QR codes have been around for yonks. I remember putting them into the artwork for our Cut Flowers posters (a band I played with years back), and thinking they were the very height of modernity. They’ve never had quite the same level of success abroad that they’ve had in Japan; the reason for their appeal here apparently has a lot to do with spelling (the average Japanese net user might be able to remember the phonetics of a URL, but can they still spell it once they get home?), so it’s not much of a surprise to see that QR codes are still around and slowly continuing to evolve.
A website doing the Japanese Twitter rounds this morning offers readers the chance to personalize their QR codes, for free, by embedding names and other text. Moji-Q isn’t the only place offering this personalized QR service, of course – there are apps that can do similar tricks (Alexandr Balyberdin’s QR+, for example) – but I’ve yet to see a similar version in Japanese. I fully expect the country to go QR crazy a second time around – whether I’ll be able to read the embedded kanji is another matter altogether.