After posting my most recent piece on quick resource (QR) codes, a number of questions reached me via e-mail and the blog’s comment section. So here’s a short FAQ that answers these questions
Q: Are QR codes an app of some kind?
A: No, a QR code is not an app, but it is a new way to connect — without an actual address — to Internet content. A quick resource symbol can appear anywhere, but you are most likely to see one on paper or signs — non-digital locations — making it easy for an individual to open the app on a smartphone, aim, scan, and connect. Quick resource codes are a bit like bar codes, found everywhere in daily life, except that right now QR codes are less common than bar codes.
QR Codes. You’ve probably seen them around — on everything from cereal boxes to magazines to advertising banners on the bus or in the subway.
QR is short for quick resource code (QR code), the scannable geometric-looking design that connects a person via smartphone to digital information such as an e-mail site, a video, a website, or even a telephone number. QR codes are similar to bar codes, but the QR image contains far more encoded information — thousands of times more, in fact. Learn more about QR codes at the Common Craft video tutorial site.
The Common Craft website is filled with great tutorials on digital topics of all sorts. When I want to learn about something unfamiliar, Common Craft is one of the first places I look for clear — and simple — explanations. And parents and teachers today need lots of digital explanations as we all navigate 21st-century learning landscape.
The tutorial on QR codes is great. I can’t embed the video here on the blog, because a user needs a subscription to do that, but I’ve made a small graphic of the tutorial. Click on it, visit the Common Craft site, and watch the tutorial.