In alphabetical order, here's a list of words you might hear when people are talking about tech.... and what they're talking about!
If you want me to add an explanation of something to the list, please get in touch!
A QR code is similar to a barcode...
Barcodes allow scanners to access product information. Smartphones, tablets and iPads can scan QR codes to access links.
The links could lead almost anywhere.
♦ A website
♦ A video clip
♦ An audio clip
♦ A photo album, or a single photo
How to Scan a QR Code
Your smartphone, tablet or iPad will need a QR code scanner app. As with other apps, they're downloaded (for free) via the App Store (Apple iPhones or iPads) or Google Play (Android smartphones or tablets).
Once you've chosen one and downloaded it, it will probably ask for permission to use your camera. Effectively, the app will turn your camera into a scanner for a few seconds while it checks out any QR codes you want to scan.
Here are some QR Code readers you might find to download:
Every time you open the scanner app, you'll be given the option to scan a QR code. The scanning process is very quick - blink and you'll miss it - but once you've pressed the button to start it off, you should see four corner markers overlaid on whatever your camera is pointing at.
Once you see those markers, you're ready to scan. Point your camera at the QR code you're curious about. If you're quick, you might see the scanner run a line over the code before you're taken to whichever link the QR code pertains to. This will take you away from the scanner app - that's normal. Websites will often load in seconds, and photos or videos won't take much longer to display.
Got an error? That's nothing you've done. It's whoever made the QR code - they've probably moved or deleted whatever you were supposed to see.
When you're ready you can return to the app using the left-curving arrow as normal (Apple iPhones or iPads, that's at the very top corner. Smartphones or tablets, it'll be at the very bottom corner).
If you give this a go, let me know where the link takes you! There are thousands of them out there. Try the newspaper, a poster at the bus stop, you might even find them on packaging in the supermarket!
SEO (that's Search Engine Optimisation)
Everyone who's got anything to do with websites, talks about SEO quite a bit! It's short for "what do people type in when they're looking for my website?"
The main thing to know about it is, it's all done through text. Of course you want to have photos on your website. People love visuals. If you saw a website that was all text, these days, you'd close it and try a different one. But for SEO, it's the text that counts.
This means three things:
The text on every page of your website will be scrutinised and logged by Google, Yahoo, MSN and any other search engine you've notified about your site
When people search for something you've got written on your site, it will come up in the results for them
So.... your text needs to be 110% on point
When I say 110%, I am not exaggerating. This is how I think of it:
Let's say that all of your site's pages have fantastic text on them. Here are some examples of what's required. Descriptions of:
what you do = 25%
who you are = 25%
where you're based = 25%
how to contact you = 25%
Here's where that extra 10% sneaks in: photos.
Let's take the photo above as an example. The SEO I have added to that photo, in the settings, says "What is SEO Search Engine Optimisation? Explanation of SEO". That's because I want to attract people who are looking for an explanation of what SEO is. If the same photo was used on another website, the text added to the photo would be completely different. It all depends on your intended audience. Think of it as the photo's description, and only the search engines can see it. So that description has to be optimised.
So the big question you need to ask yourself is, "What do I want my website to be seen for?" and then make sure that is mentioned on every page, and behind a few photos too.