How to Generate and Read QR Codes for your blog

How to Generate and Read QR Code

Back in 2006, I talked about generating semacode for your blog. More recently, it seems that QR codes have become more ubiquitous in the States. For the uninitiated, this Wikipedia entry explains it well:

A QR Code is a matrix code (or two-dimensional bar code) created by Japanese corporation Denso-Wave in 1994. The “QR” is derived from “Quick Response”, as the creator intended the code to allow its contents to be decoded at high speed. QR Codes are common in Japan where they are currently the most popular type of two dimensional code.

QR Codes storing addresses and URLs may appear in magazines, on signs, buses, business cards or just about any object that a user might need information about. A user having a camera phone equipped with the correct reader software can scan the image of the QR Code causing the phone’s browser to launch and redirect to the programmed URL. This act of linking from physical world objects is known as a hardlink or physical world hyperlinks.

I’d love to start printing name cards and t-shirts with these visual bookmarks, so anyone could simply snap and decode using their camera phone, then pull down a URL of my blog or more directly, a personal hCard.

Key differences between Semacode vs. QR Codes:
1) QR code is popular in Japan, while Semacode is popular outside Japan
2) QR code is open and can store more types of information, while Semacode is developed to store just URLs (Note: debated issue as URLs are pretty open too).

Here are some relevant places you can go to have fun with QR codes:
To generate QR codes for URL, Text, Phone number or SMS, go to

To read QR codes on your iPhone, go to

To read QR codes on your camera phone, download via

To learn how QR codes work, see

Can’t wait to see everthing tagged with QR codes… I think we should have these generators built into sticky label makers!

8 thoughts on “How to Generate and Read QR Codes for your blog

  1. Nokia has a website to let you generate your own qr code, including links to download the reader for their phones.

    Here’s what I discover.

    1. For my e61i I use quickmark. It’s the only one that works with my e61i with the wide screen. It’s also the fastest and the best since you can zoom in your camera, also it detects the code in real time even before you zom. Should also work on your e60. Install it on your card memory, connect to your pc on data transfer mode, find ‘quickmark’, and edit the ini file to make it silence as sound from the software when the qr code is identified is quite irritating.

    2. For java phones, the best choice is kaywa. That’s for my Nokia 6280.

    3. Somehow none of the reader could read those QR codes generated in Japan. Don’t know why it is (maybe it’s the Kana writing system? Or the version).

  2. @Straydog:
    Japanese QR Codes are very small compared to what we need here in US/Europe. Their camera phones are so much better, that they can make very small codes.

    Europe/US will follow sooner or later.

    If they make a bit bigger codes it’s no problem to read them. But then you also need a japanese language pack on your phone;)

  3. @ Straydog: Thanks for sharing the Nokia alternative. It looks different from the standard Japanese QR Code though, so it’s proprietary to Nokia by design. Notice how the standard QR Code has bold positioning squares on the corners?

    @ Roger: Your Kawya mobile blog is an incredible resource for uses of QR Code. I love that Japanese stamp for QR codes! You’re right… from these photos, the QR codes are really tiny, so camera phones really need to have good macro lens!

  4. hey Kevin, what’s that app that you’re using on the iPhone to take photos? Doesn’t look like the regular Camera app. ­čÖé

  5. Give the NeoReader a try ­čÖé

    It is able to read and decipher all common non-proprietary 2D codes (Data Matrix, QR, Aztec, Maxi) as well as URL embedded 2D codes and all 1D UPC/EAN/Code 128 open source codes. The NeoReader supports direct and indirect code linking, which guarantees maximum interoperability with already existing platforms like 2D Data Matrix Semacodes, and Japanese QR links. This allows the user to click on a variety of codes with a single application installed on their mobile device.

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