Monday, January 31, 2011

QR Codes Used To Track Historical Objects

Posted by Amanda Walsh

Today I read an article by Curt Hopkins on, "Spain Pioneers QR Codes to Track Ancient Artifacts" that piqued my interest; not only because I lived in Spain, but because the article showcases the marriage between history and the development of technology.

Hopkins reports, "The Center for the Studies of Archaeological and Prehistoric Heritage (CEPAP) at the Autonomous University of Barcelona have developed a process using QR codes to ID and track ancient artifacts, from kraters to potsherds." In the past, ID tags have been easily rubbed or scratched off an artifact and there was the risk of defacing the object through handwritten tags. The QR codes are two dimensional bar codes that can be scanned and pull up information like the inventory number of the object and its geo-location.

The process of using these codes has been testing for over two years. "CEPAP has managed to reduce artifact coding errors to 1% with this process." Amazing! This is just another example of the use of technology in discovery of the past.

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