March 06, 2006

Audrey Gets a Barcode Scanner

I've been working on a kitchen recipe/inventory/shopping-list application off-and-on for about a year now, with the idea of using an Audrey as the hardware. To really make this thing useful, I wanted a UPC barcode reader, so I can register when I purchase or discard grocery items.

I bought a CueCat scanner for about $8 on eBay, and thought I had a winner, since it's a USB device.

CueCat Barcode scanner

I plugged it into the Audrey, but it didn't work. Turns out the Audrey wasn't intended to support generic USB devices. I was bummin'. The project went on the back-burner.

About a month ago, I had some time on my hands, so I dusted off the ol' Audrey, and tried again. This time, though, I overwrote Audrey's operating system with one that supports USB devices. I plugged in the scanner again, but still no luck.

After some fooling around, I found that I needed to tell the Audrey to look for the scanner as a USB mouse (for anyone trying this, use the "wm popup" menu" by hitting Paste+Enter). Viola! The CueCat now reads barcodes like a charm.

So now I'm back to writing my kitchen inventory application. I originally wanted to call it "Chefmate", but apparently someone beat me to it. So Amy suggested "Kitch 'n' Bitch" (she doesn't like the Audrey, apparently). I love it.

I'll post more progress here.

Posted by Kevin at March 6, 2006 11:51 AM