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 What are Standards?

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How does ISO work
Current SC31 standards
Bar code standards
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ISO 18000 RFID standards
Data Carriers Standards
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Have you ever wondered about standards for the AIDC industry? Some of you are probably aware of the fact that they exist, but you may not know where they come from, and who actually created them. In this update, I will try to dispel some of the myths and help you to understand the processes involved.

For more on the subject of Standards see the links at the bottom of the page.

First thing to understand is that there are two different types of standards.

Technology Standards

The first type of standard is a technology standard or specification. This type of standard is the base line for the creation of a product that uses the technology. An example of this is a barcode symbology standard. The majority of the symbology standards that exist today have been created by AIM (For a list of AIM Symbology standards visit this link). Some of these barcode standards are currently being used as the basis for standardization at the ISO/IEC JTC 1 level by SC31. Others where the international demand is not there will remain as AIM standards. An explanation of how ISO standardization works

High Tech Aid offers Expertise in AIDC technologies such as RFID and barcode as well as NFC and Internet of Things Biometrics standards are just starting to be developed and a good reference to the work that is going on can be found at http://www.biometrics.org/html/standards.html.

RFID standards are being developed by SC31 along with barcode, data syntax, and conformance standards. There is also work being done at national levels by some countries. For a list of some of the international, regional, and national standards bodies visit http://www.aimglobal.org/standards/stndrdorgs.asp

Bar Code standards have been developed mostly by AIM (http://www.aimglobal.org) though some of these have now been adopted by ISO. See a summary of Bar Code Standards.

Application Standards

High Tech Aid offers Resources in AIDC technologies such as RFID and barcode as well as NFC and Internet of ThingsThe second type of standard is what I will term an application standard. In this case a standard is written that will call upon a technology standard as the basis for the implementation of an application. An example of this might be the AIAG standard for Parts Identification and Tracking Application. This application standard defines specifications for both direct marking and labeling of individual parts, kits, assemblies/ subassemblies, unit packs and subpacks, using both Code 39 linear bar codes and Data Matrix two dimensional symbols. The standard describes technical requirements for the symbols, format rules for the data in the symbols, and rules for printing the human-readable interpretation.

In the case of an application standard it is typically the application industry that writes the standard (as in the case above where AIAG wrote the standard for automotive parts marking). The application standard makes reference to the technology standard(s) (in this case Code 39 and Data Matrix), so that the implementation of the symbology itself is correct, but the application standard details how to use the symbology to encode the needed information and what that information should be.

For a list of application standards developers for various industries see this link.  You will see that this list of standards developers covers a wide variety of applications and is probably not all inclusive. You should be able to find a link to the standards you are looking for from this page.

Once you have the basic technology standard written then it becomes available for everyone to use and interpret for their particular use. An example of the use of the barcode technology standards would be the use by the Health Industry Business Communications Council (HIBCC) (http://www.hibcc.org/AUTOIDUPN/standards.htm) of various barcode symbologies in the health care industry. HIBCC have written a series of application standards that use several symbologies to define how bar code technology is used in healthcare. Each of these application standards refers to a technology standard for the rules on creating the symbology, but they add the rules for the data side of the barcode.

High Tech Aid offers Knowledge about AIDC technologies such as RFID and barcode as well as NFC and Internet of ThingsSo, if you are looking for a standard for barcode technology, then you need to look in two places, the symbology standard first and then the application standard from the industry association. From the American Production & Inventory Control Society Inc. (APICS) to the Warehousing Education and Research Council (WERC) there will be an association for your industry that has created an application standard.

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