Innovative uses for QR Codes

QR codes seem to have passed the trough of despair in the innovation cycle, and have started popping up all over the place in recent months. I spotted one on the back of a junk-mail leaflet from a local Church in France, a poster containing just a QR code advertising a somewhat controversial political party, and the company I work for will be using them on the booth at the next big trade-show we attend.

Whilst it is really easy to generate a QR code of your contact details, or to refer your website viewers to a mobile optimized version of your site (which I’ve had on my site for years and could really do with refreshing), coming up with an innovative or creative use for QR codes is mighty hard.

Thanks to the error correction embedded in QR codes, it is possible to mess with the design, and create some really pleasing examples that don’t look quite so grating when used on a website, or printed advertising. Hamilton Chan at Mashable posted a few beautiful QR code examples last week, including the one to the right here.

Jumpscan also provided Mashable with a neat infographic showing some of the history of QR codes, pointing out amongst other statistics that scanning of QR codes has increased 1200% from July to Dec 2010, somewhat confirming my suspicion that these things are really starting to take off.

Image from JumpScan

Yet again from mashable - today I see that Victor Petit from Lyon, who was looking for an internship, but has now landed one, came up with a really innovative way of showcasing his creativity and allowing him to attach his voice to a paper resume.

In the comments of the above article I also came across Hagan Blount - an unemployed social media strategist, who claims he will ‘tweet for food’, and uses a couple of QR codes to provide links to videos of himself and his contact details.


As Clay Shirky would likely say - this is one of the great examples of technology only becoming interesting once it becomes technologically boring… which is to say that’s when the creative folks start using it

What will you do to ‘move the needle’ and increase creativity?