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The Importance of Accurate Data Input Devices


Accuracy of Data Input

There are many data input devices available in the world today, and each one has its own unique benefits and applications. Accuracy is perhaps the most important aspect of data input and computer system designers have created products with the consideration in mind. Most people are familiar with the mouse and keyboard as being the main data input devices. The mouse and keyboard allows a person to point and click on an object on the screen and type in different characters using the keyboard. This is a very versatile configuration and allows the computer user to perform a wide variety of important tasks using only these two input devices. Many businesses may require a greater level of efficiency and speed than can typically be offered by the mouse and keyboard. One of the most common examples is the barcode scanner that you find in grocery stores. Each item sold in the store has a special code attached to its label that allows the cashier to easily bring up its price and description. You can imagine the amount of time it would take if the cashier had to look up each item and it is obvious that this would be a very inefficient system. The system’s accuracy can be checked by the customer after they are given a receipt. The barcode scanner allows the store to run much more effectively and provide a greater level of service to its customers.  There are many other examples of how data input devices can greatly improve the productivity of a business.

Printed questionnaires are found commonly in magazines and on standardized tests, and require a special type of data input device called an optical data reader or OMR. Optical data readers can be used to scan a document and make sense of the patterns it finds within the document. A common example of the use of optical data readers is in standardized tests such as the GMAT. The test taker will fill in a bubble on the testing form that corresponds to the answer they believe is correct. Their test form will then be put through a machine that is able to read the answers and score the test. The test takers score, and possibility to be accepted into grad school depends on the accuracy of this data input device. OMR devices are also used to interpret certain keywords or phrases in long documents. The software can be programmed to read a certain typesetting by simply scanning the document. The accuracy of long documents is important because it often involves copyrighted work that must be displayed without modifications.

Telephone surveys are a common way for business to gather information about their customers. Businesses are able to use voice recognition systems to interpret the customer’s responses over the phone line. The machine will see the person’s voice in a digital format and will be able to make an interpretation of their response. Accuracy is extremely important to the business because these responses can lead to changes in their business practices. Voice recognition is also used by polling firms, and their findings are considered very valuable by the candidates and their contributors.

The use of automatic teller machines has created technological advancements in the way bank checks are used. Today, a magnetic ink is used on the checks to distinguish routing and account numbers. This ink can be read by Magnetic Ink Character Recognition (MICR) devices. These devices are used inside ATMs as well as at the face to face teller stations within the bank. The accuracy of these machines is vital to both the bank and the customer. Discrepancies can create big losses for the bank or have a negative impact on the customer. Inaccurate data could cause the bank to lose customers and establish a negative reputation.

Retail stores make use of the bar code scanner. Every item in the store has a unique label that can be read by a scanner. This allows the cashier to process data unique to each item, such as price and product number. By scanning items the cashier is able to be much more efficient at processing orders. Data accuracy is an important part of bar code scanners. The designers of these systems need make sure the scanner reads the labels correctly. If they are read improperly it could lead to delays in order processing and hurt the reputation of the store.

In summary, the accuracy of data input is a highly important factor to consider in the design of various hardware devices. There are many applications for specialized data input devices, but without near perfect accuracy their benefit fades quickly. Many industries make use of voice recognition, optical data readers, bar code scanners, magnetic ink regconition, and a vast array of other equally useful input devices. These devices are becoming increasingly common in modern industry and many businesses are making use of their ability to boost the performance and efficiency in the workplace. 


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