Alphabet Soup: QR Codes and NFC
Most of us know what Quick Response (QR) Codes are and can do. We see the QR Codes everywhere now. They are in magazines, store advertisements, business cards, newspapers, on wine bottles, and in library online catalogs. There are QR code generators (e.g. http://qrcode.kaywa.com/) that create the code and QR readers (e.g. http://reader.kaywa.com/) that allow smartphones to scan the code and load the QR content. For example if I scan the QR code on a colleague’s business card it might take me to their current CV or Web site.
On May 20, 2011 the New York Public Library hosted an all-night event for young adults lucky enough to be selected to participate in the “Find the Future at NYPL: The Game”. One hundred items in the NYP were given QR codes with embedded information. The end result was a printed book filled with essays written by participants. (http://tinyurl.com/3pgyyu9).
Now enter Near Field Communication or NFC, similar to RFID. The NFC chip is implanted in items like business cards, posters, and stickers. These NFC chips utilize wireless technologies to transfer information to smartphones with NFC chips. Potential uses include credit card payment, ID card, or museum display with video. Smartphones with NFC chips should be able to transfer content (e.g. photos, files) by “bumping” their phones together. With this new form of technology come questions about data security.
Does anyone have a smartphone with an NFC chip? If so, would you like to tell us how you use it?
For more information:
Near Field Communication http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Near_field_communication
QR Codes vs. Near Field Communication: The Battle for Google’s Attention http://tinyurl.com/3govhjk