Monday, October 1, 2012

Scanning ISBN bar codes. Does it save time?

     A quick low resolution video of me scanning some books into the program. Easy to use for sure, but each scanner is different I found out. My scanner adds a junk character, like "`" or "~" before the numbers, so each one must be deleted individually. I found that scanning the books in to a text editor first helps, so I can highlight and delete them all at once. I use a Symbol STB4278 scanner, which is the wireless blue tooth version. The base is USB, and i keep it upstairs on my main computer and use the scanner downstairs. The scanner runs about $100, and the cradle (gasp) about $175. I use mine for work related purposes so it's a double use item for me. You do not need drivers installed for this scanner to work.

     Does it really make entering books in faster? Yes and no. I'd say about half of the books I own have a scannable ISBN on the inside cover of the book. The actual UPC or barcode on the back of the book does nothing when entering books, otherwise this would be much faster. I have to delete the junk character, copy and past each number. I have a laptop downstairs with the book program on it, but the last time I used a laptop to do this, the hard drive took a dump while i was entering books, and i had not exported the library file for the whole month. Never again. Desktop or nothing for me. All in all, it beats hauling armloads of books up and down the stairs.

     I have a program on the Ipad called Splashtop. If mirrors anything on you're desktop to the Ipad. I do use this when scanning just to make sure things are going in okay, and i can make little adjustments here and there without running up and down the stairs. I highly recommend this. Below is a video of me playing World of Warcraft on Splashtop so you can see how it works.

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