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what are qr codesThere’s only one universal truth in the world of technology today: people can’t get enough of scanning QR codes. Whether they’re driving to work, reading a magazine or just taking a walk, people love the opportunity to use their phone’s camera to load websites.

Even better: most QR codes lead directly to advertisements, which as we all know everyone loves. Just ask your friends: they’re all scanning QR codes constantly (at least, if they’re cool). It’s an international craze that can’t be stopped, and in no way just a stupid marketing gimmick designed to make tracking consumers easier.

No way at all!

Don’t believe me? Check out this Tumblr page packed with people scanning QR codes. Why the insane popularity? I’m glad you asked: find just a few reasons below.

QR Codes Are Quick!

Typing a URL on a modern smart phone, as we all know, takes two to three hours.

Scanning a QR code, by comparison, is simple: just grab your phone out of your pocket, unlock it, scroll through your apps until you find the one for QR codes (assuming you’ve installed one), hold your camera up to the code, wait for the camera to focus on the code, watch as it struggles to do so, move the camera or yourself so as to get a better angel, bump into people because you’re looking at your phone instead of what’s around you, apologize to those people, wait a while longer, and voila: you’re at your website.

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Like I said: quick!

what are qr codes

Want to look extra cool? Use your tablet to scan the code instead of your phone!

QR Codes Could Lead Anywhere!

Isn’t it annoying how you always know precisely where a URL will take you? Good news: with a QR code, you have no idea! In a world where mobile malware is becoming a threat, this is an awesome way to add excitement to your day.

While walking to work here in Boulder I see many stickers with QR Codes on them, all offering me information about Facebook’s IPO. I’m certain these lead to legitimate information that will give me, the savvy investor, a heads up on an important opportunity.

why qr codes are important

Looks legit.

QR Codes Are Aesthetically Pleasing!

If Apple taught us anything, it’s that minimalist design is stupid and never works. That’s why I’m glad QR codes are being added to everything from billboards to magazine advertisements: they aesthetically enhance everything they’re put on! Learn from this, Apple:

what are qr codes

They Give Marketers A Way To Get Our Attention!

Isn’t it annoying having a deep conversation with a good friend instead of looking at cool shoes on your smart phone? That’s the real reason QR codes are so awesome: they give marketers the chance to keep us focused on their messages during moments we’d otherwise simply be enjoying life.

Being outside gives you a chance to unplug, to think about what really matters and to enjoy the amazing beauty of the planet we live on. That’s stupid: you should be looking at your phone.

So it’s a good thing QR codes are there to impulsively remind you. Don’t reflect: consume! There’s no reason you shouldn’t be absorbing marketing information every hour of your waking day. After all: there’s no way for marketers to show you messages while you’re asleep (yet).

Matt thinks QR codes are just a fad Are QR Codes Just A Fad? [Opinion] Are QR Codes Just A Fad? [Opinion] I remember the first time I encountered a QR code. I didn’t have a smartphone yet, so my reaction was "Hey, what’s this weird block of pixels?" It was only when I purchased my first... Read More . Whatever. Here’s what I want to know: why do you think QR codes are so awesome? Leave your thoughts in the comments below, but please: no sarcasm. That accomplishes nothing and makes you look like a jerk in front of the entire Internet.

  1. Stirling
    September 14, 2012 at 8:24 pm

    There's this cool app for Android called "Airdroid" that lets you scan a QR code on your laptop or PC that basically logs your pc ONTO your PHONE.

    I'm not joking.

    http://airdroid.com/

  2. muotechguy
    April 4, 2012 at 8:42 am

    Disappointing - I expecting to see at least 5 QR codes in this article. I count 4, two of which are obscured.

  3. www.learniply.com
    March 28, 2012 at 4:27 am

    You should check out http://www.learniply.com

    The learniply platform uses QR Codes placed in public locations such as art galleries, museums, zoos and nature parks, to allow anyone with a smartphone to locate information related to their current location. This information is created through your free learniply account, and can include anything from information about a nearby exhibit to interpretive or way finding information.

    • muotechguy
      April 4, 2012 at 8:41 am

      Wow, you mean like what you can do with a GPS enabled smartphone anyway, without having to scan something? Now that is innovative.

  4. Chris Hoffman
    March 24, 2012 at 8:50 pm

    That was hilarious. And so, so true.

    • Justin Pot
      March 28, 2012 at 2:40 am

      Why do people keep saying this is funny? I'm sincerely saying QR codes are great...

  5. KittyCat
    March 24, 2012 at 9:52 am

    I like it when articles about apps provide a QR code at the end. If I like the app, all I need to do is hit my search button, tap the vision icon, hold my phone steady for about a second while the code is in view, and then tap on the resulting link.

    • KittyCat
      March 24, 2012 at 9:56 am

      Oh, and you missed a "." in the QR code -> makeuseof[.]com. Still it was amusing~

  6. Moose
    March 24, 2012 at 2:51 am

    http://www.moosedixon.com/coffee/

    BTW, my QR scanning app always tells me the destination and asks if I want to go.

  7. CW
    March 23, 2012 at 4:55 pm

    Thank you Justin, for clearing up for me the importance of QR codes. I did not understand their usefulness until reading this:
    "Isn’t it annoying how you always know precisely where a URL will take you? Good news: with a QR code, you have no idea! In a world where mobile malware is becoming a threat, this is an awesome way to add excitement to your day."

    • Justin Pot
      March 28, 2012 at 2:41 am

      Glad to help.

  8. Chris
    March 23, 2012 at 12:29 pm

    This post had me in stitches for 5 mins. I read the post then opened the Flickr page link and it set me off again. It's so true, they are the most pointless/ugliest things in modern day tech

    • Justin Pot
      March 23, 2012 at 2:53 pm

      I don't know what's so funny...I sincerely do love QR codes...

  9. san thiru
    March 23, 2012 at 4:19 am

    I liked this sentence: move the camera or yourself so as to get a better "angel"...
    Article is good to laugh... QR codes are having their own irresistible usages...
    But it makes things easier which includes bad things too... We don't know the future yet...

  10. Madis
    March 22, 2012 at 8:49 pm

    QR codes are useful when an URL has not been shortened :P (Even short links can take long to type...)

  11. B
    March 22, 2012 at 8:18 pm

    QR-codes are great if you use them for the right things.

    -) On products (just like regular barcodes, but with more information).
    -) To contain a lot of otherwise digital data (VCards, Events, ...)

    • Gerben
      March 22, 2012 at 11:00 pm

      Totally agree. Just the useless things that advertising agencies do with them, and thus what is being portrayed in this blogpost, is what gives them bad rep..

  12. Seppe
    March 22, 2012 at 8:16 pm

    haha great article, had good laugh :).

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