"Florida State's law library is using QR codes in the stacks to help users locate the electronic version of a printed resource and as a way to make their librarians' contact information available to patrons at the swipe of a mobile phone. The University of Gloucestershire Library in the United Kingdom has added QR codes configured with the automated circulation telephone number in all of their books, making the renewal process infinitely easier" (Little 268).
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The information about Florida State comes from an article by Darla Jackson in Law Library Journal, "Standard Bar Codes Beware - Users May Prefer QR Codes." Jackson learned about the Florida State initiatives at Computers in Library 2011, where Jon Lutz and Margaret Clark presented their work with QR codes in the law library. The PowerPoint from the presentation is available at http://www.infotoday.com/CIL2011/Presentations.asp, scroll to session C303.
|Electronic access to these legal reference materials|
Little also mentions Alexander Street Press's announcement last year that "they are making all of their online music databases accessible via QR code." (The vendor advertised this service at the 2010 ALA conference and I was terribly disappointed to scan the code with my Blackberry and then be told by the rep that it only works on Android and IPhone devices.) The 2010 press release also indicated that mobile streaming access would become available for nine video collections later in the year. I checked out Classical Music Library and American History in Video and both provide a QR code as a method for sending streaming content to your mobile device. Through my library, I had to preview the new interface for Classical Music Library before I found the option to send a track to my cell phone. In both databases, when a list of results is generated, a small cell phone icon indicates the content can be sent to your mobile device. Clicking the icon offers three options: sending the content as an SMS text or via email; a short url that can be directly typed into the mobile device browser; or a QR code that can be scanned.
The QR code scanned successfully on my Blackberry using a ScanLife reader; however, the send-to-mobile dialog box includes the disclaimer, "Streaming service is currently available for Apple iPhone/iPad or Android mobile devices on a 3G network or better." The QR code resolves to the same full webpage you see in the database, not a mobile version. Indeed, I was able to access the webpage housing the video and audio, but was not able to stream the content.