Inventor Joe Woodland drew the first bar code in the sand in Miami Beach, decades before technology could bring his vision to life. Joe woodland was after some code sort that could be printed on groceries and scanned so that supermarket checkout queues can be disposed of quickly and stocktaking would be simplified. He had this idea from Morse Code’s dots and dashes. While he was thinking of this on a beach, he poked his four fingers into the sand and drew four lines. This gave him the idea of the bar code in a very primitive way. That is how Woodland invented the barcode.
Later on, Woodland and Silver decided the “bull’s-eye” (concentric circles ) was the better symbol because it could be read accurately from any angle. In 1949 Woodland and Silver file for a patent describing both the linear (borrowing elements from Morse code and movie soundtrack technologies) and bull’s-eye barcode systems which were finally granted in 1952.
On June 26, 1974, the first item marked with the Universal Product Code (UPC) was scanned at the checkout of Troy’s Marsh Supermarket. The committee of Universal Product Identification Code (established in 1973) was more interested in finding a way to introduce a Universal Product Code, a bar code of some description that would be common to all goods, imprinted by the manufacturers and retailers. The code would carry information about the nature of the product, the company that made it, and so on. it had been calculated that only ten digits were needed; the bar code had to be readable from any direction and at speed;
In fact, bar code technology was almost made for companies like Walmart, which deal with thousands of goods that need to be cataloged and tracked. The bar code took off in the grocery and retail business in the 1980s.
What Is Barcode
Bars & Stripes was first introduced to the market in 1991 by Tippecanoe Systems, Inc. Since then, Bars & Stripes has gone on to be one of the industry’s most popular barcode software applications enabling small businesses to adopt barcoding with minimal expense.
A barcode is an encoded image, usually displayed with black and white lines of varying width that contains vital information easily readable by a machine. There are many types of such as one dimensional and two-dimensional barcodes, that determine the exact type of data that can be encoded unto it
Types Of Barcode
There are hundreds of barcode configurations available but there are about 30 major formats that are commonly used today based on the linear numeric, linear alpha-numeric, and 2-dimensional designs. In every barcode, there is a number. If the scanner fails to read it, information about the product can be obtained by this number.
A checksum is a standardized portion of some barcode formats which is used to verify that the information scanned from the code is correct. In a linear configuration, this is always the number at the far right of the bar and the scanner will perform a series of calculations on the digits that proceed it and compare that result to the last digit, which should be the same.
1D Barcode (Linear )
There are two types of linear barcodes. One which has Numbers only and others contain a combination of numbers and alphabetic characters (letters only)-Alpha-numeric barcodes. Both of these types are considered one-dimensional barcodes also called 1D.
They can only store information horizontally from left to right. Linear barcodes can hold anywhere between 8-25 characters. The drawback is the limited amount of space available in 1D . They are the simplest types of codes that can be read by any scanner rapidly.
UPC and EAN code types are linear barcodes and are very popular.
UPC codes-12-digit UPC codes (UPC-A) contain basic information about the manufacturer’s identity and the identification number for the product,
EAN codes – 13 digit EAN codes are used to identify consumer products worldwide and are designed for Point-of-Sale (POS) scanning
2D Barcode (Two-Dimensional Barcode)
2-dimensional barcodes-also called 2D barcodes, are in the shape of a square or rectangle and contain many small dots arranged in a unique pattern. The main advantage of 2D barcodes is that they can hold much larger amounts of data in a small space, and they remain legible even when printed into a product in small sizes. QR code is just one example of a 2D barcode.
Two-dimensional barcode symbologies are graphical images that store information on both the horizontal and vertical planes. 2D barcodes encrypt data horizontally and vertically, which allows for more versatile use. An added advantage is of encoding images or links into a barcode.. This design enables 2D barcodes to encode up 4296 characters and 7089 digits.
2D barcodes are often used in conjunction with smartphones. The user can read a 2D barcode with the camera on a phone equipped with a 2D barcode reader, which has an image scanner. 2D barcodes are more secure, as the information stored in a 2D code is easily encrypted. There are several types of 2D barcode symbologies but most used is QR barcode.QR codes, which stands for ‘quick-response code,’ are among the most widely recognized two-dimensional barcodes.