The good people at Motorola recently reminded us of a milestone worth noting - the 35th anniversary of commercial use of the UPC bar code. At precisely 8:06 a.m. on June 26, 1974, the first bar code was scanned at a Marsh supermarket in Troy, Ohio. The item? A pack of Wrigley's Juicy Fruit gum. Since then, the bar code has totally revolutionized inventory tracking and management, not only in retail but in virtually every industry. And the bar code story is far from over. This ubiquitous symbol "still has a lot of runway in front of it," says Bob Sanders, vice president, Motorola Enterprise Mobility Solutions. He notes the increasing use of 2-D or two dimensional bar codes that are able to hold much more information than traditional linear symbols. Sanders also predicts that radio frequency identification (RFID) will continue to gain traction as a valuable technology to supplement, rather than replace, bar code scanning. (Read more at http://www.business.motorola.com/barcodescanners/35years/index.html.)
What have been the most important contributions of bar codes in your business and what applications can you see in the future? Join the discussion!
- Jean V. Murphy, Editorial Director, SupplyChainBrain
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