Hey All -
I'm sure most people here are more or less familiar with the CueCat barcode scanner and the fiasco that went with it a couple of years ago ... I have a couple here at home, and you can get them on ebay for $5-$10 or so. Easily modified to spit out normal barcodes, and many are already pre-modified.
The only hassle is that they're tied to a computer to use, either via keyboard wedge, or USB. Who wants to lug around a laptop when scanning your bookshelf ?
So I'm thinking it couldn't be too hard to build a small AVR interface to it, battery powered, making the CueCat a portable device. This is something that would accept the CC keyboard interface, and store all barcodes in ram/eeprom/whatever.
You then plug it into your computer (serial, keyboard again, usb, whatever) and hit a button. It would then stream all the barcodes down to the PC. Push and hold the button to wipe the eeprom.
The USB version would probably be the easier one to hack (I don't have one so I can't check) if you can get the bitstream before it enters the supposed USB interface. Otherwise you have to decode the keyboard protocol for the keyboard-wedge version - it stuff keystroke scancodes down the wire.
So, has anyone done anything like this ? Any ideas ?