31/8  QR Codes: Color, PDF, Size

Category: QR Code, Data Matrix...    By editor at 11:16
These are recurring question so I try to answer it here:
  • How can we make a colored QR Code?
  • How can we make a QR Code for printing, PDF would be good?
The answer is: go check out QR Code Image:

You can generate QR-Code image with a simple URL and refine display through different parameters for visual adaptation.

Image URL

To hotlink an image, a set of RewriteRules have been defined:
Note (transparency "tttttt" is only supported on PNG image, and only on the background).

Non-rewritten URL

  • BBBBBB is the foreground color, in HTML/Hex format. Defaults to 000000 (black)
  • FFFFFF is the background color, in HTML/Hex format. Defaults to ffffff (white)
  • SIZE is the module size: 1-10
  • TYPE is the output image type: f for PDF, p for PNG
  • DATA is the actual data (URL-ENCODED!)

Decoding with other 2D Barcode Readers

To allow other 2D Barcode Readers than the Kaywa Reader to decode generated
QR-Code you cannot use short code (ex. 2020400193). Instead you
must add the link http://d.kaywa.com/ before the DATA. Here is an example:


which gives you

Generated QR-Code image will be bigger as more data is encoded.

30/8  QR Code Mania in the UK: 28 Weeks Later and Umbro following up on the Pet Shop Boys

Category: QR Code, Data Matrix...    By editor at 21:00
After the Pet Shop Boys...

28 Weeks Later

QR Code from www.28weekslaterdvd.co.uk by Gia
Photo: Iain Tait, for another photo see here

I like the big posters that introduce QR Code without saying anything else. Thanks Gia


Umbro. Go to Downloads to see the QR Codes for the mobile wallpapers.

28/8  QR Codes in the Metaverse Roadmap

Category: QR Code, Data Matrix...    By editor at 21:27
In the Metaverse Roadmap, Pathways to the 3D Web, you can also find a paragraph about Physical Hyperlinks (Physical World Hyperlinks) and more specially QR Codes:
Physical Hyperlinks (Physical World Hyperlinks) are any machine readable identifier (1D and 2D barcodes, RFID tag, image, sound, fingerprint) that can be resolved by a cell phone to dial a phone number, start an email, or facilitate a direct Internet connection. In Japan today, 2D barcodes called QR ("Quick Response") codes, originally used for inventory management, are now proliferating on business cards, in magazine ads and product packaging. QR codes displayed on All Nippon Airways kiosks now allow cellphone users to travel with paperless electronic tickets. On 3G phones with good built-in cameras, even QR codes on billboards can be resolved by the camera phone, to play a movie trailer, provide a coupon code, etc.

IATA verzichtet auf Papiertickets (only in german)

28/8  The Mobile Life in Asia Report from Mindshare

Category: QR Code, Data Matrix...    By editor at 15:07
MindShare's unofficial blog respectively their report (see PDF below) offers you glimpses into how mobile phones are shaping the lives of youth in Asia and vice versa. Several times this blog is mentioned as a info source provider and the Kaywa Reader is also featured prominently in the report. Thank you MindShare.
The mobile phone has become an indispensible equipment for Asian youth. PwC’s 2007 survey of nearly 8,000 of their staff from 17 countries around the world (78% aged between 16-34 yrs) revealed a whopping 98% mobile penetration rate in Asia-Pacific countries, with a significantly lower 62% fixed-line penetration rate.

The first Asia Scout Network pan-regional summary report by MindShare is therefore dedicated to the mobile phone - how mobiles mold the lifestyles of Asian youth and vice versa. Findings are based on updates on the Asia Scout Network blog from our city scouts in Tokyo, Singapore, Jakarta, Bangkok, Sydney, Shanghai, and Kuala Lumpur.

The headlines are:
1) Asian youth pimp their mobiles
2) Mobilizing communities
3) Japan’s contagious QR codes
4) Mobile multimedia gains momentum
5) Making ‘Hero’ features visible
6) What lies beyond
Download the report (PDF) (Local Copy)

See also:
QR Code Wiget for japanese and english proverbs

21/8  No Dresscode, but a Barcode - After Colette, Kerrang, Zadig & Voltaire, now the Pet Shop Boys

Category: QR Code, Data Matrix...    By editor at 21:34
After Colette, Kerrang, Zadig & Voltaire, it's now up to the Pet Shop Boys to play with QR Codes.

Pet Shop Boys QR Code
Image Source: stormynight

I already mentioned it earlier, but couldn't confirm it. Now I finally found their announcement via the official site:

Pet Shop Boys Official Site
Headlines | 2007 | August | 19 August
We need you
[...] The video develops Integral's lyrical theme of ID cards and the erosion of civil liberties in the UK by central government and combines a mix of surveillance type footage and information technology. Also embedded in the film are single frames of QR Code, a new Bar Code technology that is readable by the camera in people's mobile phones. The QR Codes contain url destinations that elaborate on the issues, and encourage viewers to get active.
Everyone involved will get a credit at the end of the video, from one of the barcodes. There's no dress code.
For further details please email Jacqui at the following address: jacqui@thesweetshop.tv

21/8  Dentsu Canada Flash Movie and a response to the Canadian Marketing Blog

Category: QR Code, Data Matrix...    By editor at 16:15
Dentsu Canada QR Code Movie

The Canadian Marketing Blog spoke about the barriers of adoption. There are some good points, but also some misconceptions. I try to address them one by one.
Keep in mind handsets must be web enabled and able to send/receive picture messages - which isn't a substantial barrier. However more challenging is the software application that must be downloaded to receive and process the codes.
The handset must be web enabled if you want to download the reader (some Nokia's come with preinstalled QR Code readers) or visit a mobile website, but in case you have already a reader, you can also use offline codes (Contact data, SMS, Telephone, Text) where you don't need a connection to the web.
And you don't have to send nor receive a picture message as the decoding happens right on the phone.
I don’t understand why taking a picture of a code is easier than sending a keyword to a shortcode and receiving a WAP push (WAP push will facilitate a WAP session where the QR code is hosted). I am extremely confident that a SMS call to action will yield a much higher response rate vs. a “take a picture” call to action.
Scanning a code is much more convenient than typing, especially typing a URL. As for SMS, if you have to type a keyword, send and pay an SMS to receive one with a link in it, well a QR Code is certainly much easier and cheaper. Naturally SMS is well established and QR Code is not (yet), but scanning definitely beats (mis)typing.
No doubt the greatest barrier to the scenario described in the microsite is the redemption of these codes. Imagine for a second retrofitting hundreds, or even thousands, of Coke machines with one of these readers.
The Coke machine scenario is well established in Japan and Taiwan, but it's certainly not the way to start using QR Codes. There are so many other use cases much quicker to implement.
In my opinion, POS terminals and back office software vendors will be a catalyst contributor to moving this technology further.
The m-ticket or m-coupon is from a user's point of view certainly more direct to use as s/he doesn't need to have a QR Code reader, but then we come back to the above problem: we first need to install QR Code Scanners at the point of sale. So what is less heavy to start with: download the reader respectively use the installed readers on Nokia and Windows Mobile phones or equip the point of sales with QR Code scanners plus sending SMS with QR Codes around?

Personally I think we need both, but downloading the reader is certainly easier as a first step. And more and more people do it;)

PS: QR Codes as well as Datamatrix are also called 2D Codes (and not 3D Codes). The EAN-Barcode is a one dimensional code, Color Code would be a 3D Code (color being the third dimension). See also Denso's About 2D Code

20/8  Mobile Phone Novels (Keitai shousetsu) still on the rise

Category: Mobile Content    By editor at 15:08
Goma Books: Publications of Cell Phone Novels Exceed Three Million in One Year
Masayoshi Yoshino, president of Goma Books, said in his opening remarks, "We never imagined it would take off like this, and are just astounded. This all started the year before last, when we consulted with Mahô i-land about a publication to commemorate the 50-year anniversary of our company. More than three million cell phone novels have been published so far this year. I want to establish this not simply as a fad, but as a new kind of culture."

Big Books Hit Japan's Tiny Phones
A mobile phone novel typically contains between 200 and 500 pages, with each page containing about 500 Japanese characters. The novels are read on a cell phone screen page by page, the way one would surf the web, and are downloadable for around $10 each. The first mobile phone novel was written six years ago by fiction writer Yoshi, but the trend picked up in the last couple years when high-school girls with no previous publishing experience started posting stories they wrote on community portals for others to download and read on their cell phones.

See also:
More about mobile phone novels

The Chinese Novel Finds New Life Online

20/8  QR Code and Points and Pet Shop Boys Video with QR Codes

Category: QR Code, Data Matrix...    By editor at 10:52
Points with QR Codes

From Jump! Mobile: Bottle of Tea
The QR Code contains the URL: http://07s.itoencp.jp and can be accessed from either the mobile or the PC. However, they do not have a mobile version of their website if you access via your phone. From what I can understand, these special stickers are only placed on drink bottles sold from vending machines. There is a 14 digit code on the sticker for the user to collect points, which in turn can be used to redeem certain prizes once you've accumulated enough points.

Why I blog this?
We are working on something similar right now and it's always good to see how others do it.


Pet Shop Boys use QR Codes in their new video
Electro-pop pioneers the Pet Shop Boys are seeking 200 people to appear in their new video for upcoming anti-ID card single Integral, for which filming takes place in central London this Tuesday.
[...] Also embedded in the film are single frames of QR Code, a new Bar Code technology that is readable by the camera in people's mobile phones. The QR Codes contain url destinations that elaborate on the issues, and encourage viewers to get active. "Everyone is welcome to the video, the Boy's wont be there though; we have already filmed them," said Jacqui. "And everyone involved will get a credit at the end of the video, from one of the barcodes. There's no dress code," she added.

16/8  Amir on mobile codes standardization

Category: QR Code, Data Matrix...    By editor at 18:22
Amir Rozenberg from ConnexTo wrote a very good article on mobile codes standardization. As myself, he thinks every 2dbarcode reader should support one or both ubiquitous standard symbologies (QR Code, Datamatrix). But read for yourself:
Ubiquitous standard symbologies support with optional proprietary codes: Agree that the industry needs a standard that every code reader will support. Those codes should be QR, DM or both. No point in arguing the code formats issue. All vendors that want to be considered need to support standard codes, and can add support for more codes, like their own proprietary format and maybe others. Operators and brands can then choose the solutions they prefer. Consumers will have the ability to decode the codes and use them regardless of the code reader they are using
I would like to add, that the ISO standard codes must be readable in their URL form. As long as standard codes can only be used in shortcode form, they are not decodable by any reader who supports them. Shortcodes have their value, but it should be up to the client to choose between openess - meaning a code that can be read by several readers - or restrictedness to one reader.

See also:
Open Letter to the Mobile Codes Consortium – MC2
First notes for yet another barcode manifesto

16/8  Some QR Codes from Hong Kong

Category: QR Code, Data Matrix...    By editor at 00:01

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