Zig-zag format………. so-called ‘QR Code’

Here, in the next few seconds, we are going to discuss more about QR codes and their uses in libraries for better services.

Curious to know?

You are supposed and must be.

QR Code……an abbreviation of ‘Quick Response Code’ was first introduced in 1994 by Toyota subsidiary Denso-Wave in Japan in the automotive industry. Based on my study through different resources, I understood ‘The QR Code’ as an advanced version of a barcode machine-readable optical label that contains information about any item and uses four encoding modes (numeric, alphanumeric, byte/binary, and kanji) to efficiently store data. QR Code consists of black squares which are arranged in squares and can be read by any QR image processing device or scanner (2D).

How to Generate QR Code?

Generating a QR Code is very easy in nature. There is free software available online as well as offline which you download and install in the system.

Online QR code generator:

There are many online QR Code generators but I find this one very useful for my purpose.


You can generate the QR Code for URL, vCard, Text, E-Mail, SMS, Facebook, PDF, MP3, App Stores, Images, etc. You need to simply select one option and enter the information. See the example mentioned below.

I entered my website detail and created QR Code which generated the image at right. Now I can download the image and use it wherever I want to use it for my purpose.

Offline QR Code Generator:

There are many free good QR Code generators that can be downloaded but I found this one very best for my purpose. https://sourceforge.net/projects/zint/files/zint/test/

This file can be downloaded and QR Code can be generated in Windows OS.

The generated image can be saved as a PNG file and used for different purposes.

How to read QR codes?

To read QR Code, you need any device with a QR code reader or scanner which can collect the QR Code information, convert it into a readable format and display the message.

The best method is to install the freely available Android Application which can easily be downloaded and installed on any Smart Phone.


Likewise, there are many other applications that can help you to read the QR Code through your smartphone.

How to use in Academic Libraries and Education?

Any library can generate the QR Code for the following and provide better services.

1.      Website containing all the services:

If you are having a website and also a service division separately containing all the details, then simply copy the link and generate the QR Code.


2.     List of e-resources:

Generate the QR Code for a list of e-resources, if you have all listed on a single page OR you can generate the QR Code separately also for different resources.

3.     Contact Library Staff as vCard

To provide a quick and ready reference, it is always advisable to generate the QR Code of staff as vCard and list them all on a single page and make it available to the users. If the user is willing to store your contact detail, he/she is supposed only to scan the code and store the information in the smartphone. Later he can use it for his/her purpose.

4.    Posters/Pamphlets:

Some libraries have their own Posters / Pamphlets in order to promote and market their services. QR Code may be one of the easy methods in the promotion of these kinds of services by adding the QR Code on posters/pamphlets.

5.     Workshop Banners:

Libraries keep conducting workshops for research scholars, faculty, and other professionals. Sometimes, if users find it difficult to remember the dates and venue with time, a QR code may be an easy tool to reach the scheduled workshop on time and date.

6.    Information Literacy Pamphlets:

Being Information Managers and called library professionals, it is our responsibility to introduce literacy programs for the users so that users can get easy access to our library services and resources.

a.      Circulation Privileges QR Code

b.      Fine details QR Code

c.      OPAC QR Code

d.     New Arrivals List QR Code

e.      Login Page QR Code

f.       Announcements QR Code

g.      Download Page QR Code

h.     Google Map QR Code with location (How to reach?)

7.     Wi-Fi access details:

We can provide the information through QR Code about Wi-Fi access in the library if you have this provision. Users will get the details through QR code about how to use and how to access and will also be able to store the information for future use in the phone easily.


Apart from all these, there are other possible areas, which can be introduced with the help of QR Code effectively.

8.    Create your own QR Code for vCard:

The best part I found of the QR Code is that it enables you to create a vCard with your personal details which can easily be stored in Smart Phone by scanning through any 2d Image Scanner. I tried to implement it with my vCard and it worked successfully. The detail is mentioned below:

Please add, if you have any other service apart from the above-mentioned points.



DP Tripathi