Having Fun With QR Codes

Like our Facebook page with just this QR code

It’s amazing what “new” technologies can do in the right hand. I put new in quotes there because the technology we’re talking about today, QR codes, was invented by Toyota in 1994. However, since the invention of these fascinating little images we have found tons of fun ways to use them.

So, what exactly are they? They’re a lot like bar codes, except that instead of being limited to just a few numbers some QR codes can have as many as 7000 characters. You can make QR codes that include your entire contact information. Alphanumeric QR codes can contain 4,296 characters.

If you want to check out some cool things you can do with QR codes I’d suggest going over to QR Stuff (http://www.qrstuff.com/) and playing around with it. Here are some of the options they list.

  • Website URL – link straight to your website, rather simple
  • YouTube video – this would auto load a video on your phone
  • Google Maps – pull up a location on the users phone, like you know, your business
  • Twitter – nuff said
  • Facebook – Great option here, you can go to a profile, auto like a page, etc..
  • Telephone number – it can actually dial your business
  • Pain Text – this is great for scavenger type things. Pull up plain text that says anything you want i.e. “say the word Tubalcain at our store and get a free gift” P.s. if you don’t know what Tubalcain is you need to know it, guaranteed way to get out of jail.
  • SMS Message – not only can you pull up a phone number but you can make the phone write a text for the user to send. So they can do things like subscribe to your text updates or get a phone call back
  • PayPal Buy Now link – put this QR code on your product at a show or on a poster of your product, then you customer can buy it right then and there without having to do anything else.

There are more but I hope I’ve shown you just how amazing these little things can be. Seriously, you’ll have a blast playing with QR codes if you get into it. And believe me when I say that EVERYONE will know what a QR code is in the next three years. While it’s old technologies the crazy uses for it are just getting started, just you wait.

So how do I read these codes? Basically, you just need an app on your phone. Be careful though, some apps automatically do whatever the QR code says, this can be dangerous if somebody puts malicious code on a website or wants you to send a text to a premium number that’s going to charge you $39.99. So I like to use the good old Google app on my iPhone. By using the picture icon next to the search I can take a picture of any QR code and immediately know what it’s going to do BEFORE it does it.. See below:

Words With Friends – Better Than Angry Birds

I know, I know, how dare I go throwing around subjective ideas like “Words With Friends is better than Angry Birds.” Well, I’m sorry but for me, it is. But, that’s not the point of this post. I want to tell you about Words With Friend (from Zynga) and what I like about it.

Availability: This is one of my favorite things about Words. Today I connected my iPad and my Facebook (right from within the apps interface) to my one Words account. Meaning that I can keep the game going between my iPhone, iPad and web browser, the same games, against the same people. I currently have seven games active.  There is also an Android version so now everyone should have the ability to play this game.

Cost: It’s free, well sort of. I hate ads so I had to pay (on all the platforms) for an ad free version. But it’s their right to have ads and when I played with them it wasn’t a deal breaker.

Fun Factor: If you’re competitive then this is the game for you. As long as nobody cheats it’s a constant battle of wit and will. I’m not doing so well in this round but I’ve had some amazing doozies. There’s a reason Scrable (the game this “borrows” from) is so popular. Everyone wants to know if they’re smarter than their friends. It’s not entirely about knowing the dictionary either, there is a lot of strategy in being defensive, avoiding getting near bonus squares, and holding back letters you know are crucial.

I am extremely judgmental when it comes to games. For me to even bother wasting the memory space there has to be significant value for me. This game delivers, to an addictive level. Well done Zynga, I give you a 9.7/10.


Microsoft hits an iPhone app grand slam with Photosynth

Great apps can come from anywhere. Thought  I do find it ironic that one of my favorite photography apps for the iPhone comes from competitor Microsoft.

Photosynth is an application for your phone or PC that puts multiple images together into one larger image. The cool part, the thing that really WOWED me was how it does it.

I turned on the app, told it to start taking a panorama and just moved my phone in the directions I wanted captured. No clicking the picture button, no interaction while it captures. You just move the camera around, up, down, left, right, any direction you want to capture and it gives you a green light when it wants you to hold steady for a second. Once it captures it will make the image appear a little more complete letting you know it’s time to move on.

Once you finish capturing an image you click done and Photosynth takes care of the rest for you. I’ve had so much fun creating 360 degree views of places I visit.

Oh, and did I mention the app is FREE!!! At that price I promise it’s worth trying, you will impress your friends.

Check out this Synth I made of some friends watching a move:

Amazing right?