5.1 Given a scenario, predict the performance of a given frequency and power (active/passive) as it relates to read distance, write distance, tag response time, storage capacity
5.2 Summarize how hardware selection affects performance (may use scenarios)
Imagine yourself as Leonardo da Vinci staring at a complex problem such as why the moon glows at night. You have some scientific equations, a few specialized tools, and then some creativity and good problem-solving skills. After meditating on it for a while and maybe sketching a painting just to stir up a conspiracy theory or two, you come up with a solution that combines scientific knowledge and a bit of artful intuition. Designing a successful RFID system is a bit like that. Da Vinci used that combination to discover that what we can see of the moon is really the sun reflecting off of it. Old Leonardo would have been great as an RFID technician.
The beginning of this chapter will answer the first basic question you need to sort out when designing an RFID system: what's the best frequency for your specific business application? You'll learn the basics of frequency and some of the behaviors of the various ranges. This is where understanding Chapter 1, "The Physics of RFID," will tie together nicely to give you full understanding of how RFID can really be leveraged.
This section also focuses on something that most of those who are preparing to take the Comp-TIA exam will be asked to determine at some point in their career: what's the best UHF reader? Understanding what happens when you test readers not only will help you pick the correct reader, but also will give you insight when you begin to set them up. You'll see some of the science behind the individual metric testing and you'll get a flavor for the art with the use-case testing as well.
After the reader, the next thing that falls naturally in the analysis is the cable. This chapter will show you some of the basics, and again give you the equations to determine the right choice for a 100 percent accurate RFID system.
You'll then follow the path from the reader to the cable out to the antenna. Although we covered antennas in Chapter 3, "Site Analysis," this overview will serve as a good refresher on what you've already learned.
Last, I'll give you a little bit of insight on middleware. This chapter's final section will cover just the basics because the middleware component is evolving so rapidly and is not a big part of the CompTIA test.