11 Replies Latest reply on Mar 27, 2012 7:14 AM by dobrodasilva

    Barcode scanning??? RedLaser needed, badly.



      Barcode scanning??? RedLaser needed, badly.


      I keep checking on FM Go progress and am always surprised, nay, shocked that there isn't a built-in Barcode scanning feature yet.  This seems like one of the #1 use-cases for this product and yet we are still forced to cobble together "solutions" using 3rd party apps like CNS Barcode or pic2shop which both stink in various ways, are expensive and also slow down the whole application flow considerably.  (try scanning even 10 barcodes into an FM Go db using pic2shop -- you'll be there for at least 10 minutes, and that's if you can even get these apps to recognize your barcodes, which I couldn't most of the time even on my iPhone 4S with it's beefed-up camera).  This affects efficiency, battery life, etc etc the list goes on.

      I've tested just about every code-scanning app in the AppStore as of late-November and found only ONE that actually works reasonably well for small barcodes or low-light conditions -- RedLaser.  Sadly this has been purchased by eBay so it's not likely that we'll see any "enterprise" features coming from them in the future. 

      Luckily they have an SDK which can be licensed to bring the RedLaser engine into any other iOS app -- I would personally pay double the $19.99 app price for a "FM Go Pro" edition with RedLaser's engine built in. 

      Please FileMaker, license this RedLaser engine asap and roll it into your product so we can do some real work with this app. I'd happily pay $40-50 for this without batting an eye.

        • 1. Re: Barcode scanning??? RedLaser needed, badly.

          I totally agree!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          • 2. Re: Barcode scanning??? RedLaser needed, badly.

            Check out CNS  Barcode app. CNS has been in business for years and this one works with one caveat: it requires an auto-focus lens (iPhone) and only recognizes the larger barcodes if you use a Touch or iPad (clumbsy isn't it?).

            The new plugins for IOS are apps that use the URL schema so its something to book up on. CNS handles that for you. Get used to the idea of thinking differently. apps = plugins

            If you read my blog posts at http://www.gofm.biz where I recently posted about bar codes you might get a few insights.

            It has taken me awhile to understand that other apps are the new plugins for GO and maybe plugin developers will come to see that and soon we'll see some apps for GO that work like plugins but the lowered pricing may disuade some from doing so. The first thing people will do is complain about the 'higher' cost of the plugin/apps, right. $15 for CNS Barcode? Outrageous...:)

            You'll have to do some homework on the apps.

            Oh, Skeletonkey also has a blog post on how to use one of the scanner apps.

            Scan my qr with RedLaser to open my blog!


            • 3. Re: Barcode scanning??? RedLaser needed, badly.

              I already bought CNS Barcode -- and you're right $15 is nothing.  It's not the cost that I'm concerned about (read my original post) it's the speed & efficiency of the solution. Can it be made to work using CNS? Yes.  Is it something I'd be "proud of" -- definitely NOT.  I might muddle through using a solution like for myself but I'd never be comfortable recommending it to a client.  And calling Apps a replacement or an analogy for Plugins on the desktop is a real stretch.  Plugins on the desktop run code within the main FMP executable and the user never has to jump from one app to another -- the workflow is seamless and integrated.  Plugins can be distributed and installed along with a solution while Apps cannot.  FM Go is slow as a snail stuck in molasses as it is, and it's just worse when CNS has to launch each time, warm up the camera to snap a barcode and then toggle back to FM to return the result.  The whole thing has the look & feel of using a dial-up modem in 1997.

              • 4. Re: Barcode scanning??? RedLaser needed, badly.

                Filemaker Go is walking a path designed to accomodate beginners and not professional level developers. Perhaps it will adopt a different path but if sales continue at a brisk pace there will be no need, in managements eyes, to spend money to fix what we feel is broken. Maybe we need to occupy the Filemaker offices?  :)

                We are to make Filemaker Go do what we want and also to use products that never considered Filemaker Go as a match up. 75% of the code in the scanner apps is of no interest to us as well as 75% of the code Filemaker uses to interface with one of the apps. The relationship should be in stealth mode with Filemaker freezing the screen while we run off to talk to the other apps, just like a plugin. And all we want from the little app is to see the scan window and not all the stuff it has spent money on to look appealing to buyers.

                Plugins and apps will eventually function the same and are the same idea except that plugins don't work all by themseles. They are stealthy little critters. Cut out all of the user displays and feature buttons and you have a plugin.

                Unfortunately it is going to be difficult to sell a $50 app/plugin for a $20 Filemaker Go application...

                How much will we pay if FIlemaker Go begins to add these features? Should the developer pay for the extra features in a higher price for Filemaker Advanced or should Filemaker devliver a Filemaker Go Advanced for PCs and Macs?

                Perhaps Filemaker needs to find a way to quickly add a feature to Go and ship it as an update or upgrade. But if you add the feature, say barcoding, then you have to add that function to Filemaker Pro, right...

                Of course if you want to use a tablet you don't have to use an iPad which is more lower end than this Windows 7 tablet which will run Filemaker Pro:


                • 5. Re: Barcode scanning??? RedLaser needed, badly.

                  I just bought Red Laser for archiving my books, DVDs and CDs and my very first thought was to use Bento4 as my all purpose shared-on-all-my-devices library. But I cannot find an elegant way to import my RedLaser lists into a new Bento4 library. I would love some help getting these two EXCELLENT programs to work together. Thanks!

                  • 6. Re: Barcode scanning??? RedLaser needed, badly.

                    All (except drjamm):

                    Thank you for your posts.  Good discussion and good information.

                    I recommend you entering these posts into our Feature Requests web form at:


                    These web entry suggestions are monitored and read by Development and Product Management where they are then discussed and considered for future releases. Although I could copy each of your posts and paste them into the web form, there are a couple of questions asked that only you individually can answer.

                    FileMaker, Inc.

                    • 7. Re: Barcode scanning??? RedLaser needed, badly.


                      Thank you for your post.

                      Bento can import Numbers, Excel, comma-separated values (CSV) text and tab-separated values (TSV) text files.  If you can get your data into one of these formats, then you can import that data into Bento, either into an existing Library (table) or a new Library.

                      Let me know if you need additional clarification.

                      FileMaker, Inc.

                      • 8. Re: Barcode scanning??? RedLaser needed, badly.

                        Thanks TSGal,

                        I followed your suggestion and posted my request using the Feature Request submission form.  Hopefully it will get noticed!  Suggest any others who desire this feature to also submit a request, there's strength in numbers! Smile

                        • 11. Re: Barcode scanning??? RedLaser needed, badly.

                          i suggest u use barcode 2 sql 

                          u can find it at app store also barcode2sql.com

                          free to download and cool design


                          enjoy ;)