QR Codes

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QR Codes ("Quick Reference" Codes) are essentially 2-dimensional barcodes. They can contain hundreds of times more data than conventional 1-dimensional barcodes [1]. Initially created for use in the shipping industry, they are gaining popularity for marketing to people with smart-phones. Many consumer-oriented QR codes point users to a website address, although other types of data storage are possible. Generally, users scan the QR Code with a scanning device (for example, the camera on a smart phone), and they are automatically directed to a website or the application specialized to handle the code's data. The idea is to allow users to avoid the hassle of remembering or manually reproducing long, precise strings of data.

Uses in Libraries

Creating QR Codes

  • Google Chart Tools allows you to create QR codes for any link, or (with a little programming know-how) automatically generate codes on the fly using their API. For a quick QR code using this service, visit the following link (and substitute your URL for "libsuccess.org"): http://chart.apis.google.com/chart?chs=200x200&cht=qr&chl=http://libsuccess.org. QR codes also allow for a certain margin of error, which can be used to create some more artistic QR codes. For examples and a guide on this process visit [4]

Easily found on Pinterest, many libraries are using QR codes to lead to trailers of popular books like Ellen Hopkins books and "Audrey, Wait". Trailers can be found at [5].

More Info on QR Codes

Ashford, Robin. "QR codes and academic libraries: Reaching mobile users." College & Research Libraries News, November 2010. [6]

Rigby, Lex. "QR Codes in Libraries and Higher Education." Just Another Dent in the Damage, 26 March 2009. Web.

Walsh, Andrew. QR tags and mobile 'phones in the library. Web.

Walsh, Andrew. "Extreme makeover: Transforming the face of your Library Service." QR tags and 'mobile phones in the library, 19 October 2009. Web.