Barcode Quality is Risk Management

Barcode quality is increasingly important: barcodes are used in more critical applications than ever before. Matching a wristband barcode to the medications at bedside dosing in a hospital or nursing home, securing access control at a concert or sporting event, matching luggage to passengers on airliners—these are familiar ways in which barcodes play a serious,…

UDI and Barcode Verification

Now that the FDA Final Rule is enacted, the time of UDI implementation has arrived. UDI will: Standardize the identification of medical devices in a globally harmonized way Improve public health initiatives to optimize automated systems Reduce medical device related injuries and deaths via improved device recalls Eliminate (or at least reduce) inaccurate or incomplete…

My Barcode Does Not Scan–Why?

Your barcode does not scan. Whomever it was that notified you, however and whenever the bad news arrived, it is a stressful surprise.  What happened? What do I do next? Scanners—especially imager scanners, are very aggressive and tolerant of bad barcodes.  Older laser scanners are less forgiving. The first thing to do is get live…

The Ultimate Symbology

 In our recent article Why Are There Different Kinds of Barcodes?  we posed the question (rather rhetorically) “…isn’t there one symbology that could do it all?” As a matter of fact  there is a new symbology that is moving in that direction. It is called Ultracode. A draft of the international technical specification is completed,…

Why Do Barcodes Misread?

So much technology is involved with barcodes, from designing and printing them to scanning and decoding them, it is often overlooked that this is as much art as science. Sometimes there is not a readily evident technological explanation for why a barcode misreads—there is always a reason but it can be difficult to tease out…

How Do Barcode Scanners Work?

A simple enough question and it leads to a qualifying question—do you really want to know? So we’ll start with the simplest answer: a barcode scanner works on the basis of reflectivity, or more precisely on reflective differences in the barcode. Still interested? OK. Barcode scanners decode linear barcodes by finding the edges of the…

Barcode 201: How do Barcodes Work?

How Do Barcodes Work? If you refer to all barcodes as UPC’s, this article won’t be interesting to you. But if you know that all barcodes are not UPC’s, it may interest you to know that different symbologies encode the data very differently, and I’m not talking about how the data itself is arranged: that’s…