A quick bit of advice: Search this forum for "Serial Port" and you might find a few articles. We have had a few cases of specialty devices through a serial port, usually based on one or the other type of bar-code scanners. So I know it is possible. In fact, "Bar Code" would also be a good search string.
If you are not familiar with it yet, the forum search facility is in the thin menu-bar that is near the top of the page, 3rd from the right.