Monday, August 4, 2014

Handicapped QR Codes

Quote from the movie National Treasure: "Over time the clues were lost or forgotten!"
Handicapped QR Code

Everybody knows how imported it is to keep track of pin-code, login details and other credentials, if they are lost or damaged it leads to serious problems. Recently I've received two separate plea's for help with regards to QR-Code content.

In both cases the link in the QR Code itself was no longer pointing to the correct content. The more serious of the two was a link to YouTube content that was deleted by mistake.

The ID that YouTube uses to identify the content could not be revived! Brochures containing a QR Code pointing to this YouTube content, now a dead link, were already printed in huge quantities.

A QR Code severely handicapped.

This is one of many reasons to make use of an URL shortening service. Services like and linkfire ( not only supply the service of shortening the URL, they also provide global tracking, tracing and monitoring. And as a paid service the used link can also be re-targeted, a very helpful feature for a situation as described above, but it can also be used to re-use a once made enhanced code for later marketing campaigns.

It is this kind of back-end service that make QR Code dynamic, the content inside the code itself is always static!

A shorter URL requires less information in the QR Code itself, the resulting lower version of the QR Code provides the possibility to increase the resolution of the image if the reserved space for the code is limited. Higher resolution codes scan faster and open the possibility for graphical integration, where both the content and the image are protected by the error correction.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Vanity in BitCoins

Quote from the movie The Devil's Advocate: "Vanity definitely my favorite sin."

The address generation of a BitCoin wallet uses similar cryptography routines as is used for mining the coins themselves. Logic if you consider the address is part of the bit-coin transaction itself.

By running a "brute force" address generator, the generated walled ID can be compared with a wanted result. Millions upon millions private keys have been hash'd to get the ID as in the QR Code.
A wallet ID with the Prefix "1BTC4Me....."

Generating this ID gives an indication of the computing power and/or luck needed to hack an actual bit-coin wallet. On my system getting this prefix took about 2.5 hours. The software itself indicated that getting to 50% probability that a key generated this specific prefix was 5.5 hours.

For each additional character added to the prefix this time is multiplied by a factor of roughly 58. This number of 58 can be computed from the valid characters; these are alphanumeric with some exceptions for look-alike like the lower case L, and zero, or just the fact its is a base58 representation :-)
Finding the prefix "1BTC4You.." indicates a 12 day running time to hit the 50% probability mark.
Finding the prefix "1Kangaderoo.." indicates a 6700 year running time to hit the 50% probability mark.

Using a crypto coin mining setup can increase your computing power, thus reducing the running time; the chance to find/hack the private-key for this particular address is still slim.

Having someone else to generate the address for you seems like a security issue, if a third party generates the key it is no longer a private key. The solution is to generate a private and public key first, use this public key in the generation process to generate a new partial private key,
These two private keys can be combined, to generate a third and final private key yielding your wanted BTC wallet ID prefix. Don't have the computing power? There is a pool where you could submit your request.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Error free QR Code enhancement.

Quote from the movie Ocean's Twelve: "It is all about error correction."

Saint Patrick's day QR CodeThe origin of the QR Code was to be used in heavy industry, car parts and manufacturing to be precise. Since in this environment the risk that the tag itself could be damaged is high, the error correction algorithm was added to the content of the code.
Since now the QR Code is more commonly used, even in environments where the chance of damaging is smaller, the error correction is currently more and more used to compensate for graphical enhancement.
To stay more in line with the original purpose of the error correction algorithm, Kangaderoo offers graphical enhanced QR Code where not only the the scan-able content of the code, but also the graphical enhancement is actual QR Code content.
Thus creating QR Codes free of content errors.
With this technique the QR Code itself is more likely to be scanned without problems on most of currently available QR reader applications. There are quality differences between the various reader apps, so if you'd like your QR Code to be scan-able by just about every QR Code reader, start at the basis and keep your enhanced QR Code as compliant as possible with the QR Code specifications.
You cannot control the reader app your targeted audience is using, the only aspect that you can control is the QR Code itself.
Unless you are willing to rely on luck, I even have an error free QR Code for that :-).

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Making your QR Code Friendlier.

Quote from the movie Batman & Robin: "Now what, call a taxi?!"
Custom QR Code with a Taxi Cab

QR Codes should make scanning a code a easier experience that the alternative; i.e. for hyperlinks typing the complete address, or for telephone numbers, remembering the number on a taxi, and just loose the two last digits because it just turned a corner.

Sure the QR Code reader app needs to start, but on modern telephones its just a matter of placing the reader app with your favorites for easy access.

Enhancing a QR Code should give it a more friendly appearance, just look at the two codes in this blog,

Both codes are identical with regard to the content, size, rotation and QR Code mask.

The difference is the rounded corners, the integrated image containing a friendly face, and the new calculated error correction to keep this QR Code fast scanning and error free.

Then again, would I require a taxi, I'd probably raise my hand and yell "TAXI".

Get you own copy of this code, with the content of your choice (hyperlink, telephone number) from my store @

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Be QReative...

Quote from the movie Ocean's Eleven: "If that's not your brand of vodka..."

Creating brand awareness is one of the mayor goals for marketeers.
A couple of golden idea's to increase brand awareness have been made in the past.
Two of the best known examples:

Guinness, known as a beer brewery has their name linked to the Guinness World Records.

Michelin, known for car tires has their name linked to Michelin Guide containing ratings for restaurants.

The lesson I learn from these examples is that I always have to keep an open mind, opportunities might pop-up in unexpected places.

Be open minded and creative, and your idea's might turn into gold!

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Even more new coins

Quote from the movie Jumper: "They couldn't make heads or tails of it."

Euro coin QR Code
A big difference between digital crypto currency and real coins is that real coins can be flipped.

Call it.. heads or tails. A method to make a choice.

The head side of the valid currency in the Netherlands is the reigning monarch.

Last year April, our queen was replaced by a king. This also called for a new version of the dutch Euro where the portrait of Willem-Alexander needed to be placed.

The displayed QR Code is based on the artwork that was used to make the new coinage.

Interested in the new set of euro coins? More information can be found here.
Interested in the QR Codes? Find more on my website, or order your own in my webshop.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Dangers of social media promotions.

Quote from the movie Lethal Weapon 2: "You haven't heard about me? l got a bad reputation."
Olympic QR Code

The internet, and especially social media like Facebook, Twitter and blogging is a nice way to promote products like Custom QR Codes.
My QR Codes, like the one displayed on the left are graphically enhanced.
In order to promote these codes I occasionally make a code with a image that is related to current events, this one has an Olympic theme.

But there is a downside to promoting these QR Codes on social media. The link I place in these promotional codes uses the shortening service, Using that service an advertisement will be shown before linking to the actual content i.e. a link to my site for promotional qr-codes.

I was unpleasantly surprised when after placing this code on Twitter the following happened.
I had to look-up what mobogenie actually means :-) It looks like the advertisement that the service showed when the code was scanned was not appreciated. The "bad reputation" then automatically roll's back to the QR Code itself. The result is very unfortunate, someone who liked the graphical appeal of the image enough to re-tweet the original message deletes this tweet. An action that kind of kill's the promotional intent. My efforts to repair the damage resulted in no-replies.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Out with the new, in with the even newer...

Quote from the movie Spider-Man: "The end of one thing, the start of something new."

Last week a new product was available (at pre-order) for the Scrypt based crypto coin miners. An ASIC (application specific integrated circuit) based solution. This new mining hardware is specified at 5MH/s, requiring just 70 Watt's of power. This hashing to power ratio definitely outperforms the GPU based mining rigs.

It looks that the Scrypt based currencies like Litecoin will be probably be mined by the bigger players, just as happened before with BitCoin mining; totally locking out the normal guy.
This is not the type of decentralization that was intended when the currencies were made, but making an ASIC is a logical technological move whenever there is (easy?) money to be made.

It is no surprise that at this moment in time a new coin enters the market; a new coin with a small protocol adaptation to render the new ASIC's unusable for this currency.

This new coin is called VertCoin; it is based on the Scrypt protocol, but is made adaptive in the memory requirement. Currently the amount of memory needed for mining is double compared to standard Scrypt based coins, the adaptability of the protocol will make it easy to double this memory requirement again and again and again. This feature will making an ASIC for this coin a risk, now just waiting for this crypto-currency to gain some popularity and value.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Relink your QR Code

Quote from the movie Watchmen: "You're my only remaining link to the world."

I've written about dynamic codes before. The link in your qr code is first to a forwarding service.
This service than gives the added service of changing the destination of the QR Code itself.

It is a nice way to reuse a graphically enhanced QR Code again and again and again.

But is you require a branded code to stay active while starting a new campaign? or need a branded QR Code with the same look and feel for multiple products?

Offering a service where a once branded QR Code can be copied with new content is currently expanded with the possibility to order codes that have been part of this blog in the past.
Check "The Relinker" @
Interested in a Kangaderoo Custom QR Code that is not in the shop yet, just use the contact form, and I will try to make it available as soon as possible. Suggestions for new codes are also appreciated.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Spending Cryptocoins!

Quote from the movie Heat: "But l don´t have to sell this, you know it. This kind of shit here sells itself." Sex sells QR Code

Sex and gambling. For most self-respecting companies usually not the topics you want to be associated with.
So why mention them in the first place?

Because even when you are not directly involved with adult and or gambling industry, monitoring these two topics can deliver important indicators to determine your own strategy.

Both industries have been around since humans started to settle and sometimes even been the driving force for success or failure of new inventions.

The best example I can deliver for this hypothesis is the video-tape history, that is; if you are old enough to remember what a video-tape is. :-) I remember that there were three mayor technologies for the video-tape at the time. BetaMax, V2000 and VHS. After just a short time only VHS remained as mayor system. This was not because it was the technological best system, but because the it was the system that delivered the adult movies. And later history repeated itself with Blu-ray vs hd-dvd.

Therefore I think that both sex and gambling will be a mayor contributor to the success or failure of crypto currencies. Due to the nature of crypto currencies they are the ideal way for payments on the internet, with anonymity as one of the key features. I've already seen some gambling sites accepting or even working only with Bitcoin. And if you are older than 18, you should be able to find the adult sites accepting Bitcoin on your own. :-)

But both industries will require any crypto currency to be a steady, globally accepted coin. Just like any other business, participation and involvement needs to be worth while.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Got QR-Code?

Quote from the movie Garfield: "Got milk?"
milk qr code

Advertisement is all about getting your message across. The easiest way to make a message more appealing is to use graphics.

QR Codes can accomplished a multiple task in your advertisements.

Its main usage is to provide a fast and easy way to link your advertisement to the internet by using the qr code as a printed hyperlink, the call to action in your advertisement.

Since the QR code itself is also a graphic, with some alteration its graphical appeal can be made to match the remainder of the advertisement, even containing a visual message of its own.

The third task of the code is to measure the advertisement effectiveness by measuring the amount of scans, locations, time, type of mobile device used, etc,

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Lovely QR Codes.

Quote from the movie The Addams Family: "You are going to love this."
qr code valentine

A pictures can say more than a thousand words! In case of a QR Code these thousand words and the picture can be combined.

Using graphical enhancement a QR Code can already increase its appeal. From a black and white squired picture to a smooth graphic is just the first step. Combine this enhanced graphic with an incentive to be scanned.

If the content of the QR Code is a link to a website, this website must be designed for mobile use, since the chance that this code is scanned with a desktop computer is slim to none.

Although I think it would not be a good idea to use thousand words on this website, a mobile device is just not the right device to read a lot of text :-). Besides, how may words would you need for a valentine message?

Sunday, January 5, 2014


Quote from the movie: "Mice that roll barrels. Mice that stack coins."
Coins QR Code
After the relative success of BitCoin a lot of new alternative crypto currencies have been introduced. It is very hard to differentiate between the actual valid coins and coins that are better described as a Ponzi scheme.

In a Ponzi scheme the money of new investors is used to pay the old investors. This pyramid system works as long as new investors can be attracted.

Crypto currencies need to attract active users in order to keep the network alive, when a lot of nodes of the network is no longer working, the transactions will stop, rendering this currency worthless.

In order to attract these new users, a reward system needs to be in place. This reward can be obtained by mining, when calculating new blocks in the system is rewarded by new coins and/or to reward with transaction fees. There is an issue with both reward systems with regards to attract new users.
In the first system witch is usually proof of work, each user needs to add a lot of processing power in order to obtain new coins. The second system, usually based on proof of stake, the biggest reward is for the users with the highest bankroll.

But in the end we are talking about money. And the main purpose of money is to trade goods and services. So the acceptance of the crypto currency as a means to make payments is the most important and it seems the most overlooked property.

The main purpose of any new crypto coin should be to become the most accepted payment system, Not a get rich fast for the start-up crew, early adopters or users with the highest processing power. In that case parallels with a Ponzi scheme are easily made.

Friday, January 3, 2014

The more things change......

Quote from the movie Inception: "This is great but I'm telling you, if you keep changing things like this..."

In my previous blog entry I introduced the NXT coin as the new crypto currency. It seemed that this coin was so new that even the logo was not fixed yet when I created the QR Code Walled ID.

Back to the drawing board :-)

Here is the new wallet, I hope this one is fixed... for the moment.