Wikipedia defines it this way:
"A QR Code is a matrix barcode (or two-dimensional code), readable by QR scanners, mobiles phones with camera, and smartphones. The code consists of black modules arranged in a square pattern on white background. The information encoded can be text, URL or other data.Common in Japan, where it was created by Japanese corporation Denso-Wave in 1994, the QR code is one of the most popular types of two-dimensional barcodes. QR is the acronym of Quick Response, as the creator intended the code to allow its contents to be decoded at high speed."
A QR code can be read by any mobile phone that has a camera to scan and process its information. It provides a quick and easy way to collect data - for example, contact information about people you meet at conferences or the addresses of useful wikis and websites.
Libraries are exploring the use of QR codes. Sacramento Public Library has a Text 4 Answers page which allows patrons to "Use our QR Code to add our text reference service to your phone's contact list. First, download I-nigma's free QR Code scanner to your mobile device."
Half Hollow Hills Community Library posts QR codes on end stacks as subject guides.
Patrons of San Diego State University Library are advised that they may use QR codes to:
- Download contact information to your address book with a Vcard
- Initiate a call on your phone
- Visit a mobile website
- Display a message on your phone
Thanks to a link from Cathy Nelson, I was able to access QR-Code Generator, enter the URL of my blog, and create a unique QR. The resulting bit of informational art is now displayed at the top right of each page.
I'll definitely add the QR code to my next batch of business cards. It would be fun to print it on a button, t-shirt or mug, also.
I have a feeling that we may be seeing a great deal more of these intriguing matrices in the future, at work, in the marketplace and in our daily lives.