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Enhanced software to ease 42 million baggage handling headaches

In 2007 42 million items of
baggage were delayed (some lost) at the inconvenience of air passengers. At an estimated cost of $3.8 million, this has been justifiably described as the industries 42 million headaches.

RFID has been prescribed by the industry as part of the solution.
To support this, Convergent Software Limited announces the release of a significant upgrade to its software designed to support the IATA RP 1740C RFID airline baggage handling application.

A version was released in January this year to be used predominantly as a stand-alonesoftware package designed to model the encoding on a tag and for diagnostic purposes.

The software was well received. An IATA spokesman said “We have used the Convergent Software Diagnostic Tool in order to gain visibility on what is encoded in airline RFID tags and verify compliance with RP1740C. This software gives us a stable reference and an ability to arbitrate when issues arise.” Feedback from the other early adopters has indicated another requirement; the need for better integration.

Paul Chartier, Managing Director of Convergent Software, said, “We listened to this feedback and have attempted to build a better product. The basic functions remain the same, but the enhanced software is easier to use and provides more flexible integration with business applications.”
The software now consists of three modules:

• The Template Builder designed to enable new models to be produced to support business applications and the availability of new RFID tag products.

• The RFID Data Builder to support different templates for different needs, for example for single leg flights or transfer flights, and as part of a Quality Assurance system to create correctly encoded RFID tags – every time.

• The RFID Data Doctor for use as part of a Quality Control system for tags created at other airports and to support low volume data capture applications.
The enhanced software supports improved interfaces, including Java APIs, XML and output reports in HTML format.

The software is a robust tool for airlines and airports to create correctly encoded tags – covering any of the optional data defined in RP1740C. It is also an excellent quality control tool to check on the encoding of tags generated by other software. As such it provides technology vendors with a tool to benchmark their encoding software.
Over recent months, new tags have come onto the market that support the encoding of the optional data defined in RP1740C. IATA's own analysis shows that this type of data can double the benefits of RFID for baggage handling.

Many vendors have so far only addressed the mandatory elements of RP1740C.
Convergent Software is interested in discussing with these vendors who now need to encode the optional data.

About Convergent Software Limited
Convergent Software Limited is working at the leading edge of developing encoding and decoding software for RFID applications.

Its directors have over 30 years experience with
AIDC technology and computing. Convergent Software is currently working with partners on developing encoding simulators, diagnostic software, and component tool sets for RFIDsystems.

The Managing Director of Convergent Software Limited, Paul Chartier, is Project Editor of ISO/IEC 15961 and ISO/IEC 15962 and other International Standards for RFID technology.

For more RFID-related information and details of the software, write to info@convergentsoftware.
co.uk and visit the company's website at http://www.convergent-software.co.uk

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