In case you are not familiar with Quick Response Codes (QR Codes), they are matrix barcodes that can contain specific types of information (texts, web links and so on) which can be read by special QR Codes scanners or mobile phone cameras and processed using a specific app in order for them to be translated into their original context. These QR Codes have been widely used for the past years among mobile phone users because of their simple and easy method of use and has been a favorite among companies and agencies because of the large amount of information they contain (mostly in advertising their websites).
However, Rio De Janeiro, Brazil, has found a new and smart use of those codes by installing them around town in specific touristic spots, allowing visitors and tourists to scan them with their mobile phones and get helpful and important information about this site. These codes are made out of black and white stones that form beautiful mosaics that blend in properly with their environment (as they are the symbol of the city).
Next is an example of a code that, when scanned, will take you to Arpoador‘s (a massive boulder that rises at the end of Ipanema beach) official page. Try it out and see.
These mosaics attracted onlookers, who photographed the codes and were then taken to a web site that gave them information in Portuguese, Spanish or English, and a map of the area.
“If you add the number of Brazilian tourists, this tool has a great potential to be useful,” said Marcos Correa Bento, head of the city’s conservation and public works.
The city plans to install 30 of these QR codes at beaches, vistas, and historic sites, so Rio’s approximately 2 million foreign visitors can learn about the city as they walk around. The locals, who are used to giving visitors directions, also approved the innovation.
Sources: The Big Story – AP