OUseful.Info, the blog…

Trying to find useful things to do with emerging technologies in open education

SplashURL Now Splashes QR-codes too…

Three or four weeks ago, Chris Gutteridge realised an idea I’d blurted out at Dev8D by creating SplashURL (splashurl.net – Link Sharing, Presentation Style, or watch the SplashURL screencast):

if users ever give presentations that include displaying live web pages, and are keen for audience members to view those web pages on their own computers during the presentation, an efficient way of sharing bookmarks is required. Services like the feedshow link presenter allow presentations to be constructed from lists of links piped into the presentation tool via RSS feeds, and the complete set of links demonstrated in presentation to be shared via a single URL (either of the bookmark list, or the corresponding feedshow). However, for demonstrating single links, there remains the problem of how to efficiently share the URL with the audience. SplashURL uses a popular URL minifier to create a minified version of the URL, and then display it in a large, high contrast font so that audience members can easily refer to the same page as the presenter.

Anyway, it seems like Chris has been tinkering again, and has added another feature (and associated bookmarklet) to SplashURL.net – QR codes:

So now we can splash a big QR code onto the screen – so anyone with a QR-code reading phone can photo-click straight through to the encoded URI:

Nice one, Chris :-)

PS Just in case, I’ve been thinking about possible “business models”, or at least ways of developing the app in a sustainable way. And the idea I came up with? Adding the potential to skin – or “brand” – the splash pages with university or corporate colours/logos. (As a step towards this, we could let people provide the address of a CSS file, and make sure there are lots of id and <em?class hooks on the splash pages for users to customise.)

To provide “longevity” to the minified URIs, we could create a little standalone minifier that an institution could host locally, and hence preserve the minified URIs and the addresses they point to. Local hosting of minified URIs would also make it easy for the institution to run analytics over how the minified URIs were being used…

PPS I have to admit I’ve been thinking about the name again… Chris originally coined “BigTiny” as the name for the app, and I’m starting to feel that it’s a better name than SplashURL????

Written by Tony Hirst

March 9, 2009 at 1:42 pm

Posted in Tinkering

Tagged with , , ,

5 Responses

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  1. Tony,

    I had the same idea last week while at the Future of Web Apps event. I thought the idea to add in an image say the logo of the site into the resulting splashURL page would be neat.

    Julian

    March 9, 2009 at 2:52 pm

  2. bigtiny? You can bloody pay for the domain :)

    I’m not really aiming this as being complicated or too clever. It works because it’s so damn simple.

    Also, not many people actually use it yet, so I’m not inclined to go nuts on features until it gets some real field use. I’ve learned not to build a big clever back-end on side-projects of mine, until they start to show up places.

    It’s not ‘caught the wave’ of blogger interest, so is basically almost idle…. So far.

    Chris G.

    March 9, 2009 at 11:53 pm

  3. [...] Via Jane Hart,  SplashURL.net,a way to create a short version of a given URL and display it big, so people can easily copy it from a projector to their laptop during demos. (It can also display a QR code) [...]

  4. [...] lets you create smaller urls or QR codes as described in the post SplashURL Now Splashes QR-codes too… [...]

  5. [...] to finish, a non-pipe but very useful technique for using SplashURL.net to create QRCode. These are graphical representations of URIs, to save us all from having to copy down long web [...]


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