At work I’ve got a few different bits of equipment that print out important information with thermal receipt printers.
At the moment I take the printouts over to a computer, enter in the data from them and a little program I’ve written performs alsorts of magic with the data. I’ve been thinking for a while that it’d be nice if I could connect the machines to the computer and have the computer do all the data entry automatically. As a fail safe I’d still like the machines to be directly connected to the printers, so i guess I’m looking for a RS232 wire tap. I’m thinking of something along the lines of:
Now I am aware that there are a few comercial RS232 data tapping solutions out there (http://www.datalinkcom.net/accessories/dl9pcdt.htm, http://www.stratusengineering.com/EZTap.html, etc). However I fancy having a play with my arduino, and once the basics are up and running I might expand it to include the SD card shield so I can data log onto the arduino as well (so if for example if I leave the machines on over night, I don’t have to leave the PC on overnight - the PC can just get the latest log files off the arduino in the morning).
I’ve had a little browse around the internet and found a website detailing how to do a basic wire tap: http://www.lammertbies.nl/comm/cable/RS-232-spy-monitor.html. So I guess I can get the hardware part sorted, my next problem is programming the arduino. I’ve had no experience in programming serial connections before - could somebody point me in the right direction?
Also if anybody has any thoughts or suggestions for the project then I’d really appreciate it…