"QR Codes - Those magical black and white square barcodes many forget are read by and empower smartphones and other small screen devices but still have the urge to send them to old fashioned unreadable websites."

QR Codes

QR Code QR4"Misunderstood and abused 2D barcodes that are in fact a mobile revolution in that they can instantly turn a real world printed material into dynamic on demand digital information. The posibilities are nearly endless, think of direct dialing, video streaming, contact information exchange, e-mail dispatch, navigation co-ordinates, and the list goes on and on....
 
These mobile barcodes are from 1994 and today still marketing agencies, large corporations and governments are still using them to send unsuspecting mobile users to totally unusable websites designed for computer screens. Indicating to mobile users the incompetence of said parties to deal with modern communication opportunities. Why they spend time and money on loosing customers beats me. Such a shame!
 
NOTE IMPORTANT: QR codes are generally scanned and read by 'small screen' mobile devices. Please remember this before implementing QR codes going to websites for public use, you could just land up complimenting your competition!. If you are not sure what your website looks like on mobile devices, use the 'mobile website readiness tests' and check.

What is a QR code

QR Code MarkerIt's nothing more than a barcode, a two dimensional barcode.

QR Code Components

Unlike 1D barcodes consisting of vertical stripes which can be read in only one plain, QR codes can be read irrespective of their orientation in a 2D plain. They re proportionately square in nature with X and Y plains containing the same amount of data symbols.

QR Code MarkerThree primary marker used to determine orientation.

QR Code SpotPerspective marker to determine skew and perspective distortion.

QR Code TimingX and Y timing. Used to determine horizontal and vertical grid matrix.

QR Code Content TypeInformation about how information is encoded.

QR Code Version TypeData version/volume Information (between 1 - 40).

QR Code Examples

Jeroen Steeman QR CodeBranded vCard+ QR code that leads to a dynamic business card service (Dutch).

Jeroen Steeman Twitter QR CodeDirect link to Twitter.

Jeroen Steeman YouTube QR CodeDirect link to YouTube channel.

Industrial QR Code Generator API Information

The ODOA B.V. Industrial QR Code Generator Server API Documentation and sample code to generate high quality vector QR codes at high speed. This generator makes use of the matrix processor as described in another section of this site to facilitate the high speed generation of PDF and EPS barcodes.

The generator can be managed as required. Without setting any parameters, it will automatically generate black and white QR Codes with the optimal format. Any parameter setting that is changed remains active for any following QR code generation requests. Parameters can also be changed while the generator is running, the next best request after a parameter change will have the new parameter value applied.

Parameter settings and default values for the QR Code API

Parameter Name

QRCodeVersion

Type - Value

0 = Automatic (default)

1 - 40 determine the modules used

Description

Depending on the amount of data (bytes) and the encoding schema used, the QR code needs to have enough data modules (squares) to hold and contain the data. If to few are specified, and error will occur. If to many are specified the QR code may be more complex (contain more squares) and contain unused redundant modules. Best is to leave it a '0' Automatic to get optimized QR codes. This value is typically used if you need the QR code size to remain the same irrespective of the data that it needs to contain.

Parameter Name

QRCodeEncodeMode

Type - Value

ENCODE_MODE.BYTE (default)

ENCODE_MODE.ALPHA_NUMERIC

ENCODE_MODE.NUMERIC

Description

This instructs the generator how to deal with and encode information received to be placed inside the QR code barcode. The default is set to BYTE which is able to handle the widest range of input data and ideally suited for being read by mobile devices. Numeric and alpha numeric accept a more limited character input field, but produce more compact (smaller) barcodes. The later is typically used to store product and serial numbers for commercial and industrial barcode solutions.

Parameter Name

QRCodeScale

Type - Value

INTEGER: value between 1 and 10

4 (default)

Description

Determines the size of the QR Code squares used to construct the barcode. Having little to no effect for vector based barcode generation as these can be scaled up and down without any qulity loss, this setting is very important for generating bitmap barcodes. The lower the value the smaller the QR code and also the smaller the file size.

Parameter Name

QRCodeBorder

Type - Value

INTEGER: value between 1 and 10

2 (default)

Description

Commonly known as the 'quiet zone', it is the area around the outside of the QR code that has the same color and the barcode background. All QR codes should have a border and the specification states it should be four times the size (width or height) of the building blocks (square). This is required to make 'fast reading' by QR code readers as no borders, or other objects, text or graphics in this zone mat confuse readers into thinking it is part of the code and thus making it difficult to scan.

Parameter Name

QRCodeErrorCorrect

Type - Value

ERROR_CORRECTION.L

ERROR_CORRECTION.M (default)

ERROR_CORRECTION.Q

ERROR_CORRECTION.H

Description

Predetermined damage control, common to 2D barcodes like QRCodes and Data Matrix and unknown to 1D barcodes. This lets you determine the amount of soiling or damage to the barcode image that will leave it in a readable state for scanners. If ranges from "LOW" meaning trivial soiling or damage will render it useless, to HIGH, meaning 33% of the data can be missing and it will be readable. NOTE: Setting error correction to HIGH has a significant effect on the increase of size (module count) of the QRCode.

Parameter Name

QRCodeForegroundColor

Type - Value

rrggbb hexadecimal value conform html encoding standards

000000 (Black) (default)

Description

Active element color definition. Default is black as per specification. This is set to achieve maximum contrast between foreground color and background color.

Parameter Name

QRCodeBackgroundColor

Type - Value

rrggbb hexadecimal value conform html encoding standards

FFFFFF (White) (default)

Description

Background QRCode color definition. Default is white as per specification. This is set to achieve maximum contrast between foreground color and background color.

Parameter Name

QRCodeForegroundAlpha

Type - Value

INTEGER between 0 and 255

255 (default)

Description

Determines the transparency or opacity of the active elements (foreground color). Value 0 is equivalent to invisible and 255 as a solid color.

Parameter Name

QRCodeBackgroundAlpha

Type - Value

INTEGER between 0 and 255

255 (default)

Description

Determines the transparency or opacity of the QRCode background. Value 0 is equivalent to invisible (no background color) and 255 as a solid color.

Parameter Name

QRCodeColorMode

Type - Value

COLOR_MODEL.CMYK

QR4Encoder.COLOR_MODEL.RGB (default)

Description

Determines the color model to use for generating QRCodes. NOTE CMYK settings will be ignored if the 'output type' setting is set to any bitmap format. The CMKY color model is calculated using the RGB foreground and background values.

Parameter Name

QRCodeFileName

Type - Value

STRING ASCII

Empty string (Default)

Description

A string containing the full path to where the file must be saved, including the file name and without extention. Default is an empty string and results in no file being saved. The application is responsible for reading and processing the binary output and streaming it to where it is needed.

Parameter Name

QRCodeOutPut

Type - Value

OUTPUT_FILETYPE.PNG

OUTPUT_FILETYPE.JPG (Default)

OUTPUT_FILETYPE.EPS

OUTPUT_FILETYPE.PDF

Description

If QRCodeFileName is set, it determines what kind of QRCode file is created and saved. Four basic selections are available, two are bitmap and two vector.

Other onile QRCode generators

Link display and printed collateral to online interactive Internet content using qrcodes. A selection of free qrcode generators for non-commercial use.