As is the case with many technologies, especially the mobile variety, the Japanese have been ahead of the rest of us for a while on something that has only recently begun to catch fire everywhere else: “QR Codes.” (QR=quick response.) If you’re not familiar, they are 2D barcodes that represent strings of letters, numbers and other characters. While you might not have heard of them, chances are you’ve seen them in places like the outside of UPS or FedEx packages, which allow the contents to be accurately tracked.
The codes can contain everything from URLs to ready-made SMS messages to electronic contact cards and can be created quite easily. They’re being used more and more often in physical media such as magazine ads.
They have been around for nearly two decades, but they are just now taking off in popularity, thanks to the new generation of smartphones. For instance, once you download a QR code-scanning app, all you have to do is point your camera at a physical code to relay that digital information instantly to your phone.
The marketer in me has created a QR code that will take you from your iPhone directly to our new app so that you can download it without having to type a thing. The brave new world of digital technology marches on. (The QR code below will take you to the external link for the Library’s app within the iTunes App Store.)