You may have heard that we were fortunate at Google to receive the Android phone (what T-Mobile calls the G1) as a holiday gift from the company. I was out the day they were distributed, so I didn’t get a chance to play with the phone over the holidays, and instead picked mine up on Monday. I don’t have a SIM card for the phone yet – still trying to decide whether I’ll ditch the corporate Blackberry in favor of this device – but I’ve thoroughly enjoyed using it as a wifi device for the last couple days. (With wifi at work, on the shuttle home, and at home, the device does quite well as a browser/Twitter client/e-mail client.)
I’d seen a number of QR codes pop up on campus lately – at the entrance to meeting rooms, at the top of stair landings, etc. – and hadn’t bothered to ask anyone what they were. Last night, while poking around on our intranet to see what internal apps I could install for my phone, I finally saw a reference to the QR codes: if you have the Barcode Reader app installed on your phone, the 3 megapixel camera built into the phone can scan and identify the QR code and do the right thing. In the case of the QR codes I’d been seeing around the office, they’re URLs – which pull up a map of the building and show where I am.
So here’s the cool part: the Google Chart API server can generate QR codes on the fly. Here’s the QR code for my blog:
The URL is here: http://chart.apis.google.com/chart?chs=250×250&cht=qr&chl=http://tins.rklau.com
Note that the last part of the URL is the address of my blog; swap out that URL for your own and you have your very own QR code! Documentation on the Chart API is here; have fun!
(BTW, these QR codes aren’t limited to just the Google phone – there are QR code readers for the iPhone, Nokia phones and many others.)