Hands On with Amusement's RFID Magazine

The ultra-hip French gaming culture magazine Amusement recently published an RFID-loaded special edition. The company was kind enough to ship me a copy to check out.

Hands On with Amusement's RFID Magazine

Essentially, the magazine hoped to bridge the gap between print and web media by using an RFID chip to link related online content. By using a USB RFID reader, the Violet mir:ror, I was able to scan the chip and access additional content through my browser.

The general effect? I'd be lying to say it was much more than a novelty, but that doesn't mean the idea is bad. Amusement linked about 5 pieces of online content, including media clips and even a flash game, through the RFID chip. This part works pretty well. Going instantly between a magazine and a playable game is pretty neat.

What didn't work for me was that the RFID signal isn't really tied to individual stories. You can't just flick a page and have related content pop up. You wave the chip by the mir:ror (I obviously ripped it out for convenience), then a link pops up. You wave it again, and another link pops up. There's not much rhyme or reason to it, which is probably more a limitation of the technology than a flaw with Amusement's design, but it made the experience ever so less futuristicy than I'd hoped.

Hands On with Amusement's RFID Magazine

Still, Amsuement is on to a decent idea here if publishers are able to iron out the kinks. And as for the magazine itself, I wish it were reprinted in English. The inspired layout and design more than rival my favorite gaming magazine, Edge. [Amusement and Violet]