Agriculture
Fast-flying fungal spores
Chicken Eggs as Drug Factories
Hungry bug seeks hot meal
Amphibians
Tree Frogs
Poison Dart Frogs
Frogs and Toads
Animals
Fishy Sounds
Mouse Songs
Poor Devils
Behavior
Swedish Rhapsody
World’s largest lizard is venomous too
Brain cells take a break
Birds
Geese
Flamingos
Seagulls
Chemistry and Materials
The memory of a material
These gems make their own way
Atomic Drive
Computers
Getting in Touch with Touch
Secrets of an Ancient Computer
The science of disappearing
Dinosaurs and Fossils
Digging for Ancient DNA
Message in a dinosaur's teeth
Ancient Critter Caught Shedding Its Skin
E Learning Jamaica
2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
E Learning in Jamaica WIN PRIZES and try our Fun Animated Games
Results of GSAT are in schools this week
Earth
Rodent Rubbish as an Ice-Age Thermometer
The Rise of Yellowstone
Challenging the Forces of Nature
Environment
A Newspaper's Hidden Cost
Whale Watch
A Change in Leaf Color
Finding the Past
A Volcano's Deadly Ash
Little People Cause Big Surprise
Stone Age Sole Survivors
Fish
Basking Sharks
Swordfish
Cleaning Up Fish Farms
Food and Nutrition
A Taste for Cheese
Recipe for Health
Chocolate Rules
GSAT English Rules
Pronouns
Order of Adjectives
Adjectives and Adverbs
GSAT Exam Preparation Jamaica
E Learning in Jamaica WIN PRIZES and try our Fun Animated Games
How are students placed after passing the GSAT exam
March 21-22, 2013: Over 43,000 students will take the GSAT Exam
GSAT Exams Jamaica Scholarships
GSAT stars reap scholarship glory
2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
Results of GSAT are in schools this week
GSAT Mathematics
Losing with Heads or Tails
It's a Math World for Animals
Prime Time for Cicadas
Human Body
A Better Flu Shot
Gut Germs to the Rescue
Nature's Medicines
Invertebrates
Moths
Caterpillars
Scallops
Mammals
African Elephants
Ferrets
Moose
Parents
Children and Media
Choosing a Preschool: What to Consider
The Surprising Meaning and Benefits of Nursery Rhymes
Physics
Electric Backpack
Spin, Splat, and Scramble
Invisibility Ring
Plants
Tracking the Sun Improves Plant Pollen
Surprise Visitor
A Change in Leaf Color
Reptiles
Asp
Snakes
Cobras
Space and Astronomy
A Very Distant Planet Says "Cheese"
No Fat Stars
Ringing Saturn
Technology and Engineering
Dancing with Robots
Bionic Bacteria
Space Umbrellas to Shield Earth
The Parts of Speech
What is a Preposition?
Pronouns
Adjectives and Adverbs
Transportation
How to Fly Like a Bat
Ready, unplug, drive
Are Propellers Fin-ished?
Weather
Polar Ice Feels the Heat
The solar system's biggest junkyard
Catching Some Rays
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Beyond Bar Codes

In the future, your refrigerator might alert you when the milk has gone sour. At the grocery store, cashiers won't need to scan bar codes because products will provide the data on their own. And packages and letters will carry electronic tags that send messages about where they are. To make such a world possible, scientists are working on a technology called radiofrequency identification (RFID). An RFID tag is an electronic device that can be glued to cereal boxes, milk cartons, envelopes, and other objects. The tags store information and use radio signals to communicate with computers or sensors. RFID tags already exist in the form of "smart cards" that store dollar amounts for riders of some public transportation systems. RFID chips have also been implanted in animals to identify them and allow owners to find them if the animals get lost. In these cases, the tags are made of silicon, the material from which most computer chips are made. However, silicon electronic tags are too expensive to be used as widely as printed bar codes are. Now, scientists from two companies in Europe have independently taken steps toward speeding up the spread of RFID technology. They have created tags completely out of plastic materials with the right kinds of electronic properties to transmit radio signals efficiently. The methods for making plastic tags are much cheaper than those for making silicon tags. The tags produced by scientists from Philips Research Laboratories in Eindhoven in the Netherlands are made from a type of plastic called pentacene and transmit radio waves at a frequency of 13.56 megahertz. The tags produced by PolyIC in Erlangen, Germany, use a different type of plastic. Neither type of tag is perfect yet. The plastic tags are still expensive and tricky to manufacture, and their radio signals don't travel very far. It may be a few years yet before plastic RFIDs make their way into nearly all of our everyday objects. But when they do, there will be an amazing amount of information zooming invisibly around us.—E. Sohn

Beyond Bar Codes
Beyond Bar Codes








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