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The curious origin of QR codes


The vast majority of people who have a smartphone have ever used a QR code for one purpose or another.

Now there are more of them, because in many companies, due to the pandemic that we had to endure, they decided that information that used to be on paper can now be read through this type of code right on a smartphone.

Something that seems extremely positive to us, because in this way everyone can see it carefully without disturbing anyone or, as happened in some restaurants, without having to pass menus from one to another.

The use of QR codes now has nothing to do with how they were used quite recently, which practically went unnoticed in the vast majority of cases.

But yes, there is something that many people may not know, which is that QR codes are not a current invention, the truth is that they are quite a few years old, much more than you might have imagined, in addition to the fact that they were created differently, with a history that can be quite interesting.


The curious origin of QR codes

What is it and when were QR codes created?

As we have already told you above, we are not talking about some definitely new technology, not even the slightest one.

When we talk about QR code (short for Quick Response) we mean a square barcode that can store a certain amount of information.

When we see it, we can only observe a square with many black and white pieces, but the truth is that it is an encoding in which some information is stored. Its matrix consists of placeholders, dimension lines, format string, mask pattern, and error correction level.

As we told you earlier, the birth of this type of code happened many years ago, it was in 1994 at Denso WaveJapanese multinational corporation, mainly engaged in the production of automotive components, headquartered in Aichi.

But in this company, the person responsible for this invention was engineer Masahiro Hara.

He was convinced that he had to solve some problems that they had in their production centers.

What was its development like?

At that time they used barcodes for production, distribution and sales, which made life very difficult for workers who had to scan many barcodes at the same time, because they could only store 20 alphabetic characters.

Hara then realized that these types of codes were not enough and that a lot of performance was lost in this way.

Firstly, tried to improve readers, but seeing that this is an impossible task, I decided to change the codes. It was based on the board game called Igoa very popular version of chess in Asia that gave him the idea.

yoke board games

Seeing the black and white pieces on the grid of the board, he realized that this was an easy way to convey information. So he and his team started working on the 2D code.

They faced two main problems. The first was that scanners did not recognize the locationsomething that was fixed by adding location information, which allowed the creation of a position detection pattern.

The second problem was that the shape was not recognized unless it was perfectly aligned and there was no figure like her nearby. So they decided to investigate the proportions of black and white areas in all kinds of images of any type and any format.

They realized that the least used and therefore least intrusive ratio was 1:1:3:1:1 So the scanners no longer had problems identifying the QR code, even if they weren’t 100% correct angle.

Thus, QR codes capable of store up to 7000 shapes and 10 times faster than those used before.

This new system was revolutionary, but since it didn’t have much success, the company decided to issue a patent, allowing other companies to use and develop the technology, which also means that neither Denso nor Masahiro earned a single euro from their invention.

And the fact is that the boom of QR codes has come, which thanks to smartphones and various services such as payment systems, brochures, tickets, restaurant menus, websites and even Covid certificates in a pandemic, have made over 25 years since inception, now is the time they are most used at all levels.

Source: Computer Hoy

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I am Bret Jackson, a professional journalist and author for Gadget Onus, where I specialize in writing about the gaming industry. With over 6 years of experience in my field, I have built up an extensive portfolio that ranges from reviews to interviews with top figures within the industry. My work has been featured on various news sites, providing readers with insightful analysis regarding the current state of gaming culture.


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