These are the links on this site Google "barcode site:forums.filemaker.com"
Mostly about filemaker techniques for manipulating barcode scans.
This is the Google for web links Google "barcode scanner filemaker"
Type in barcode on this page.
This is the link that keeps appearing in googles and these forums.
Found some clues here: http://www.briandunning.com/bar-code/
Sounds like a barcode scanner is just an automated text input device by the way he describes it. But this would mean that I would then need to become proficient at writing scripts that would give function to the scanner's data entry.
Also, it is still unclear how a scanner with memory would be integrated back into some function later when you return to your computer.
"when you return to your computer"
This is a key detail not in your first post and makes a big difference when it comes to integrating the scanner with your FileMaker database.
A scanner can be hooked up via USB cable directly to your computer. It then usually is set to run in "keyboard emulation mode"--which means that the data is input into the computer as though the data were typed very quickly and perfectly. Such configurations can usually be customized to put additional characters at the beginning and end of the scanned data--which can trip script triggers in FileMaker to put the data in the right field and initiated the correct processing.
If you are using a scanner that is not conntected to your scanner and which stores each scan until your return and download the list of scans, you'll need to research data formats with the scanner manufacturer. It's very likely that it will download a text file of some type to yoru computer that can be imported and batch processed by FileMaker.
If you using barcode scanning with an iPhone or iPad, see the posts from the FM Go forum as these are integrated differently from the above two approaches.
Sometimes I forget Google usually searches a forum much better than the forum search function can.
All the places I've been reading have been slim on actual usable info. IDAutomation seems to be a leader in the barcode arena and I've already asked them, but they haven't been too helpful in giving useful info either.
On the other hand, the info I read on this forum is probably very helpful if you already know how to speak the FMPro language. However, my understanding of FMpro is pretty superficial yet and I have not familiarized myself with the syntax and vocabulary needed to actually take advantage of that information.
But what I'm gathering is that the scanners are not very smart, they are just reading and transferring barcode text strings. If you want to create a system that actually performs functions, then you have to know how to code in some software that can then do something with that information. In other words, it sounds like I'm going to have to become a lot more familiar with FMPro in order to perform any sort of complex automation.
I was hoping that I could program the scanner to do these things directly via some user friendly GUI that comes with the scanner but it's sounding like that's not the case.
It is similar to an image scanner. Most of the included interface software is less than adequte.
For an image scanner the best choice is VueScan by http://hamrick.com
Unfortunately, he does not do barcode software.
This is the Wikipedia page for barcode http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barcode_reader
Jackpot!!?? When they cover the subject, often they are the most informative.
idautomation is #2 of 10...
and CNS Barcode Plugin http://www.cnsplug-ins.com/Plug-ins/CNS_Barcode
I have not yet decided on the implementation yet and am merely trying to gather information at this stage of the system design process. Therefore, it could be a tethered scanner or a wireless scanner, or a memory based scanner or a smart phone type scanner. My comment above "when you return to your computer" was just my way of saying that I hadn't quite understood how that type of situation was handled in general. Not that that is the approach we're taking.
I am trying to understand how these things work in order to make the best decision for our case. So far everything points to the fact that I'll need to become much more adept at scriptwriting and fluent in FMPro syntax in order to make a workable system.
Although I just ran across this product which claims to make it easier. I somehow doubt that it really does, but I'm curious to hear a more informed opinion.
...become much more adept at scriptwriting and fluent in FMPro syntax in order to make a workable system.
Well, the more you know about a given software application the more you can get out of it. This is as true of Filemaker as it is MS Word, Photoshop or any other app you might use. Trying to create solutions in FileMaker without a good working knowledge of scripting will considerably handicap your efforts--for anything you choose to attempt in FileMaker--not just scanning barcodes.
I've had pretty good luck helping folks here in the FM Pro Forum set up a tethered scanner to work with some fairly simple settings available to almost any model tethered scanner. A search of this forum using "barcode" or just "scanner" is likely to bring up a number of such threads. In none of these threads did we use third party software except that supplied by the scanner manufacturer to configure the scanner to append text to the beginning and end of the scanned data.
I have never quite believed those top 10 review sites. Somehow it feels like they might have purchased their position on the list.
It's looking like I'm going to have to delve into Filemaker coding. Does anyone suggest any online resources or books to get a crash course in Filemaker?
Also, is there hope for an Android version of FM Go? If so, we could all use our phones.
You have to understand that I'm coming from ground zero on barcodes. I seriously didn't even know you needed to do scripting to utilize them in any productive way.
Yes I read a couple of your responses on some other threads. I think I may just get a USB scanner and then build from there. If I can build up my skills then I would like to work up to having a memory based scanner so that I can scan and bring results back to the computer.
At the very least the barcode scanner will increase our accuracy at input, even if everything else is done manually.
It feels like there are some very common problems that have a much easier solution but it takes awhile for software to catch up and make it accessible to a broader audience.
Until then, you just have to jump in...
The White Paper for FMP Novices is useful -
Filemaker Free - Listing of free resources -
Free unlocked templates are useful for examining design
By Richard Carlton Consulting
Starting Point -
RCC Blog -
By yzysoft.com very clean and elegant Contacts| Products | Invoices | Letters
Sample Database -
A free calendar is available and can be integrated into your database
Seedcode Calendar Free -
Looking at FMP business database demos is useful - some are fully useable
The Excelisys Business Tracker V3.0 -
Filemaker released a FMP runtime database in 2007 for students called "Campus Productivity Kit" and is available online, notably at CNet
Google "Campus Productivity Kit"
WIN - http://download.cnet.com/FileMaker-Campus-Productivity-Kit/3000-2124_4-10577579.html/
Mac - http://download.cnet.com/FileMaker-Campus-Productivity-Kit/3000-2124_4-10577567.html/
You can rename the database from a .usr file to a .fp7 file and open in FMP 7 thru 11
Lynda dot com has Filemaker Videos (portions are free)
YouTube - Filemaker Videos
UK FileMaker Channel
FileMaker, Inc. Channel
Dwayn Wright's Channel
Soliant Consulting Channel
Filemaker Academy Channel
Skeleton Key Channel
Accelerate Computer Training Channel
Filemaker Wikipedia -
Filemaker - Version By Version -
You can search specific Filemaker sites on this Custom Google Search I created
http://www.google.com/cse/home?cx=001044389222327874554:vi8it1bulm8Scoop.it is an information curation site - I discovered it three days ago.This is my scoop it site - http://scoop.it/t/filemaker-info/
The simplest way to use a usb connected scanner:
Click or tab into a field, then scan your bar code.
The scripting is intended to make the process automatic--just like a cashier scanning codes in a store and the POS system automatically adds the scanned item to the customer's invoice and updates inventory.
It's definitely something you can automate a bit at a time. I'd suggest confirming one detail before purchasing any given scanner: Make sure that addditional characters can be added to both the beginning and end of the scanned data.
Phil, Now I understand the role of the scanner and the role of the scripting. Thanks for the tip on the scanner purchase.
On an unrelated issue, since it appears you are a moderator, thought I would let you know that the links I get by email to these updated posts only work if logged in. If you aren't logged in, the links take you to an error page. Seems like that is by design, but it doesn't make sense why the forum designers would do that since this is a public forum, and it's a little inconvenient due to the extra clicks necessary to get to the post. Anyway just a heads up in case you didn't know that already.
David, Thanks for those links, there seems to be some good stuff in there. I'll see how far I can get.
This has been previously reported, but I do need to forward the feedback to ModMan--the FileMaker Manager who serves are forum moderator. This seems to be a recent issue--but then I always disable email subscription as my box would be overwhelmed if I didn't--so maybe I just haven't been in a position to observe the problem.
I see. Well just thought I'd pass that along and for what its worth here's the error message:
The link you clicked contained an authentication parameter that failed to authenticate. This might have happened because:
1 - The link was intended for you, but has expired. Refresh the previous page and try the link again.
2 - This authentication parameter has already been used by you. Refresh the previous page and try the link again.
3 - The link you clicked was not intended for you, but was meant for another user and was given to you erroneously.