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On 20th July 2007, Newham College of Further Education in East London and industry partners launched their training facility, the ‘Discovery Lab’. Rt Hon Stephen Timms, Minister of State for Competitiveness at the newly formed Department for Business, Enterprise & Regulatory Reform opened Newham College’s Discovery Lab by cutting through an RFID tag which set off a fireworks display on screen. He stated during his opening speech: “RFID is an exciting new technology with the potential to revolutionise many areas of our daily lives. I am delighted that Newham College is taking a lead in showcasing the possibilities to the business community.”
This facility, located at Boardman House, Stratford E15, at the heart of the future Olympic site, will be showcasing a range of RFID technologies from many leading RFID vendors as well as a working lab offering training for all levels of RFID.
The Discovery Lab will provide an interactive environment with which to inform organisations about the possibilities of RFID technology. The training on offer will be of a practical nature—participants will get to take part in exciting active demonstrations and lab experiments utilising the technology. Courses will range from industry sector and general RFID awareness training, RFID Software application training, CompTIA’s (Computer Technology Industry Association) RFID+ course to customised training for businesses. Courses will be offered both online and classroom-based by Newham College in partnership with RFID4U, who have been a pioneer in RFID training in vendor neutral and vendor authorised RFID learning solutions since 2002. Martin Tolhurst, Principal and Chief Executive of Newham College, summed up his aspirations for the lab, saying: “Whilst any major new training facility in this hugely important technology would be significant, the unique nature of the Discovery Lab makes its launch especially exciting. We expect the Discovery Lab to be the UK’s premier training resource for RFID technology in the UK.”
Newham College’s ExcITe Centre of Vocational Excellence (COVE) in Networking & IT and RFID4U with a consortium of major RFID vendors brought together and delivered by RadiantWave and RFID4U have worked together with the support of the Learning and Skills Council to build this facility. Newham College’s RFID vendor partners include Cisco Systems, Intermec Technologies, Wavetrend, Trovan, Sonitor and Integral RFID, integrated by RadiantWave with sample applications from RadiantWave and RedPrairie.