Eat the Dog Food: QR Codes for Learning

Eat the Dog Food: QR Codes for Learning

At OpenSesame, we love the saying “eat the dog food”. This is particularly appropriate in our office because our CEO, Don Spear, was previously an executive and cofounder of PetSmart. Of course, it doesn’t actually mean that he wants us to eat kibble.

Don wants us to try out the products, tools and techniques that our customers use in order to do a better job meeting our customers’ needs. It’s great advice.

I eat the dog food by testing applications like Yammer, taking the courses that are for sale in our marketplace and testing out demos of learning management systems and authoring tools. My latest foray into the pet food aisle is testing the use of QR codes for information sharing.

I am looking forward to seeing how people actually use the QR codes, but in the meantime I’m eager to try out some different applications. Our first step was adding QR codes to our business cards to make it more convenient to access and share our contact information. 

We used the Kerem Merken QR Code Generator to embed a vCard in the QR code rather than just redirecting to a website. This means that our new connections can create a contact in their phone by using QR code readers like i-nigma 4 on their smart phones.

Ideas on Applications for Learning

The Kerem Merken QR code generator creates codes based on the data input you provide. You can set the QR code to do a variety of things: Embed text, create new contacts, go to a website, generate a Tweet, etc. This is an incredible tool for communication and learning.

Slap QR codes on different office doors and pieces of equipment, equip new hires with QR code reading apps and send them on a scavenger hunt through your offices to teach themselves where things are and to get acquainted with their peers.

Work with your company’s management to extend your learning enterprise: Put QR codes on product labels, print collateral and (if applicable) signs. Town Halls around the country should put QR codes on maps, street signs and interpretive panels in parks and historic sites.

QR codes are not just a novelty. They’re a way to anticipate the follow-up question and put the information directly in front of the learner. Instead of hoping that your colleagues will seek out information about the new piece of equipment in your office, QR codes or similar short cuts put the follow-up information right in front of them.

How are you using QR codes for learning and information sharing?

Photo Credit: JnL on Flickr