NFC Presence

I don't blog about what I really work on, for obvious reasons, but I just got two very nice 3220 phones with the Nokia NFC Shell, wrote a small web app, and got clearance from my boss to blog about it, as this stuff is gonna be in the shops, well, if not today, but very soon. NFC is geek for "Near Field Communication", which in turn is geek for "doing really close range communication between two really simple radios." If you're using any sort of a contactless travel pass, credit card, or access key, you're using NFC.

This particular app was pretty trivial to do (and required about five lines of code on the server side): I took two NFC tags (essentially very small memory cards with a radio that can be read/written from up to a few centimetres), wrote the URL of my web service on both of them (using the ~ServiceDiscovery app included), and wrote a little JSP page that handles the interfacing with my blog.

Then I stuck one tag on my work monitor, and another one at home. Now I can just touch one of these tags with my phone, and a few seconds later (some delays are involved with starting the Java midlet and connecting to GPRS) the little box on the right changes to show my location. Voila: NFC-powered presence.

This is in essence no different from doing a Trackback ping; I'm just doing it by touching something with my phone. Not traversing menus, not using the keyboard, not even glancing the screen.

Just touching. It couldn't be simpler.

Took me more time to take the pictures and blog about it than to actually write the app...

(Disclaimer: I work for the company, and I've been somewhat involved in giving birth to these babies. But I wouldn't write about it if it didn't give me the warm fuzzies.)


Nice playful approach. ;) Any other ideas? Did you remove your NFC-presence indicator in the meantime? I can't see it anywhere.

--holger, 30-Oct-2006

Yes, I removed it because I was not using it anymore.

See also this post for some later developments.

--JanneJalkanen, 31-Oct-2006

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"Main_blogentry_010405_1" last changed on 09-Dec-2005 16:59:03 EET by JanneJalkanen.

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