Friday, September 24, 2010

VO Gets QR Coded

What in pixelated heck is THAT and what's it doing on the VO blog?

For the uninitiated, this is what's called a QR code aka quick response code. Made up of black or coloured modules on a white square background, the information that's embedded in a QR code will direct you to a website, a contact number or other data.

In order to read a QR code, you must have a smartphone such as the iPhone, Blackberry or Android, a newer model mobile phone with a camera or a QR scanner. Some smartphones already come installed with QR code readers, while others just require a simple and free download of a reader such as Neo, Mobio, among a slew of other options.

For example, once scanned, the above QR code will link you to the website. Neato!

QR codes have been in use in Japan since 1994. You can find them practically everywhere and on most everything: from magazines to posters, billboards, food wrappers and menus.

And QR codes are making their way to North America. In fact, you may have already seen our transit posters with our QR code around the city. Posted earlier this month, you can find them at:

Cambie Street and W. 54th Avenue
Clark Street and E. 3rd Avenue
E. 49th Avenue and Victoria Street
E. Broadway and Prince Edward Street
E. Hastings Street and Windermere Street
E. 41st Avenue and Windsor Street
E. Hastings Street and Princess Street
Kingsway and Knight Street
Fraser Street and E. 35th Avenue
Main Street and E. 36th Avenue

If these transit stops are nowhere near you, don't worry. Starting Monday, we'll be blanketing Metro Vancouver with 2500 street posters, all of which will have the same QR code on them.

So what's behind our mysterious QR code?

Exclusive behind-the-scenes access to all things Lillian Alling, including photos, audio tracks and video. Fresh content will be posted weekly, so be sure to check back regularly.

For those who don't have smartphones, not to fear, we will be re-posting all the content on the VO blog at a later date.

Vancouver Opera is excited about using this technology to enhance your experience at our operas. We hope you enjoy this new feature.

~ Ling Chan

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