QR Codes in CAD and Revit

1 Jun

Have you noticed the proliferation of these things in magazines?

These are QR codes. And with a smartphone and a free scanner (such as RedLaser for iPhone) a person can scan this code and be taken to your website, a map, call you, receive a message, or a number of other options — its up to you what data you embed in this code.

You can generate a code using one of several free generators such as Kaywa. Or, since we are creating drawings, we can generate them natively as a hatch in AutoCAD or as an image in Revit.

Autodesk released a plugin of the month that allows you to create a QR code inside AutoCAD. The plugin is here. Once installed just type ‘QRGEN’ and follow the GUI prompts.

These QR codes can be placed in your drawing title blocks, for example.

What I find to be of the greatest benefit is the ability to track how many people have scanned your code. By using a URL shortener such as http://bit.ly you can create a short URL for your site and bit.ly generates the QR code. By entering the URL provided with a ‘+’ sign, you will see a tally of how many people scanned your code and when. This means you can create project specific codes and monitor their effectiveness for marketing purposes.

I just provided one example of using QR codes in a drawing, and a very simple one at that. You could do a million other things, such as place one next to a detail that takes you to a 3D model of the detail. Place one on your signage at the site that takes you to a render of what the finished building will look like. Put one on your business card that updates a persons contacts using a vcard.

Happy scanning.

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