Friday, April 20, 2012
Methods Of Asset Management
How does one go about taking care of one's assets - one's worldly belongings? Well, the majority of people keep their money in a bank, put the jewellery in a strongbox and insure the remainder. But insurance is not really taking care of your possessions, is it? It is taking care of yourself so that you do not have replace them with your own money.
In the old days, and even now, I presume in some countries, you would employ a boy to watch over your sheep or cattle or bring them in at night for fear of lions, wolves or thieves. These were an early kind of security guard and indeed wealthy people had and frequently still do have private body guards.
What if you had a large office with a hundred laptop computers - laptops because people had to do field work as well? How would you keep track on all those? A car is another good example and construction site machinery is being stolen all the time even from under the noses of (or with the help of) private security firms.
So what can you do? Get dogs? That works usually, but they can be poisoned. Install video cameras and passive infra-red movement sensors connected to a control centre? That works and a lot of firms and private houses have it, but it is very expensive.
As a cheap alternative, the police were giving out free pens in the UK, which wrote in invisible ink. The idea was to put your postcode and house number. This ink became visible under a special type of light. That is fine if you have a suspect or found goods.
Bar codes are not practical, the pen is better. It all comes back to insurance or security.
However, there is another way that is becoming reasonably priced. The idea has been around for approximately 85 years, but it was too pricey to use on anything smaller than an airplane or a battle tank.
I am talking about radio frequency identification or RFID for short. The idea is the same one that aircraft have been using since during the Second World War - a transponder emits precoded information in answer to a demand from an RF reader.
Details regarding ownership and details of what the item is can be written to an RFID chip also known as a tag and the tag can then be taped inside the item that it is to safeguard.
There are two types of tag: the passive and the active. Passive tags will only respond if information is asked for by a reader, whereas an active tag is always broadcasting.
Many business people use RFID tagging to keep track of their assets. In the case of livestock, most cattle are tagged nowadays. Most big offices have their IT devices tagged as well and we all know that fashion stores have been tagging clothes for years, although maybe you did not know what that button was that they were removing at the checkout.
Individuals are already tagging their dogs, cats and cars and it will not be long before these asset management techniques will be used extensively at home as well. Insurance companies may demand on it.
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Posted by Staff at 7:51:00 AM