The future of the deceased, QR Codes on headstones

QR Codes or Quick Response code was first designed for the automotive industry in Japan back in 1994 to track vehicles during manufacturing. Today QR Codes have become popular around the world as a quick link to web sites via your smartphone.

Advertisers, newspapers and bloggers would post and print QR Codes for people to find in order to drive traffic to their website or blog. Some people and companies have even started placing QR Codes on business cards.

Using an iPad a visitor scans the QR Code on a gravesite. ~ Photo Courtesy: Quiring Monuments

Now a new and interesting trend is starting. QR Codes on gravesites.

Quiring Monuments a Seattle-based tombstone company manufactures code-adorned “living headstones.” Using a smartphone mourners and visitors can scan the code off the headstone and get the life history of the deceased.

In Israel, Yoav Medan could not decide what to write on his mother’s tombstone do to a lack of space so he had a QR Code etched onto it.

And in Japan, Memorial stone maker Ishinokoe of Yamanashi will produce grave stones with QR Codes embedded in them. He calls the concept Kuyou no Mado, roughly meaning “Memorial Service Window.”

The future

Imagine years from now your grandchild taking their children to visit your grave. With their media device they scan the QR Code on your headstone. Your great-grandchildren have never met you but with their media device they see photos, videos and your life history, and a prerecorded message from you.

Related stories

QR Codes Everywhere Even on Grave Markers (abcnews.go.com)
QR Code on Tombstone Creates Dynamic Memorial (mashable.com)
QR code graves give a “Memorial Window” (japantrends.com)

Gmail for Android updates to version 2.3.5

What’s new in version 2.3.5:

  1. Save bandwidth and battery by only syncing priority mail
  2. Use label notifications to mash up filters, labels, and ringtones
  3. Remember ‘Show Pictures’ for senders
  4. Turn off sticky message actions in landscape or all orientations
  5. Better TalkBalk support for accessibility
  6. Performance improvement

 

Review: “GpsFix” by Android Labs

Google Maps, Foursquare, Gowalla, Geocaching and other GPS enabled apps require a GPS fix on your location to property provide you with the information you need. But sometimes your actual location and the one shown on your smart phone can be completely different.

GpsFix

For one reason or another your location can be skewed. This is usually cased by something interfering with the GPS signal like trees or tall buildings. Also the phones GPS/AGPS receiver is only active for a short period of time. This can cause false locations if your app did not acquire your location before the receiver deactivated.

When this happens your left with refreshing the GPS through the app your using. This option always seems to take time and it does not always work.

GpsFix is designed to sync your phone with all the satellites ahead of time.

Activate the app and click “Start Fixing.” Satellite icons will then appear indicating that the phone is locking onto different satellites in your area. GpsFix will keep the GPS/AGPS receiver on until your phones actual location is fixed.

The app works quickly, and once done back arrow out and activate the app your interested in using.

GpsFix will also give you your latitude and longitude and usually your address. The app is so good that when I tested it indoors it still found my location. Of course I was near some windows but I’ve yet to see other apps pull that off as quickly and accurately.

GpsFix is Free and is available for Android devices.

Will smartphones replace your digital camera?

I have two digital cameras. A Kodak Easyshare and a no name cheep 4MP camera.

The Kodak Easyshare took great photos, until I dropped it two years ago putting a huge scratch in the lens. It’s also acting funny. This left me with the cheep 4MP digital camera to take pictures with.

Until now.

Last winter my wife and I were looking to upgrade our cell phones. Expecting a new addition to the family we decided to go with a smartphone with a high quality camera built into it. This of course narrowed our choices but after doing some research we decided on the Droid X.

The Droid X’s camera is capable of taking photos up to 8MP at 300dpi. It has eight scene setting, flash options, face detection, picture resolution, and the ability to manually set the ISO, and shutter speed.

Very impressive stats, but it’s still a cell phone.

So how good are the photos really? Well after playing with the settings and getting comfortable with the camera I started taking serious photos. And to my surprise I was impressed with the results.

Foggy night at Waterfront Park - Taken with my "Droid X" using the manual settings. Photo by Chris Hall

Frog on the tracks - Taken with my Droid X. Photo by Chris Hall

Fountain - Taken with my Droid X. Photo by Chris Hall

Statue - Taken with my Droid X. Photo by Chris Hall

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