Every time some new print-digital product comes out, we can’t help but picture one of those lottery machines in which ping-pong balls shoot to the top of a contraption with the winning numbers. The paper-digital combinations always seem that random… and come up trumps about as often.
One of the latest: LinkNotes, paper sticky notes upon which you can also “attach” Web links, images, videos, or anything else that can be stored online by using QR codes. Here’s how they work.
Suppose you’ve been browsing the Web on your smartphone in search of some inspiration for your next brochure project, and find two or three really good examples of what you would like to do.
1. Jot down something like “a few brochure types we should consider” on a LinkNote. (LinkNotes are expected to cost about $1 per pad, says inventor Mark Crawford.)
2. Scan the unique, pre-printed QR code on the note with your smartphone using any QR-reading app. This sends you to the LinkNotes website.
3. Once there, you can add Web links, photos, videos, comments and polls, which will then be associated with that one sticky note.
4. When you or someone else scans the unique QR code on that particular LinkNote, their phones will take them to that note’s webpage, with all of the content you’ve assigned to it. (Each note’s webpage can also be accessed from any computer.)
While some or all of this data can be bookmarked and emailed the traditional way without the use of sticky notes, the paper LinkNote does what paper does best in the digital world. It allows you to separate this information from the gigabytes of data you have stored away on your computer, phone, etc. It also allows you to stick it someplace where you’re likely to find it – in your immediate real-world environment. In short, this may be one of the best uses of QR codes that we’ve seen.
LinkNotes are expected to debut by the end of the year.