bank cardThe cash machine hasn’t moved very far since my first post on the subject, but I’m still confident it is possible to get up and running for the event.

Here’s a brief bit about the pitfalls I’ve come up against.

Firstly I really want to avoid having to do any electronics as my knowledge is limited and it’s also

  • Safer (we need this machine to pass a safety test)
  • quicker and easier
  • reuse the components
  • easier scripting

So the main unit is an old Del printer, unfortunately there is no drivers for mac hence my choice to use and old PC. Using my old PC has the advantage that it doesn’t matter if it gets damaged. The only disadvantage is that to get the pin-whole camera to record each transaction I would use the very simple Apple actionscript on my mac. I’m sure there is a relatively easy way on PC but i’ll need to find and learn how to use it.

Flash has a print function that I thought I could utilise essentially printing a blank page which will be our already printed money. This function however brings up the print dialogue box before printing. So I went on the search to find a way of getting around it seems a few people want the ability to do this, it was suggested it can be done in a web browser using JavaScript(which Flash can communicate with easily). However I still haven’t found a solution that worked and believe there may not be one that doesn’t require knowledge way above my skill set. I did find out that if I had Internet Explorer 5, it has the capability to print direct to default printer without the dialogue box, This was a security issue.

It amuses me to think of malicious web designer making a link that when clicked would print what ever the desired, if you thought pop up are annoying what about having your printer print hundreds of pages of adverts.

So at the moment I have one trick I’ve not tested, but if that doesn’t work it looks like i’m going to have to bite the bullet and brush up on my electronics.

One thing that needs to be produced for this to work is our QR code bank card

Bank card

The card will be screen printed on one side of cardboard and then have a printer label on the back for the individual QR code.

I was thinking we would print a few generic ones like Mr or Mrs, Miss Customer, But how about ones we send to people for advertising or those that we know the names for, is there a way to leave it blank and print/draw/stencil names on?

and should the bank cards be from all the same bank?

Any thoughts or ideas are welcome

Hi all, Martin suggested I blog about one of my main focuses for Project ‘Shop’, The Cash Machine.

Cash Machine

Right, I’m not great with explaining but here goes, I’ll start with the tech

Components to build the Machine

  • Flash – Actionscript will be the backbones controlling code of the machine
  • old printer – yes we will printing money, well not quite but the components should work well for the dispenser.
  • old usb keyboard – this i will likely hack to use as the button interface as its easy to integrate with flash
  • my old PC – the hardware
  • webcam – to read the cards (using QR codes)
  • pin-hole camera via suitable capture dongle (every customers transaction is recorded, think it will be interesting seeing how people interact)

Later on I will explain more about the ins and outs, but for now i will leave with a question…

So why does Project ‘Shop’ need a cash machine?
well other than it will be a big challenge for me personally allowing me to push my knowledge of certain technologies.
I think it can enhance the ‘Shop’ experience on a few levels.

  • Another outlet to bring discussion about the ideas of ‘money’.
  • PLAY PLAY PLAY – especially for the younger visitors who haven’t came into the world of electronic money yet (maybe it’s these younger ‘customers’ that we really are aiming at, to get them thinking of money and our monetary system in maybe a more informed and responsible way.

Referenced Thoughts

  • “feed me stray kittens” - American Psycho
  • Cash Machine – Hard Fi