January 2007


Technology Today
January 2007

In 1962, researcher Everett Rogers theorized that any new technology—then, radio and television; today, the Internet—is adopted according to common pattern. He charted how “early adopters” (the 13.5% of the population, according to Rogers, who are always looking for something new) take rapidly to new innovations, while “laggards” (16% of people, tied to traditional methods) resist change. The rest of the population, in Rogers’ theory, falls somewhere in between, along a bell curve, when it comes to adopting new technology.

This month, School Foodservice & Nutrition peers along the curve—and around the proverbial bend—at the latest high-tech solutions in the field of child nutrition. For example, society is in the relatively early stages of adopting biometrics, a technology that could drastically change the nature of commerce.

What are biometrics? According to the International Biometric Industry Association, they’re technologies that can confirm the identity of an individual by comparing that person’s face, fingerprint, hand, iris, palm, signature, skin or voice with computerized patterns based on that person’s physical characteristics. For example, some child nutrition professionals have started using finger-scanning biometrics to facilitate school meal payments. What does this new technology entail? Will it catch on at other schools? Learn more by reading “Positive Identification.”

Next, learn about an innovative trend in vending machines with “More Than a Machine.” The automated product distribution equipment you are likely to find in many of today’s schools are not just any ordinary vending machines. These new machines may have the capability of providing your foodservice operation with income that seemed lost forever and of capturing students who don’t want to wait in line. Welcome to the new wave in vending: These machines offer healthy, reimbursable school meals.

And don’t miss “Disking up Success.” What matters isn’t the latest technology—although today’s school nutrition professionals have numerous programs and applications to choose among. What matters is how you use that technology to make the business decisions that affect your entire organization. Discover the strategies that school nutrition professionals across the nation have used to incorporate new technologies. SF&N reveals how they ultimately improved their operations, whether in menu planning, nutrient analysis, inventory flow, accounting, information management, streamlining budgets or other areas.

From biometrics to budgeting software, School Foodservice & Nutrition is here to give you the inside scoop on new technology—helping you make the decisions that keep you on the cutting edge of child nutrition. Enjoy your annual technology issue!

Driving Up SuccessJanuary lock
What matters isn’t the latest technology, but how you use it to make the business decisions that affect the entire operation.

Good things come in small packages for these state association presidents.

Positive Identification lock
Recognize this nifty new technology? It’s trained to recognize you. Learn how biometric technology is imprinting itself on school nutrition.

More Than a Machine lock
You won’t find just any old vending machines in schools today. Some can protect student health and return income thought lost forever. 


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