QR codes are the square black and white bar-code like images which typically appear in magazines, advertising posters, stores and websites.
QR code stands for “Quick Response Code”. The system was originally used by the Japanese automotive industry to manage components. They are now commonly used to store URLs and when scanned using a smartphone or tablet they open a web page which typically contains publicity or other information.
QR codes have started to be used by museums and other attractions in Barcelona. The codes appear on information boards and labels. When you scan them with your smartphone they open a page of the museum’s website which with information about the objects on display.
This allows the museum to display lots more information than they could typically print on information boards or labels.
How to Read QR Codes With Your Smartphone or Tablet
First you need to download a QR code reading app from the App Store or Google Play. I use QR Droid which is free and also allows you to generate your own QR codes like the one above.
In order to use the QR codes your smartphone needs to be connected to the internet (Many of a Barcelona’s museums have free WIFI).
You then launch QR Droid, point your smatrphone´s camera at the QR code and scan it.
Simply click the scan tab at the bottom of the screen then move the phone slowly until it recognizes and reads the code.
The URL that is stored in the QR Code then opens on your smartphone.
You can find out more about QR codes on wikipedia here