Visiting campus via bar code

When I got my most recent copy of Hilltopics, the Bradley University alumni magazine, there on the back was a little, square, black and white code, instructing me to scan it with my phone to tour the new basketball facility with an alumni. Never one to turn down the opportunity to scan a barcode with my phone (it even makes that fun *beep* sound!), I gave it a scan and within seconds I was watching a YouTube video of my alma mater! Very cool!

These little scanning codes, called QR codes, are sort of “Do It Yourself” bar codes that you can create and link to any webpage you’d like. All someone has to do is scan the code with a generic barcode scanner app on their smart device and Voila! they are on on the page you want to direct them to. I realize this is more along the lines of technology than social media, but it has a definite social media use. Plus, the geek in me can’t resist sharing about new, nifty, simple technology like this.

Think of the places you can add one of these codes? Print one on the back of your business card, linked to an online version of your resume or your LinkedIn profile. Add one to a handout to direct your colleagues to an online example they can bring up on their own. Upload a YouTube video invitation to your party/wedding/new baby annoucement and add an extra element to your mailed invites. The possibilities are limited only by your imagination.

You can create the codes for free on several sites (my current choice is http://bit.ly) and start tacking them wherever you’d like. The obvious downside is someone needs to have a smart phone to be able to scan your codes, and not all of us have that at our fingertips yet. But, I think this is something that’s going to start popping up in a lot of places. Keep your eyes out.

If you do have a smart phone, give scanning a QR code a try. Here’s one I made especially for this post. 🙂

Cheers,
Anthea

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~ by Anthea on October 21, 2010.

4 Responses to “Visiting campus via bar code”

  1. So cool! I had no idea you could create these for free! Do you need to download an app or something in order to scan them?

    • All you need is a bar code scanner app. Fortunately it doesn’t have to be a specific one, and there are a ton out there for free.

  2. Here’s a good site for making a QR code (complete with link shortener) http://delivr.com/qr-code-generator

    My only gripe is the security aspect of this. I mean, you are clicking (err, scanning) a link that you don’t know where it leads to. Yes, it should be a trustworthy source, but what if it isn’t?

  3. Anthea, you are such a punk! ❤

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