ARCHITECTURAL CHALLENGES OF SMART CARD DESIGN

This webpage has been developed as part of a team project for the Fall 2000 CS 322 Computer Architecture class of Rick Stevens at the University of Chicago. It is devoted to Smart Cards, objects that have been proliferating in the modern world and are likely to become ubiquitous in the near future.

An extensive amount of literature on this vast subject  (including the numerous internet sources) has become available to the interested reader in recent years. Few, if any, try to achieve a balance between explanation, technicalities and brevity - and this is what we have set out to achieve. We analyze basic elements of Smart Card architecture  and their standards, and present detailed case studies of the recently introduced  multi-functional Smart (Java) Card architectural platforms SmartJ and TinyJ.

We also discuss Java Cards as a modern trend in the Smart Card industry, and consider applications of the Java Card technology not only to the traditional plastic cards, but also to the related devices of various form factors e.g. Java Rings.  We touch on the architectural problems with respect to the Smart Card security issues and list current applications of Smart Cards as well as project their applications and architectural design characteristics into the future.