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range to welcome visitors at the museum's front door, and subsequently sending an auto-
matic email message so that when they return home in the evening there is a message
from the museum waiting for them, and thanking them for their visit.
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The major technical difficulty encountered by the museum lay with the card vending
machines
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, which jammed frequently in the early stages.The machines were soon adjust-
ed to manage the stacks of cards more reliably, and staff discovered that the stacks had to
be loaded in a certain way to prevent frequent failures.The RFID technology itself,
which resides within the card, posed few problems for the museum's technical staff. It has
been found to be both robust and reliable.
The museum is currently looking into alternative ways of vending and promoting the
cards, in order to maximise visitor take-up. Having staff on hand at all times to demon-
strate the benefits is expensive, and is not felt to be the most efficient use of staff time. A
new and more involving vending machine, featuring integral graphical panels for
demonstration purposes, is currently in the works.The prospect of dropping the price of
the NetPass cards, or even making them free, has also been mooted. It is hoped that these
moves will entice more visitors to experience the NetWorld exhibit in the most full and
rewarding way possible.
Case Study II Sad Business School, University of Oxford
(www.sbs.ox.ac.uk)
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The Sad Business School has recently relocated into a new, purpose-built building.
The school's new library has inherited over 21,000 books and journals from its previous
location, and a security system was immediately required in order to prevent unauthorised
removal of books and other moveable items. In addition to this primary objective, the sys-
tem was also required to facilitate stock management and inventorying, as well as allowing
borrowers to issue and return books themselves in a quick and straightforward way.
After consultation with colleagues in the library, which has seven full-time members of
Smart Labels
and Smart Tags
80
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This could be considered a novel application of Customer Relationship Management.
36
From American Vending Sales Inc, http://www.americanvending.com
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This case study is based on a telephone interview with Ms Fiona Richardson, the Library's Information
Services Manager, which took place on 03/11/2002.
The reading room at Sad Business School
Sad Business School