is that there is still a lot of work to be done. This panel of REG members will identify the problems and solutions of real-world RFID issues associated with multiple readers, tag placement, globally unique data, safety and regulations, and unreadable tags.

For registration and exhibition information, visit frontlineexpo.com.

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