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Printing control characters in bar code

Posted on 2006-03-25
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How can I print control characters such as Record separator (RS), Group separator (GS), EOT into a barcode, so when read those chars will be used by some software for their own evil purposes??

I have not figured out how to actually get them to print, for example I try to convert  a decimal 29 to ascii (↔) but all I get is a " ? ".  I guess the problem is the control char is being executed at the time i convert it to ascii, or press " ^\ " , etc, so all i get back when reading that barcode are ???s instead.  

I have a sample barcode that, when read displays something like " [)> ▲06↔ ... "
my own printed label will read:                                                 " [)>?06? ... "


In the best cases I have managed to print blank squares instead of "?"...    and thats it.

Thanks for your help


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Question by:alcantar06
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by:alcantar06
ID: 16289876
OOOOOPS sorry the "(↔)" part was supposed to show as symbols, such as triangles, arrows, etc.  

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by:alcantar06
ID: 16289963
I have scanned this sample barcode, if anyone is interested I can email this to you, unfortunately at the time I do not have a page to upoad it to.  
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by:fostejo
ID: 16290365
alcantar06,

It could be that you're attempting to encode characters in the barcode that it simply isn't designed to encode - the valid characters will depend upon the barcode type you're using.

For instance, in Code 39, your can only use "1234567890ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ - . $ / + % SPACE"

Have a look at http://www.barcodeman.com/info/barspec.php which contains some useful info about the specifications..

cheers
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by:fostejo
ID: 16290371
alcantar06,

ps. Extended Code 39 may fit the bill perhaps?  http://www.barcodeman.com/info/c39_ext.php
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by:alcantar06
ID: 16290920
This has to be PDF 417, and I have a sample printed barcode that contains this characters.  Obiously I dont get support from the supplier of this sample
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by:fostejo
ID: 16293256
alcantar06,

The following link may be of use then as it discusses encoding non-printing and international characters etc in PDF417..

http://www.idautomation.com/pdf417faq.html

Snippet:

"...Java: DataToEncode= "1234" + (char)13 + "56";
Visual Basic: DataToEncode= "1234" & Chr(13) & "56"

Method 2, use ApplyTilde: If ApplyTilde if set to "true" or "1", you can use the format ~ddd if you want to specify the ASCII code of the character to be encoded. Default is off. For example, if you enter the following text in the Data field: pdf~029417 you will actually be encoding   pdfGS417  Where GS is a delimiter ASCII 29 character. This can be used in a single string to encode GS and RS characters (GS = ASCII 29 and RS = ASCII 30). Other commonly used ASCII codes are ~009 for a tab and ~013 which is a return function. These are useful when encoding multiple fields in a single symbol..."



cheers,
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by:alcantar06
ID: 16431631
Found a way.

It would seem my programming language (Agilent VEE) does not support use of this characters.  

Also had some trouble with the printer I was using (intermec) and with the print and design software (Loftware).

What did the trick?  Desgning in Loftware, Printing in Zebra sending commands thru VEE, using Zebra programming Language (ZPL).  

There is an instruction there that will translate a HEX value to its corresponding ASCII character (^FH).

So in VEE, write to an IO object a string:       

             e.g.:        ...^FH^FD", _04,"^FS"


^FH will instruct Zebra to translate the hex num value after the " _ ", in this case #H04 = EOT, prints out as a black diamond.






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by:fostejo
ID: 16431729
wow... never even heard of that stuff!!

nice one alcantar06 - now I know where to come to for VEE and ZPL support !!  ;)
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