Week 2: Rise of “Big Data” and Data Scientists

Are you ready for QR codes?

Are you ready for QR codes?

by Eva Birger -
Number of replies: 29
It seems to be the newest hype in presenting yourself, QR codes.

How can one accomplish to create a personal QR profile and which tools do you need to scan it?
In reply to Eva Birger

Re: Are you ready for QR codes?

by Hans de Zwart -
An easy way to create QR codes is with Bit.ly. You can shorten any URL and will get a bit.ly link back. By adding .qr to the link you will get a QR code that you can use elsewhere.

Mine looks like this (I have it printed on my business card):

hansdezwartqr.qrcode

People who use a QR reader (any phone platform has multiple free apss) will be taken to the Bit.ly url: http://bit.ly.hansdezwartqr (people will not see this). This allows me to track how many people have used the QR code. The bit.ly link then takes them to http://www.hansdezwart.info/qr, which takes them to my blog (where I intend to do a write-up of this at some point as I realise this could be quite confusing).

In the future I will be able to make http://www.hansdezwart.info/qr show a nice landing page.

In general QR codes are an easy way to match a physical object to virtual information. I have used them quite succesfully in presentations on the beamer to link people to more information online.

I imagine they will soon be superseded by either RFID tags and near field communication or by the rapid advances in live visual processing and understanding by computers.
In reply to Eva Birger

Re: Are you ready for QR codes?

by Apostolos Koutropoulos -
It's interesting that this topic should come up today (or rather, it's interesting that I first saw it today). Coming to work there was a giant QR code in my subway car. Just the QR code, nothing else. I needed to know what it was so I snapped a photo of it (or rather scanned it) with my iPhone and it directed me to: http://ohaipuzzle.com/ which said "SOLVE ME"

Personally I think that QR codes could be used for some fun things, but it is all contingent on the learner having a device that can read the QR code.

I've seen some Microsoft Tag codes, but honestly, they have been few and far between so I haven't bothered downloading the app for my iphone
In reply to Apostolos Koutropoulos

Re: Are you ready for QR codes?

by Susannah Skyer Gupta -
I did download TagReader a while back (compelled by some pop magazine ad, extra content or contest) and it's flaky -- often does not correctly read the tag/code. Suggestions for reliable readers on the iPhone?
In reply to Eva Birger

Re: Are you ready for QR codes?

by Chris Luchs -
As many of us have mentioned you can use QR codes for a variety of things. Some of the businesses I consult with are looking at QR codes as a way to market to mobile buyers and direct them to their special sale sites. So far, these businesses are in retail or food and they are looking at putting them on promotional items, clothing, etc.

However, near my college there is a library using Tag Reader to assist its patrons in finding resources; however they are finding minimal use by their students.

I use Barcode Scanner for my barcode and QR code needs :)
In reply to Eva Birger

Re: Are you ready for QR codes?

by Richard Olsen -
Stephen Downes wrote about this today http://www.downes.ca/post/54634/

He is not a fan, for reasons of trust and safety, you don't know where you're being sent to.
In reply to Eva Birger

Re: Are you ready for QR codes?

by Barbara Dieu -

One could imagine a not very far dystopian scenario, in which all objects, buildings and people are tagged with the QR codes and interact with you, other objects and send the industry data (how many/how often/where they were bought on a certain date, for example).

The eggs in the fridge could send you an SMS message saying it's time to eat them or else they will rot, just like your handbag could talk to your scarf. http://alumni.media.mit.edu/~nanda/design/electronics/byob/byob.html


In the same way, one could imagine everyone having QR codes tattoed ,or some kind of chip inserted, on their wrists from birth , which would be a convenient way of carrying your ID card on you all the time, even when deep diving.

Learners could then be followed to the second with the Moral Compass http://neuromin.de/rct/moral_compass.html

and societal-scale ubiquitous camera networks allied to wearable sensing would identify and facilitate social interaction:
http://www.media.mit.edu/resenv/spinner/introduction.html




In reply to Barbara Dieu

Re: Are you ready for QR codes?

by Kelly Edmonds -
I wonder if when we scan a QR our personal data is retrieved unknowingly sending information about the interested consumer. It seems some smartphone apps are collecting and remitting data without our knowing.
In reply to Kelly Edmonds

Re: Are you ready for QR codes?

by Apostolos Koutropoulos -
No, a QR code is just a cypher that is deciphered when a reader can break the code. There is no two-way communication going on when your phone "reads" a QR code.

A QR code is essentially encoded text. It can be a URL, a poem, what you want for your birthday, your local library library hours and so on.

Now, if you choose to go to a linked website that you find in a QR code, then that website knows typical analytics like location, browser, and device type.
In reply to Apostolos Koutropoulos

Re: Are you ready for QR codes?

by Hans de Zwart -
Apostolos, I think Kelly is asking whether the QR reader software might be storing the information somewhere centrally and using it for some purpose.

This is one of the things I dislike about the iOS platform: it is completely unclear what kind of data these apps store about you somewhere.

Who knows...?
In reply to Hans de Zwart

Re: Are you ready for QR codes?

by Apostolos Koutropoulos -
Oh! I see!
In all honesty I did not think of that scenario!
There could be some data harvesting on the back end from an app, but there are quite a few barcode/QR reader apps out there that one can easily choose another app.

This type of data harvesting can happen on any operating system. Just because it isn't reported, doesn't mean it's not happening. :-)

On the mac there is a utility called Little Snitch that allows you to allow/disallow connections that applications make to the internet (even hidden ones) if you don't want your data to be out there. Nothing like that on iOS though (that I know of).
In reply to Apostolos Koutropoulos

Re: Are you ready for QR codes?

by Kelly Edmonds -

I suspect that any connected device can collect and transmit information. I read recently that some apps on smartphones have hidden capabilties to do such things. One has to be quite diligent to examine them all! Thanks for the tip on the Little Snitch app. I'll look into that.

In reading the given articles in this course, it seems to me that data collection has been a long time initiative (and at times with little intention to analyze). It is quite amazing the types of information stored. Now, to figure what to do with them.

In reply to Barbara Dieu

Re: Are you ready for QR codes?

by Inge Ignatia de Waard -
Great set of applications! Not sure if I am all into the QRcode tattoo though :-)
In reply to Inge Ignatia de Waard

Re: Are you ready for QR codes?

by Barbara Dieu -
Neither am I, Inge :-)

However, much as I think learning analytics can help in a number of different situations, most people in their daily life are not fond of complexity and tend not to question data analysis or what is behind all these apps, just accept them as they are.

The excessive belief we will boost efficiency by measurement and optimization practices (technology recording and timing every movement to improve performance) without taking into account the human/social/affective/emergent that is present in learning and life will lead to the rigidity, conformism and mechanical view of the world we are trying to overcome.

"In the past the man has been first, in the future the system must be first"
(Frederick W. Taylor, The Principles of Scientific Management, 1911)
http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/mod/1911taylor.html

Off topic but a good read :-)
The Machine Stops - E.M. Forster (1909)
In reply to Barbara Dieu

Re: Are you ready for QR codes?

by Inge Ignatia de Waard -
oh Barbara, you make me very happy with the link to 'the machine stops', immediately downloaded it to read during my daily commute. Thanks!

I totally agree with you that measurement and performance enhancement should be in balance with human (learning) nature. I feel that time to dream and think is high knowledge quality time, and as such knowledge workers and training people should have time off, just to get their minds around new information and transform it into knowledge and educational actions. Great people, took their time I think.
In reply to Barbara Dieu

Re: Are you ready for QR codes?

by ines cambiasso -

#Barbara, I can´t agree more.

Having said that, technology is still amazing and we are here to humanize it. 

In reply to Eva Birger

Re: Are you ready for QR codes?

by Dianne Rees -
I started a Diigo group on using QR codes for education (it's an open group, anyone can join). I've also written a few blog posts on it. They're very easy to create and fun to access and discover the content behind them (which is why I think they've caught on).
In reply to Dianne Rees

Re: Are you ready for QR codes?

by Kelly Edmonds -

Thanks for these, Diane. I will explore later! I plan to travel to Europe this year and suspect they may have more of the codes at museums, etc. Do you know?

ps. however, the international fees may deter me to use my iPhone.

In reply to Eva Birger

Re: Are you ready for QR codes? use in augmented reality

by Inge Ignatia de Waard -
QR-codes are a great feature, also for education or training. You can use it to direct people inside your organization, or provide just-in-time learning. Or you can use it to plan a historical lesson inside a city, where qr-codes direct you to either more information or the map.

Additionally, QR-codes are used in augmented reality, which is REALLY nice stuff.

In the past I have presented on possible educational benefits of QRcodes:
http://www.slideshare.net/ignatia/oeb08-mobile-barcodes-q-rcodes-inge-de-waard-small3-presentation

and a post that points towards nice applications, be sure to check out the great Olympus example, I have an Olympus card and the augmented app works great!
http://ignatiawebs.blogspot.com/2010/10/mlearn2010-andy-goff-on-augmented.html

cheers,
Inge
In reply to Inge Ignatia de Waard

Re: Are you ready for QR codes? use in augmented reality

by Adam Weisblatt -
When I first started playing with QR codes (as a consumer) they were gee wiz cool but I suspected that they were a solution in search of a problem.

Through this course I've seen three important uses for them:

- Equipment training - put the QR on the equipment to lead to the mLearning training module for that equipment (Someone mentioned that in the chat during a webinar this week or last. Sorry I can't remember who)

- Augmented reality - I've been wondering how people connect augmented reality content with their location. GPS data could do it but QR codes would be so much simpler. For education, this could be a great way to connect to learning on site.

- Storytelling - A great way to involve learners would be to get them out into a location playing a sort of scavenger hunt game with QR codes and then providing rich content through storytelling. Because of social media, the static-one-way QR code would transform into a two way interactive tool
In reply to Adam Weisblatt

Re: Are you ready for QR codes? use in augmented reality

by Inge Ignatia de Waard -
oh Adam, I really like your storytelling application in combination with social media. really great idea.
In reply to Adam Weisblatt

Re: Are you ready for QR codes? use in augmented reality

by Eva Birger -

Adam, great suggestion about the storytelling. Now I have to think about the the perfect concept and theme.

This thread helped me a lot. I mentioned in my blog under relevant data.