TIBCO Brings Context to RFID Data

With the TIBCO RFID Interchange infrastructure, the company says it can transform and route RFID data into back-end applications and then provide context around that data.

TIBCO Software, which has made a name for itself by providing integration capabilities to the financial industry, is adding new radio-frequency identification functionality to its portfolio.

TIBCO on Tuesday announced TIBCO RFID Interchange, an RFID infrastructure that transforms and routes RFID data into back-end applications and then provides context around that data.

Essentially, what RFID Interchange does is incorporate event data gleaned from edge devices—RFID printers and readers—into business processes. It then provides users with relevant information around the data.

"RFID events are similar in size of stock trades—theyre very small events with no intelligence in the information itself, [so] there is a need to provide context to the event through process or exceptions," said Dushyant Pandya, director of solutions at Palo Alto, Calif.-based TIBCO Software Inc.

"What we tried to do [is answer for our customers], How do I manage edge devices? How do I make it part of order fulfillment, so that when Target [Corp.] needs are slightly different than Wal-Mart [Stores Inc.s], I can support that? Thats the context we are working with."

Taking the supply-chain approach—where RFID has been applied most frequently to date—RFID Interchange supports EPC Globals ALE (Application Level Event) specifications, so that any application that is EPC-compliant is interoperable with Interchange.

At the same time, due in part to its work with the Nasdaq Stock Market, Interchange can send out data reads from edge devices in real-time streams to an application that can deal with it in an XML format, Pandya said.

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The RFID Interchange software also provides functionality for so-called slap-and-ship implementations, including information such as EPC tag commissioning and verification of pallet builds prior to shipping. Prebuilt templates around slap and ship also are provided.

TIBCO plans to expand its prebuilt template library to include more analytics around areas such as shipment verification and promotion monitoring.

"We want to leverage system integrators and move forward," said Pandya, who mentioned Hewlett-Packard Co. and Infosys International Inc. as SI partners.

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