The magnetic stripe still has pull, even amid some of the most forward-thinking of card industry tekkies.

The Cardtech/Securtech conference drew 7,000 people to Orlando's sprawling convention center this week mainly because of new card technology-semiconductor chips that can be embedded in the plastic. But over and over again, attention turned to what is still the credit card industry's data-encoding standard, the one those smarter cards are supposed to displace.

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