Friday, April 22, 2011

Create Your Own QR Codes

QR CodeIn the last two posts, we learned what "Quick Reference" codes are all about and where you can get a reader. In this post, you will learn how to create your own. Several sites are available for you to create QR codes in seconds.

Kaywa

This very simple site asks you to enter the URL and click "generate." To save and use the code, click directly on the QR code to view the it in a separate window. Right-click and save the image to your computer. Another option is to copy the html code for later use on a website or blog.

Notice that Kaywa also allows a phone option. Enter a telephone number. When someone scans the resulting code, it will call the phone number. If the phone number has an exchange, my own experiments indicate you follow the phone number with an "x" and the extension. The smartphone calls the number, pauses, and enters the extension.

Mobile-Barcodes

This generator operates much like Kaywa. This site also allows you to compose a QR code that will create a new e-mail message on the smartphone with an address, subject, and pre-formatted text body. You will also see a simple "message" option. Rather than taking the viewer to another site, you see a message immediately on the screen.

Online QR Lab

This generator does all of the things we have discussed to this point, but also allows you to create a contact. Add your own contact information, and when others scan the QR code, you will be added to their smartphone contacts.

Kerem Erkan

Browse the drop-down list of QR code types you can create. Your result appears as a very large code on the screen. Right-click and save to your computer

Bit.ly

If you already use Bit.ly as your link shortener, realize there is a built in QR code generator. After creating a shortened URL, refresh and click the "Info page" beside the link. There you will see your QR code.

BlackBerry Messenger

If your BlackBerry does not already have Messenger installed, clicking the above link will allow you to download it. When you open Messenger on your BlackBerry, press the menu key and select "Scan a Group Bar Code." This code reader will take you to a URL or make a phone call. I have found it does not support some of the other options, such as e-mail or messages.

As you see, creating QR codes is easy. Now the question becomes, "Why would you want create them?" Perhaps you are already thinking of some uses. The next post, the last in this series, will provide some practical uses for QR codes.

Have you benefited from this series on QR codes? If so, send me an e-mail. In fact, you can scan the code you find in this post. It will create an e-mail with my address completed, a subject, and a pre-formatted body. Depending on the reader, the subject and text of the e-mail in the address line, but don't worry. The e-mail will send successfully.

Have you been able to scan QR codes? Have you created some of your own? Tell me about your experience.
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