I’ve read about these tattoos for a few years now, but only recently have they moved from obscure websites to popular culture. Many people like them because they make some sort of philosophical statement about numbers, databases and general consumerism, but I just think they are kinda neat because they make us look like we are part of the resistance fighting against the Terminators.
But don’t be fooled, there is much more to these tattoos than just a cool design. These barcodes are readable by any iPhone or QR scanner. The embedded information can be text, a URL or any other data. I think it would be awesome if we could upload and change the information on our QR code tattoo whenever we wanted to. For example, going to a new doctor? Just hit your laptop before you leave home, click a button, and upload all your medical history to your tattoo. When you get to the doctor, forget filling out a dozen pages of forms, just get scanned.
What about when applying for a new job? Your potential employer could give you one scan to download your entire employment history and references. How about maintaining all your social networking information from your QR code tattoo? You meet someone when you’re out, you want to keep in touch, just scan each other’s body to automatically follow that person on Twitter, friend them on Facebook, link up on LinkedIn, etc…
I could go on and on with ideas about how this type of tattoo could be useful. From what I’ve read, a lot of people get QR code tattoos that aren’t scannable. To me, that removes all the geeky goodness from the process, but to each his own! If you aren’t quite brave enough to get one of these yet, you can go to Barcode Tattoos and buy 3 temporary ones for 3 bucks.