posted this on October 13, 2011 07:39 pm
QR codes (Quick Response) are a type of matrix barcode which can store a relatively large amount of data in comparison to common linear barcodes. You've probably seen these images appear in magazine advertisements, fliers, t-shirts, or even a billboard. These codes are used to store data (URLs, email addresses, vcards, etc...) which can be interpreted by optical computer devices using QR reader software. When a code is translated it is typically automatically acted upon; for instance a URL code will trigger the browser of a smartphone to navigate to the embedded URL.
QR codes are becoming a very popular way to create a physical hyperlink to information on the internet in our rapidly-expanding mobile culture. To capitalize on this increasingly common activity, CollegiateLink allows for an event to display a QR code that will link back to its details page. The code is published on the event screen so that anyone who has management access to view the event information can download it and share it in their own manner.
QR codes can be used in a variety of ways to help promote events. Because they are still novel, many people will simply test the code with their smartphone to see what it is; meaning that you may simply print the code off and post around campus to see if people use it. Other mediums that lend themselves to QR are print, textile, computer monitors, and projection. Here are some ideas of where you can post a QR code:
Campus newspapers or other circulating publications
What you'll need to get started with QR codes:
A device that can capture the QR image for processing by a QR Reader software application. Many smartphones are equipped with very good cameras which can easily view and process the image.
A QR code reader application which can interpret the information in the code. There are many free or inexpensive applications out there for smartphones and other internet connected devices that are designed specifically read the codes, and store them for later reference. A web-search for "mobile QR reader application" will provide links to several readers. Take a few for a spin and see which one you like the most.
To make QR codes of your own you'll need to use a QR code generator. CollegiateLink automatically takes care of the generation automatically for events, but you may want to use a web-based generator to create codes for your other websites or information. A web-search for the term "QR generator" will provide links to several free generator services.
QR codes rely on the ability for a software program to distinguish between the dark and light areas of the image, therefore high contrast colors (Black/White, Black/Yellow, etc...) are best. it is also best that a code be displayed in a well-lit area so that people using devices without their own light can get a good shot of the code.
Be careful about printing a code on something that will be around for a long time (t-shirts for instance); just like a website, if the content changes location on the web your QR code link with break.
Remember that QR codes are not usually encrypted in any way, therefore the information that you store in the code should be considered public.