TalkBarcode Scanner


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Barcode Scanner

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Jun 25, 2019, 4:21pm

We have times when our scanner does not recognize random barcodes. Any helps as to why it does this?

Jun 25, 2019, 8:17pm

>1 FTNGREENLIBRARY: We'll need some examples of the barcodes it's not recognizing—are they printed barcode labels from us, or ISBN barcodes? Where are you scanning them (to search your library, or check items in/out. Are you getting any result or error message, or is it simply not scanning?

Sep 9, 2019, 6:03am

I am having similar problems. I am trying to create Patron barcodes using existing IDs (a combination of letters and numbers). I transformed them into barcodes using the font Code39 but the TinyCat barcode reader cannot detect them.

In a separate attempt, i used the TinyCat bar codes and barcode reader to create a patron ID but it generates a long strong of .xxxxxx. text within the Admin field for creating Patron ID. Why does it do this?


Sep 10, 2019, 8:38am

>3 SAIGONSTAR: I'd need to see a couple of pictures of the actual barcodes you made to see what's going on here. Can you explain what "font Code39" you're using? Did you download the font from somewhere? I'm guessing there may be an issue with that somehow.

Re: creating a patron ID by using the TinyCat barcodes and barcode reader: do you mean you used LibraryThing's pre-printed barcodes and CueCat scanners? If so, you cannot scan-to-enter the barcodes in the patron ID field, because the CueCat does not output plain text (as you've discovered). You'll need to add the barcode number/s manually in the "Barcode/ID" field for patrons before being able to scan-to-search those barcodes for your patrons. I hope this helps.

Oct 10, 2019, 2:42am

Hi Kristi, thanks for your reply. Yes, its a downloadable font into Word document. I use only TinyCat barcodes and barcode reader otherwise. My main problems are Tinycat barcodes
1/ tend to smudge after a few fingers touch it
2/ putting a scotch tape over it makes it unreadable for the barcode reader

Currently for patrons, i create a simple ID using their initials and one number. I am concerned that students may lose their library card with barcode and i will need to use new barcodes and input new numbers each year.

Currently for books, i place the barcode on the inside pages without a scotch tape and write the barcode number manually so i can type it in incase the barcode fades off after a few scans.


Oct 11, 2019, 9:11am

Thanks for the info. So, what are you looking for help with, specifically?

Re: your patron IDs. If your students lose their library card/barcode number, you should just be able to bring up their patron account (by name or other data fields) within your TinyCat and find what their barcode number is, so you can generate a new card/label for them.

Re: book barcodes. We do print our barcodes with a laser printer which is supposed to minimize smudging, though this may still not be perfect. I did scanning labels covered with tape, and found that though the reflective type of tape failed scanning, using a matte tape worked just fine. I'd recommend trying a matte/non-glossy tape for your labels, which should help.

Let me know if I'm missing anything else!

Oct 22, 2019, 10:53am

Thanks for your good advice on using matte tape. I will try that

Yes, generally i do an alphabet-letter combination for student IDs, using their names and a favourite number to make it easier to remember.

However, teachers are asking to have barcodes instead so they can just scan the student's ID rather than type it in. I tried converting their alphabet-letter assigned IDs into barcodes but somehow the barcode reader couldn't scan them. Any tips on this

Oct 22, 2019, 11:05am

If you're using Code 39 barcode symbology to create your barcodes, you'll just want to make sure you're following the proper format. (For example, I believe you can only use uppercase letters within Code 39 barcodes...) I hope this helps!

Oct 24, 2019, 7:49am

i will try the no-uppercase format you recommended. You're invaluable. Thanks again

Oct 24, 2019, 9:01am

Sorry, rather you want to only use uppercase letters in the barcode, hope this helps!

Edited: Nov 25, 2019, 5:54pm

Something we have done with our school Patron records that might be of interest. I discovered the AVERY DESIGN & PRINT facility online (it's free to use) and it covers all kinds of barcodes and labeling types. It allows you to sort all your Patron details out on a spreadsheet including the numbers to be used for barcodes which are then uploaded to Avery Design and Print facility. You can then set up the label sizes and barcodes to be used - (including the patron name and number positioned to your liking). It produces a PDF of the page layout(s) which you then download and print on a laser printer of whatever.
I use it to produce A4 sheets of barcodes without labels. I then place these sheets into a clear display folder. The barcode reader works fine through the clear plastic sleeves. I chose to print them out 3 across and 7 down - a double open page displays a whole class and the 10 spare numbers per class that I also create in my spreadsheet. Our barcode labels for the books (accession numbers) are also code 128 and we have these printed for us on A4 sheets - these we have covered with clear contact film.
I used the same spreadsheet to create a csv file and import the names and codes into TinyCat's Patron file.
BTW I have stopped using Code 39 in favour of Code 128 which is a more modern and smaller length barcode (and also caters for alpha numeric codes). I've been using a simple and cheap barcode reader which has been very good on the code 128 codes.

Nov 25, 2019, 6:09pm

I have rarely had any problems when using code39-fonts to create barcode labels, even in very small font size, regardless if I use my smartphone or the barcode scanner. Maybe you forgot to add leading and trailing * signs? This is mandatory for code39.