Current System Time Follow

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Hi there. I just started a Summer internship and have been tasked with some barcoding projects. I should probably note that I have slightly more than zero coding experience. My education is primarily in mechanical engineering, not software.

There is one issue I could use a hand with. I need to generate a single barcode to be printed and used at multiple workstations. This barcode, when scanned, needs to output the current system time, tab one space, and then output the current system time + four hours. These need to be in 24hr format (ie 11:00 and 15:00). I tried using the time entry for the source. I found this only encodes the text of the system time at the time of label creation. I also tried to use the integrated VBscript tool as the source using the different time-related functions. This also yielded the system time during label creation.

How would I go about making this work?

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Ian Cummings
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If I understand you correctly; you're not wanting the time and offset time at the moment of design or even the moment of printing, but rather at time of scanning the barcode? Am I correct in my understanding here?

If the above understanding is correct then this is more of a data capture solution that you need rather than to do with label design and printing. I would suggest that you encode a nominated character or keyword which the barcode reader (if it is intelligent enough) or the data capture software will pounce upon and substitute it with the data you want in the format desired.

An example could be where you encode "#TIME# #TIMEOFFSET+4#" into the barcode, or a shortend version if this gives you a barcode that is too long. Whenever the inteligent barcode reader (with built in clock) or data capture software sees there mumonics, it automatically replaces them with the actual data wanted. You will need to speak to your barcode reading experts for specific solutions, but I would expect that this would be the sort of thing they would come up with.
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Ian,

Thanks for replying so quickly. Yes, you are correct about needing the timestamp output at the time of scanning. I tried the text recommendation that you posted. The reader only recognizes it as pure text. We use a Honeywell 4600r scanner and another similar (don't have it handy) that handles curved surfaces. I have looked through the users guide and don't see any reference to a timestamp command. I have talked to several others in the organization and it appears this timestamp functionality is pretty desired.

I have also tried using Excel as a database source and running the functions in there. Every attempt at extracting volitile data from a field is met with an empty/blank response.

If you have any additional ideas, I would love to hear them.
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Ian Cummings
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My solution is still the same. The idea is that the data you encode in the barcode is used as a marker for either the scanner or data capture software to substitute with the time code formats you want. A barcode itself has no ability to store the current time. It is the device or software that the barcode data is read into that can do this.

You will find user and programming documentation for your barcode reader at the below link. Look for a feature to allow data substitutions. If the scanner does not include an RTC (Real Time Clock) then it will be up to the data capture software, which the scanner feeds the barcode data into, to perform the time code substitution. this might evolve some level of scripting.

http://www.honeywellaidc.com/en-US/Pages/Product.aspx?category=Area%20Imager&cat=HSM&pid=4600r

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