Sep14 How to use Barcode Readers

In my new book, I Live in the Future & Here’s How It Works, you will find a series of little black and white squares called a QR code. Using one of a free applications on your mobile phone you can access additional content from the book.

To get a free code reader, for iPhone, Android, Palm or Blackberry, either search in your smartphone app store for “ScanLife”, or go to the following URL on your mobile phone:

Once you download the appropriate app, fire it up and you will see it access the camera on your phone, almost as if it’s taking a picture. Simply point the camera over the corresponding QR code in the book (hold it a couple of inches away) and you will be taken to a Web page with links, videos and the ability to comment on each chapter.

You don’t need to use the codes to access the additional content in the book, but it makes it easier than typing the URL of each chapter into your mobile phone. For those of you who would like to skip this process, simply point your browser to

24 Responses to How to use Barcode Readers

  1. Bob Addleton says:

    Thought there would be an iPad app. Would like to access the visual content directly from your book as it resides on my ipad.

    • John Sullivan says:

      I was also surprised that there is apparently no ap for iPad. I bought the book for my iPad and accessing additional material only through iPhone seems clumsy and Ill conceived.

  2. Jacob says:

    There is indeed a companion iPhone/iPad app for Nick’s book. Here the iTunes link:

  3. Jair says:

    Having the same problem. Downloaded the app on iPad but can’t use the QR code

  4. Connie G. says:

    For those of us without “smart” phones, how do we find the “additional information from each chapter,” referred to above regarding the QR code, when you say “it makes it easier than typing the URL of each chapter into your mobile phone.”

  5. alyssa levi says:

    Like hidden treasure. Looks disjointed on the blackberry though.

  6. Rick Lavin says:

    It’s a pity the QR Codes in the Kindle edition can’t be replaced with clickable links. As John Sullivan says, it’s weird to have to switch to a mobile phone from my iPad to access the site (which doesn’t seem to be compatible with my phone).
    The iPad app works fine, and is an interesting idea, but seems to be aimed as much at advertising the book for new readers as at serving existing readers. Those are both legitimate purposes but I don’t think it’s really ideal for people who have already bought the book to be greeted too often by “Buy the book to read more” and the like.

  7. Rick says:

    I forgot to mention that, as a practical measure, an easy way to access the online extras is to save as a bookmark in Safari. Possibly even more convenient than the iPad app, as you don’t have to keep switching between apps. An advantage of the bookmark is that videos are included, whereas they don’t seem to be in the iPad app.

  8. I was disappointed that all barcodes led to the main blog site, not a resource page for the specific chapter. Missed opportunity! ! IMHO

  9. Confession: At age 58, I love reading books and newspapers that I can hold in my hand. But I also can’t live without my Blackberry – it frees me to stay on top of my PR business when I’m not home running it.

    As a history buff, I found the history of the book fascinating, including politicians’ fear of this “radical” change. Society’s initial fear of trains in the 1800s resonated with “The Vibrator Play” that I just saw; doctors used vibrators in the 1880s to treat female “hysteria” and never imagined another “app” for it …

    Facebook has enabled me to track down free lance reporters and editors to pitch PR clients. Hence, social media has let me be creative in a way I never imagined.

    Indeed, the line between PR and technology has grown blurry.

    Cheers, Sherry Alpert
    Sherry Alpert Corporate Communications, LLC
    Canton, MA

  10. Lance says:

    I can’t quite understand how to manage the different bar codes using a bar code reader with my iphone when I am reading the book on my iPhone.

  11. Reading the book,and I like it, but the few QR Codes I sampled just brought you to Is there a missed opportunity here? Shouldn’t they each be different and bring you to a location that has specific additional content for the chapter? Not suggesting you set up your own porn site for that chapter :-)

  12. Pete Staples says:

    I have tried to use the QR code using my Android. I cannot get it to work. Has anyone succeed in getting to additional content for this book on the web using the QR codes with a Android phone? (G1 ver 1.6 )

  13. Fredrik Nordstrom says:

    I purchased the book in epub-format from but the SAME QR-code is shown at the beginning of every chapter. This code is pointing to Where have all the other QR-codes gone??

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  15. Conrad says:

    Nice idea using the QR codes Nick. I have seen these be more utilized recently but for myself, there has never been a large incentive to engage with the codes. It seems like what you are doing is pretty neat.

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  21. Carol says:

    If you really eat your own dog food, I think it has been left out too long and is rotting. This website hasn’t been updated for ages … the bio says you are working on the book, the upcoming talks were last summer, etc. As part of the way I evaluate what sources I “trust” really old stuff like this makes it seem as though the author doesn’t care, so I figure it must not be of value. I think putting out something like this and not keeping it current hurts your cause. Also, there doesn’t seem to be any real conversation. So far the book seems interesting (I have just read through chapter 1), but this site leaves me cold.


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