The Digitizer is an automated vision table. Designed and produced from scratch for the fine folks of Mirto. It analyzes, measures, digitizes, scans, OCRs and stores analogue mail as fast as possible.

Picture yourself... 

...writing a love letter to your beloved one: you pick out a bright red envelope and stamp it with your favorite stamp design. Awesome. Because in these digital times, analog mail is still the best thing, right? Now do this 100.000 times. Fun's over.

Manually handling analog mail is not as easy as it seems. When the numbers grow big, the handling becomes hard. This is exactly why the Mirto people knocked on our door for help. They wanted a smart scanning table that weighs, measures, scans, OCRs and understands the letters that get put on it. Flexible enough for special mail formats that don't get scanned by conveyor belt technology and fast enough to handle mid-to-large-sized volumes.

The digitizer project was born. 

Step 1: weld a table

When crafting new technology we like to go all the way back to the drawing board. So we contacted Werner and asked him to weld together a hard-core custom steel table with integrated mounts for a balance, a camera, a barcode scanner and whatnot. We might as well do it right from the beginning.

We asked a lot: a stylish black design, great movability, a simple interface and ... barn doors!

Step 2: peripheral research

We were about to write software that integrates with a lot of individual hardware devices: a barcode scanner, a machine vision camera, an industrial scale and an entire backing store and processing infrastructure. Every engineer will tell you: this is the product development phase they love the most. The buy-test-and-break-phase. This is the time when you fill your shopping cart and see what works and what doesn't. And if it doesn't, you take a soldering iron and see if you can make it work before you throw it out.

Who would have figured the LED flicker frequency interferes with the way the prism in a barcode scanner works?

Step 3: software, lots of software

Article in progress, please come back soon ;-)