FWIW: All of the card-readers I've tested (Square, Paypal) require their
particular apps to "read"...there's no generic output that's readable by
At least on iOS, access to the camera is via an API only accessible by an
app, which means no generic browser based access to the camera output
either. If you were to write an iOS app, of course, all bets are off...you
could do what you wanted with the camera, including barcode reading.
Android is much less locked down than iOS, but I'm not as familiar with it.
If I were doing this, I'd look into using a bluetooth scanner in combo with
the tablet. In that case, the scanner just presents as if it were a
keyboard, passing the data off to the tablet just as if it were keyed in.
That would work in-browser, in app, or where ever. We're considering this
model as a possibility for some services in our new building, with the
hangup being desensitization of the materials after checkout.
On Wed, Jan 23, 2013 at 11:34 AM, Stephen Francoeur <
[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> We're looking into ways that tablets might be used by library staff
> assisting patrons in a long line at the circ desk. With a tablet, an
> additional staff person could pick folks off the line who might have things
> that can be handled on a properly outfitted tablet.
> I am wondering if anyone has any examples of a library using the camera on
> a tablet to scan barcodes on library materials (for check out or check in)
> or if anyone has used one of those magnetic stripe readers that you can
> attach to some tablets (such as the Square Register for the iPad which can
> be used to process credit cards)? I'm sure it's been done with a netbook;
> we're solely interested in doing this with a tablet.
> We're trying to see if we can install the GUI for Ex Libris Aleph on a
> tablet running Microsoft RT. If this might work on tablets running Android
> or iOS, that would be interesting as well.
> Any examples or thoughts about this would be most welcome.
> Stephen Francoeur
> User Experience Librarian
> Newman Library
> Room 516
> Baruch College
> 151 E. 25th Street
> New York, NY 10010
> [log in to unmask]