Thursday, July 22, 2010

Idealab idea IN YOUR FACE!

Although the project hasn't started yet, we've been kicking ideas around pretty mercilessly at the Freeman's parent company IdeaLab Facebook page, one of the Journal Register Company's new initiatives.

(As mentioned on July 12, 17 lucky people and myself will be experimenting with the latest technology and tools. We're getting gadgets - an iPad, and smartphone of our choice and a netbook - 10 hours of paid free time per week and $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$500 per month on top. There are no rules. You can even write "$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$.")

One suggestion by Viktoria Sundqvist, editor of the Middletown Press in Connecticut, got me going. What if you were to put Quick Response coding on the paper to unlock features on your smartphone? "This will allow readers to snap a picture of the code with their cell phones and immediately get access to our online edition as the phone will translate the QR code," she wrote.

I gave it a shot.

Sweet. Can't wait to get started.

UPDATE: I'm informed by a party-pooping publisher from Torrington, Conn., that it's probably faster to type the web address (I'm assuming it's a shortened version like and not something like

It is.

But what if the code was used for something like this?

In a more theoretical and utilitarian way (and I'm not even claiming to know how to do this), what if you use your lap top's camera on a Quick Response code over a story about Kingston crime and a 3-D map of Kingston with stats (ala popped up on your screen?

What do you think?