Since the new year, Evans Library’s Assistant Manager for Information Technology, Nathan Miller, has been answering questions before they’re even asked. No, Nathan isn’t conjuring magic with the Magic Geek set he got for Christmas. He’s making QR codes.
The almost inconspicuous Tetris-style images cause some students to instantly reach for iPhones and Androids, others to pause briefly to wonder aloud, “what are these?” In a nutshell, Quick Response (QR) barcodes contain lots of information – they can link to websites, display text, open e-mail forms, and more – and provide easy access to this information on the spot using mobile phones and webcams.
Strategically placed on Library doorways and lobby display cases, the codes link users to more information about where they’re standing or what they’re seeing. For example, codes like the one above placed near the study spaces link to a listing of room reservations, so students can view available rooms and make reservations from wherever they are in the building. Miller anticipates future code placements to put students, faculty, and staff in touch with Library services and information.
To get started using QR codes in the Evans Library, you will need a QR reader. Several free reader applications are available for download to your mobile phone (view some at mobile-barcodes.com or search the iTunes Store). Depending on your reader, you can view content and then share it instantly with friends and colleagues via e-mail or Twitter.
Look for the codes on your next visit to Evans Library. In the meantime, take a peek at some mighty tasty QR codes from NYC Resistor.