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Using Bar codes with VB

Hi!

I need some help with the Barcode device. Could any one tell me how much does it cost and where could i get further information on how to use it in VB or Access2000.

Are there any free software available on the net that use it?

Nomi.
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Syed Irtaza Ali
Asked:
Syed Irtaza Ali
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1 Solution
 
hiranmayaCommented:
I can give some suggetion:

1. Install IR device/bar code device to computer
2. define bar code sequence in the vb program to read as characters
3. Connect to device by vb program and read bar code once bar codes are shown in front or read if found any activity
4. Convert codes to readable charatcters
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TimCotteeCommented:
How long is a piece of string?

Generally speaking barcode scanners fall into two categories:

1) Keyboard Wedge: reads the barcode and places the decoded string into the keyboard buffer

2) Serial Connection: reads the barcode and places the decoded data into the serial buffer for reading using a communications control.

Each has its benefits and downsides, the keyboard wedge is usually the simplest as whatever is scanned is then placed in the keyboard buffer and is simply "typed" into whichever application/control has the focus at that time. The serial communications type is more suited to high volume / precision scanning especially where you have fixed units scanning items on a conveyor or similar. This method allows you to read the data and then automatically determine what to do with it without it having to go into a textbox or other control first.

As for cost, it depends on how much you want to spend, which features you require - which barcode formats you wish to read etc - and which manufacturer you want.
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Syed Irtaza AliAuthor Commented:
guys Im totally new with the bar codes. The main reason Im using it for is in a library system. Suppose I reader has not issued a book and when he is about to leave the book will be scanned and a beep will occur. If the book is issued the barcode on the book will be decoded and a flag set that this book has been issued so when the reader leaves the library he does not get a beep on scanning.

Now could someone give me a detailed info on barcode detectors and barcodes, also their usage with VB and databases.

TimCoffee could u describe your view using the above info i have written and hiranmaya what does IR stand for?


Nomi.
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hiranmayaCommented:
IR stands for Infra-Red devices. We will be getting better information for you.
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TimCotteeCommented:
Ok, for something like this I would suggest that you look at simple keyboard wedge scanners. Here is a cheap example http://www.kanecal.net/scanner.htm however a simple search on google for keyboard wedge scanners provides a wealth of hits for you to check out. http://www.google.com/search?num=100&hl=en&lr=&newwindow=1&safe=off&q=keyboard+wedge+barcode+scanner

Your process would probably require something like this:

Books table:
  BookID - Barcode
  Title
  Author
  OnLoan - Boolean Yes/No
  OnLoadTo - Reference to userid (optional)
  ...

Users Table:
  UserID - Barcode (on their library card perhaps)
  Name
  Address
  ...

Loans Table:
  UserID
  BookID
  DateOut
  DateDueBack
  ...

You would then have a simple form with a single textbox to start with, scan the barcode from the user's library card, this can then be stored and the appropriate information displayed on the screen, the scan will be detected using the _Change event of the textbox, or alternatively you can have a submit button on the form to then perform the lookup of the userid in the users table. The textbox is now ready to scan the book(s). Each time you scan a book and the data goes into this field you can then do a lookup in the books table for the bookid. If it is onloan you can optionally get the information from the users table for the person it is on loan to. If not then you create a record in the loans table with the bookid and userid and the appropriate dates.

When the book comes back you effectively do the reverse of this operation though you probably wouldn't want to delete the record from the loans table.
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hiranmayaCommented:
very usefull link:
http://www.idautomation.com/
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Syed Irtaza AliAuthor Commented:
TimCoffee thats good info but i think its limited to what i require.
Please check out the library thread.

I need a site that could describe or have an article showing how to use keyboard wedges programatically in VB or Access 2000.

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TimCotteeCommented:
The whole point about a keyboard wedge is that there is no programmatic use required. The decoded string is placed directly in the keyboard buffer, either by software in some cases or because the actual device plugs into the keyboard socket on the computer in parallel with the standard keyboard. When you scan the barcode the data is placed in the keyboard buffer and is then effectively typed into the currently active control whatever that may be.

From reading the other thread though you may want to consider using a serial device instead of a keyboard wedge as the potential scale of the system (I don't know how big your client is of course) could be large and you have much more control using this kind of scanner than you would with a keyboard wedge as this will just dump the data to the current control.
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Syed Irtaza AliAuthor Commented:
Thanks for the info.
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