A barcode is an optical, machine-readable, representation of data; the data usually describes something about the object that carries the barcode. Originally barcodes systematically represented data by varying the widths and spacings of parallel lines, and may be referred to as linear or one-dimensional (1D). Later two-dimensional (2D) codes were developed, using rectangles, dots, hexagons and other geometric patterns in two dimensions, usually called barcodes although they do not use bars as such. Barcodes originally were scanned by special optical scanners called barcode readers. Later applications software became available for devices that could read images, such as smartphones with cameras.
Barcodes such as the UPC have become a ubiquitous element of modern civilization, as evidenced by their enthusiastic adoption by stores around the world; most items other than fresh produce from a grocery store now have UPC barcodes. They can also be used to keep track of objects and people; they are used to keep track of rental cars, airline luggage, nuclear waste, registered mail, express mail and parcels. Barcoded tickets allow the holder to enter sports arenas, cinemas, theatres, fairgrounds, and transportation, and are used to record the arrival and departure of vehicles from rental facilities etc. This can allow proprietors to identify duplicate or fraudulent tickets more easily. Barcodes are widely used in shop floor control applications software where employees can scan work orders and track the time spent on a job.
inFORMS Decisions iBAR is an IBM i Scale-able Barcode Generation tool for the AS400/iseries. IBM i native users now have the ability to scale barcodes and spool barcode enabled documents, and to output to industry standard HP PCL cut sheet and continuous form label printers iBar is now capable of producing industries’ most popular bar code symboligies, including QR, 3of9, EAN, Datamatrix and more.