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  1. #1
    Silver Lounger
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    OCR and Barcode Scanning Device

    My employer is looking to develop a standard invoice/billing, across multiple software systems.

    Currently, the only invoice/bill that we "scan", uses OCR Technology, through a hardware device such as this device.

    In the future, all scanned information will either be in the same OCR format, or possibly in a barcode format (yet to be determined).

    What we're looking for, is a PC Keyboard (USB or PS/2) that will accept entry from both the OCR and Barcode format. This is all in an effort to keep the hardware footprint to a minimum.

    Does anyone have any suggestions of make and models of such a device? How about another solution? For what it's worth, I've already contacted the maker of the device linked above, and they do not have anything at this time (or so they tell me) that meet these requirements.

    Thanks for any help you folks can provide.
    Christopher Baldrey

  2. #2
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: OCR and Barcode Scanning Device

    I have never seen a keyboard that will do OCR. Does it need to accept standard (8.5 x 11) paper?
    -Mark

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    Uranium Lounger viking33's Avatar
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    Re: OCR and Barcode Scanning Device

    I think that the use of the term "keyboard cable" on that site mentioned in the link, is rather misleading. Where they should really be saying USB or Serial input rather than keyboard.
    BOB
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  4. #4
    Silver Lounger
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    Re: OCR and Barcode Scanning Device

    What we're looking for, would be your typical keyboard layout (preferablly US English 104 key). with a slot, much like what you would see at a Point of Sale for credit or bank card swiping. It would be open at both ends, to allow for any "length" of paper, but only have to be 1" or so deep (that may be too deep). Essentially, a magstrip reader, but for paper with ink.
    Christopher Baldrey

  5. #5
    Silver Lounger Bruce K's Avatar
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    Re: OCR and Barcode Scanning Device

    Hi, Bob ~

    A 'keyboard cable' is actually the correct term. Another common term is 'keyboard wedge'. This is a cable that can be either low-power RS-232 (not true serial) or TTL, typical in scanners. It is neither USB nor serial, but is 'wedged' between the keyboard and the computer, drawing power from the USB or PS/2 source.

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    Super Moderator jscher2000's Avatar
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    Re: OCR and Barcode Scanning Device

    The new PaperPort scanners aren't as tiny as the originals, but could be a fallback. Check out the Strobe XP product line: these little guys take up about 2" of desk space between the keyboard and whatever is behind it. Of course, there needs to be some place for the paper to go...

    <table border=0 align=center><td width=33%><IMG SRC=http://www.visioneer.com/Products/sheetfed/xp100/images/strobexp_160.jpg></td><td width=33%><IMG SRC=http://www.visioneer.com/Products/sheetfed/xp200/images/xp200_160px.gif></td></table>

  7. #7
    Silver Lounger Bruce K's Avatar
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    Re: OCR and Barcode Scanning Device

    Hi, Chris ~

    In addition to the optical scanners we implement with our lab management system, we also use specialized keyboards for the time and attendance solution software we market. We have a supplier who can most likely accommodate you. The keyboards are able to be ordered with the configuration you need and they have the single, dual, or three track mag reader as well as the Infrared LED bar code reader.

    As a result of House Bill 128, the OCR technology (the same as what is used on your checks) will be incorporated by many manufactured keyboard readers, but these will not be available for another 90-180 days.

    Here is a link: Partner Tech USA Keyboards

    You may wish to speak with our contact Keith Schroer - (877) 634-8498.

  8. #8
    Silver Lounger Bruce K's Avatar
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    Re: OCR and Barcode Scanning Device

    Hi, Jefferson ~

    The scanners in this case are not the duplication kind one might generally think of when referring to scanners. The type of scanners needed here are of the data-reading type which read encoded magnetic resin or ink strips through a magnetic head or barcodes through a LED or laser.

  9. #9
    Silver Lounger
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    Re: OCR and Barcode Scanning Device

    Thanks everyone so far, for your input.

    Bruce, your link looks very close to what we're looking for. I'll be sure to drop Keith a line, if and when we have any questions specifically for these products.

    Sorry to Jefferson, and anyone else who didn't understand the data entry requirement, rather than the replication. These scanners we require are for quick, and accurate entry of information, rather than relying on the many keystrokes of a person.
    Christopher Baldrey

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