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Get Started with RFID Development in Java

Using RFID Anywhere, you can build a highly customized Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) application or service that meets your specific needs.

ybase iAnywhere's RFID Anywhere is a middleware software platform built on the .NET platform that simplifies every phase of radio frequency identification (RFID) projects, including development, deployment, and ultimately the management of highly distributed, multi-site networks. RFID Anywhere manages the interfaces with RFID readers and printers, as well as bar code equipment, sensors, and controllers. As a result, developers can focus on writing business logic, not low-level device or network interfaces.

It provides a service-oriented architecture where multiple applications can consume processed data, letting organizations get the most out of RFID investments by allowing them to leverage the same RFID hardware to fuel any number of departmental or enterprise applications.

RFID Anywhere supports a broad array of readers, tag formats, and protocols, and can be deployed to the edge of the network, reducing the flow of data across the network and enabling real-time responses to RFID event data.

RFID Anywhere insulates developers and systems integrators from the wide variety of low-level hardware interfaces, industry standards, and protocols in the RFID space. Processed data can easily be integrated into enterprise applications through a variety of transports. Its plug-and-play architecture not only provides support for current hardware, standards, and protocols, but makes it easy to support new standards when they emerge without requiring a new product release or complete reinstall.

Developers and systems integrators will benefit from included tools, centralized network management, and easy to use interfaces, allowing for easy development and maintenance of powerful RFID solutions.

Obtaining RFID Anywhere
You can purchase RFID Anywhere at. http://eshop.sybase.com/eshop. Alternatively, to receive the developer's edition of RFID Anywhere, you can register to become an RFID Anywhere Insider. Finally, you can find general information for RFID Anywhere at http://www.ianywhere.com/products/rfid_anywhere.html.

The Sample Application
Because of RFID Anywhere's simulation environment, you don't need to have RFID hardware to run the sample application or experiment with RFID technology.
I've modified the Enterprise Application used in the Inventory Tracker demo supplied with the RFID Anywhere toolkit to provide a demo application for this article. The demo takes advantage of the simulation environment of RFID Anywhere to simulate actual RFID device events, so you don't need to have RFID hardware to run the demo or experiment with RFID technology.

The Inventory Tracker demo retrieves business-context information from a "secondary" XML file, SecondarySource.xml, which contains mappings of raw tag data to actual manufacturer and product names. The Inventory Tracker demo reads the secondary source file and provides the mapped results to the Enterprise Application in the form of custom XML reports. The Enterprise Application demo listens on port 10001 for these reports to be transmitted via the TCP messaging connector.

Before you build the sample RFID application, though, you should understand what the various RFID Anywhere components are, what they do, and how they work together to provide a complete foundation upon which you can build applications.

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