Thread: CueCat - any other uses?
January 12th, 2004, 05:39 PM #1
CueCat - any other uses?
I have a CueCat - you know, those things that plug in between your keyboard and computer and you use to scan CueCat barcodes that would be found in different things - and was wondering if there were any other uses for it.
Here is an example of a CueCat barcode:
Since the service went under (for more info go to the CueCat site @ http://www.digitalconvergence.com) I was wondering if there was some mod/program that allowed me to use it like a normal bar code scanner or something even unrelated to a barcode scanner application.
Just curious as to what I might use this for. If I can't use it for anything else, I'll probably just toss it.
Last edited by davidamarkley; January 12th, 2004 at 05:41 PM.
January 12th, 2004, 05:45 PM #2
January 12th, 2004, 05:47 PM #3
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January 12th, 2004, 05:51 PM #4
Awesome... The second link Atomic Rooster had was perfect...
January 12th, 2004, 06:11 PM #5
I just bought one of these (I paid $4.00 for it so...) to help me to catalogue my books. Basically anything that has a bar code can be read and tracked for you.
You can use it as a shopping wand: Every time you run out of milk or peanut butter, swipe the carton
The CueCat could also be used to catalog books, CDs and movies or for taking a quick inventory of your personal possessions. You could set up a personal lending library, too. Swipe a CD or a movie before it leaves the house and you will always remember who borrowed what.
Thanks to its built-in encryption, the CueCat could become a secure computer passcard reader. Instead of logging on with a username and password, a bar code is scanned before access is granted to a machine.
Others have turned the CueCat into a remote control and -- by removing the internal circuit board and replacing it with a pair of batteries –- a small flashlight.
Enjoy!They say technology slows down for no one. I know it outruns my wallet. I figure its because my wallet isn't light enough yet.
TechIMO Folding@home Team #111 - Crunching for the cure!
dulce bellum inexpertis
January 12th, 2004, 06:43 PM #6
Well, I've got different software from different people, but nothing I've tried is working...
I've got a PS2 version of the :Cue:Cat. But, I have a USB mouse and keyboard. (Don't know if that matters or not.)
I plugged the scanner in, and the red light comes on, so I know it's getting power, but when I scan a barcode, nothing happens in any of the programs I use.
Is there some sort of driver or something that I need to make it work?
O/S: Win XP Pro
I restarted and that didn't seem to help anything.
January 12th, 2004, 07:00 PM #7
I've got a bunch of these around my house You may not be recieving anything because of how you have to scan the barcodes. I thought the scanning was "finicky" (no pun intended) The output from the scanner is encrypted with the numbers you scanned. Are you using catnap? I used that on my computers, and it unencrypted it.
Try scanning it over and over. Do you have a piece of paper that came with the scanners? It has a guide in it. If you don't, I can take a picture of it for you. (don't have a scanner) It talks about proper scanning.
(Side Note: These probably tanked pretty quick, as beneath that cute plastic surface, lurked a very major problem: spyware!)Back Online! http://rhd.dyndns.org <-- The History Site (Admin)
January 12th, 2004, 07:03 PM #8
Yeah, I've tried using catnip, catscratch, java programs, perl programs, you name it, and it still doesn't do anything when I scan a barcode.
If you could take a picture of that manual/guide, I'd appreciate it!
I'm looking for some sort of driver for the device, but haven't found one that works yet...
Still looking though!
January 12th, 2004, 07:06 PM #9
Quote ; spyware
That why you "declaw" the Cuecat. I bought mine already "modified" but its a very easy fix.
Go here www.cexx.org/cuecat.htm
BTW Ill bet all of the programs you tried required you to have the modified Cuecat for them to work. Basically you were sending encrypted information to the programs instead of the clear data they were expecting.
Corrected link. Sorry
Last edited by no1_vern; January 12th, 2004 at 08:40 PM.They say technology slows down for no one. I know it outruns my wallet. I figure its because my wallet isn't light enough yet.
TechIMO Folding@home Team #111 - Crunching for the cure!
dulce bellum inexpertis
January 12th, 2004, 07:13 PM #10
I was thinking that these software programs bypassed the need to neuter it, and worked the same as the mod did, just without having to cut a trace or solder a jumper wire. I'll just go ahead and neuter the :Cat, and then let you know if that works...
EDIT: Your link is borked BTW.
Last edited by davidamarkley; January 12th, 2004 at 07:16 PM.
January 12th, 2004, 07:38 PM #11
Here's a couple of emails I've saved from my school's compsci list:
If you have a CueCat Barcode Scanner (used to be free from Radio Shack, possibly still is?) I've written a little hack in Java to decode the output and print the barcode type and number in a window. If you're interested, let me know and I'll post a copy of the source.
You can also easily modify the source to print the serial number from you CueCat Scanner. (You didn't know the serial number is sent everytime you scan a code, did you?!!! Makes your activities easy to track if you're using the online service provided along with
Since this is in Java, and doesn't require the creation of a device, as does the Linux decoder, you don't have to be root to use it!
Here's the java classes for the CueCat barcode reader. I've also included the source code. Note: you need to pass special options to the java compilder to get this code to run because of circular class dependencies.
I haven't figured out how to get this to compile with the command line java compiler, but it works great with Borland's JBuilder. (I highly recommend JBuilder.)
Also, I haven't taken the time to package this into a nice neat jar file.
To run this file, unzip the cuecat.zip file. This contains a directory called cuecat. DO NOT CD INTO THIS DIRECTORY. Open a command window and cd to the directory where you unzipped cuecat to. When you show the directory listing (dir) you should
see the cuecat directory. Now type:
The program should run.
I think I still have these zips, let me know if you'd like them.
January 12th, 2004, 08:34 PM #12
OK, well... I tried neutering my CueCat and still it doesn't do anything...
Is there some sort of driver I need? I found a couple, but windows doesn't find any hardware info in the driver files...
I'm stuck ATM, and don't know what I need to do.
So, just to recap, these are the things I've tried:
I plugged in the CueCat, and restarted Win XP.
Tried using software such as Catnip, Catscratch, CueDog, etc.
I tried installing a couple different drivers for the CueCat to work in Win2K/XP and still nothing.
I don't know what the problem is, but it's like the computer doesn't even know that the :Cat is plugged in. It's like the software is waiting for input, but isn't getting any.
Is there anyone who has actually tried this, and got it to work as just a plain old barcode reader?
January 12th, 2004, 08:53 PM #13
Hit up iNeb if I remember correctly he is the supertripledoublelivenerd of all Cuecat mods...
January 12th, 2004, 09:02 PM #14
I might add---gave a Cue to a female friend entranced in chatting with "special friends"---told her nothing about it but that it would "enhance" her chatting experience if used correctly, having its special unique shape, design and computer interface she is still inquiring how it might be used..."ahhhhhahahah" is my response---"you aint figured it out yet?!"
January 12th, 2004, 09:27 PM #15
Ok, I'll try to PM him... But I thought he was banned? I guess I'll try anyway. I haven't found anything else yet...
Yeah, she wasn't a blond perhaps?
January 12th, 2004, 09:32 PM #16
Well, I couldn't send him a PM, so I contacted him through his website... I'll just hope he gets it...
January 12th, 2004, 09:59 PM #17
OK, Hold the phones!!
I got it to work...
Seems that you need a PS/2 keyboard plugged into the other end of the CueCat's keyboard wedge in order for it to work.
As I mentioned before, I had a USB mouse and keyboard. I tried it on a Win 2K machine with also a USB mouse and keyboard still nothing.
So, then I got one of those USB>PS/2 converters, and plugged my Logitech USB keyboard into the CueCat's wire and Voila! It worked!
Thanks to all who replied, and thanks for your patience!
I just hope that maybe this thread will help someone that runs into the same problem I did.
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