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Ad hoc networks

This may create a large new market for printed electronics in the form of billions of RFID smart labels with sensors. Sophisticated RFID tags used by the US Military, and being developed with European Commission funding for postal services can create electronic ad hoc networks. This emulates what happens in a crowded room when a child is lost. People pass on the message "Where is she?" until she is located then the message filters back that she is found and where she is. RFID tags that can electronically talk to other tags permit a similar thing to happen. Thus many short ranges become one long range. Items can be found or, in reverse, the item can get the message through that it is being overheated or stolen etc. Smaller, cheaper, more reliable tags can be used and in larger numbers, permitting wider areas to be monitored.
 
The same can occur when, for cost reasons, it is the interrogators, rather than the tags that communicate with each other. One could even have ad hoc networks within networks, the common factor being that the structure is created for the task in hand and dissolved when the task is completed.