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Getting Started

Examples and case studies

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Industrial, Maintenance, & Equipment manufacturers

While QRnotes is a “general purpose” tool, it was originally designed for “facilities” and “manufacturing plants”. In fact QRnotes “templates” were specifically designed to reduce the costs and increased accuracy where duplicate pieces of equipment are involved ( 12 of pump type #1, 44 of pump type #2 , etc) .

Benefits include :
  1. Reduced direct costs
    • Reduced labor - the EXACT and CORRECT information is immediately displayed on user's smartphone or tablet - no searching
    • Reduced errors and associated costs -, downtime, repair costs
    • Reduced training costs - training can be done AT the machine
    • Reduced documentation , distribution and update costs - initial costs and updating costs are both reduced
    • Reduced costs due to injury - operators are more likely to look at safety instructions that are at their fingertips

  2. Improved Safety & Compliance
    • As noted above : operators are more likely to look at safety instructions that are at their fingertips
    • QRnotes can be used to help established who did and did NOT look at safety instructions
    • Updates to safety instructions can be pushed out to all stations immediately, eliminating out of date instructions

  3. Reduced downtime and increased visibility
    • Problem reporting can be done instantly via a simple scan - Maintenance can receive an instant email documenting the exact piece of equipment , its location, the problem, and the reporting person
    • Collecting installation , usage, downtime, and repair data aids in management decisions
    • Removed equipment , reasons, and disposal method can be collected and is available in the database after the equipment is gone.
    • Reports of all equipment, usage, repairs, downtime - etc can be created


Typical Usage
In a typical use a QRnotes tag , metal or paper depending on the environment, is placed on an incoming or existing piece of equipment or even a “system” (multiple pieces of connected equipment) . The QRnotes subscriber then scans the tag an can select (or create) a template that can be used to automatically generate the records (which can be edited) OR the subscriber can start from scratch. The QRnotes subscriber then enters pertinent data, for example :
  1. Vendor & PO (date is automatic), who installed & verified
  2. Link to vendors installation page - picture of uninstalled equipment and any issues
  3. Link to maintenance page
  4. Safety instructions and pictures
  5. General use instructions and pictures
  6. Repair requests link

Case 1 : Problem : Maintenance and operations personnel a) were spending too much time searching for documentation ( installation, usage, maintenance, safety , etc) and b) found the documentation was poor due to a lack of "real" or detailed pictures or often did not exist at all due to the work involved in creating it.

As a result time was wasted in "searching" , time pressured personnel did not collect and read the required data, or the original documentation had not been saved.

There was also no way of validating whom had read which information.

Solution :
Each piece of equipment is given a QRnotes tag, the tag is scanned and the new info is entered into the QRnotes system . If the equipment is a duplicate of a piece with an existing QRnote, that information can be automatically copied - and any adjustments made. Smartphones were used to take pictures that greatly aided the written descriptions.

If there are existing websites that provides documentation about the equipment, a web link is added in QRnotes. If there are a limited amount of paper documents , the user takes a picture of the documents via QRnotes, and and if there are none of the above the user types in basic information.

In some cases the "logon" option is used to require users to logon. The logon information is then recorded for determining whom used / read the documentation and when.

Results :
Increased efficiency and safety are achieved by making operational information (notes, manuals, etc) "instantly" available at the point of use and providing up to date safety information : There is no searching for documents, and the wrong documents are never used. Workers do not feel pressured to skip consulting documentation because of the time involved in locating it. Creating new documentation is simple and fast.


Case 2 : Problem : An industrial facility continuously receives , installs, maintains, and replaces a variety of equipment such as pumps , conveyors, and transportation equipment . Tracking that equipment throughout it's life cycle required special software , special equipment (barcode scanners, etc), and cumbersome 'administrative' work involved in receiving and tagging, transferring locations, and tracking the scrape was often not done do to the work involved and the lack of resources.

As a result, there was no real tracking of the equipment's life cycle. Audits required extensive labor and time to find the equipment, and any equipment not found was assumed "removed" but with no verifications or reasons for the removal.

Solution :
QRnotes labels were made available at the receiving points- the receiver simply applies the label to the item and uses his phone to record any initial notes about the equipment. As the equipment is transferred, maintained or scrapped, the user again scans the QRnote with his phone and enters the applicable information. Individuals and departments that receive assets can EASILY also record the transfer out of their control because, with QRnotes, everything then need to do so is right on their phone and instantly available.

Results :
Better use of assets, reduced costs via saving in audits , increased tracking as personnel whom received equipment were recorded and THEY verified that transfers out of their control were recorded. Increased reliability as the lifecyles of products is now recorded and product comparisons are easier .


Case 3 : Problem : : Equipment supplier has poor registration percentages and unnecessary 'help desk' calls as a result of missing or out of date manuals at client's site.

Solution :
Suppliers places a QRnote with pre-loaded links , pictures, and text documentation info on equipment prior to shipping.


Results :
Reduced help desk costs as manuals are ALWAYS present via QR scan, increased registration , increase sales opportunity as each client QR scans give opportunity to sale

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Medical jewelry, links to portals, medical histories, ADA, etc

Case 1 : Problem : : Patients with cognitive issues can find themselves in situations where care givers that are knowledgeable of their histories and needs are not present.

Solution :
Metal or other permanent QRnotes labels are placed on patients 'non-removable' jewelry (bracelets , etc). QRnotes can also be printed on "iron on" paper that can then be "ironed on" to the patient's clothing. Patient's care giver then scans the QRnote and adds applicable contact and treatment information, pictures, web links. (When using multiple QRnote labels, one label is easily linked to the 'master' , effectively making copies of the original QRnote.)

When needed "other" individuals can scan the QRnote to get needed information to help patient.

As situations change the QRnotes information can be updated remotely by care givers. HIPAA privacy rules are easily maintained by use of a free Goggle Document page which can be 'published but restricted' to listed personnel - all protected by Goggle level security to access data.


Results :
Patients have reduced trauma plus faster and better treatment. Families have increased level of assurance. Care givers have faster and more accurate information - all with options for HIPAA security



Case 2 : Problem : Many patients do not remember medical histories and prescriptions and cannot provide that information to medical personnel such as emergency rooms and new physicians.

Solution :
A QRnote is attached to an insurance card and medical information is entered on to it.

Results : Patients or medical professionals can scan the patients insurance card QRnote and read the required medical information . If desired, the QRnote can be password protected and the phone number of next of kin that then provides the password .



Case 3 : Problem : A variety of visual , speech, and cognitive disorders can prevent a person from reading and/or talking (see ADA requirements)

Solution :
QRnotes has built in "Text-To-Speech" capabilities with a "speaking" icon automatically placed under each text field. Pressing the "speaking" icon causes the text in the associated text fields to be read out loud.

Results :
A QRnote is placed on an item or items that the user normally has with them. The patient can scan the QRnote and select the note with the desired text by reading or by looking at the attached image. The patient then just presses the "Text-To_Speech" icon to have the desired text read out-loud to either themselves or the people around them.


Case 4 : Problem : Many medical providers, specifically Medicaid and Medicare, have website portals (CMS, etc) but the links are too difficult and complex for patients to follow. In many cases payments are negatively effected if a percentage of customers do not use Internet portals.

Solution :
A QRnote is attached to the providers "CMS type card" with the providers portal link pre-configured.

Results : Patients can scan the QRnote on their 'CMS type card' and be automatically taken to the portal. FASter and more accurate information improves care and , in some case, payments.




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Legal documents, etc -searchable document notes


Case 1 : Problem : A document reviewer, or multiple document reviewers, need to note and comment on various information on different pages of a document and then to later be able to find that information and comments again quickly and to collate the comments from different authors.

Solution :
QRnotes allows for the collection of information by multiple reviewers and the searching of comments by word or reviewer name.

Initial reviewer applies a QRnote label to a document and enters a brief description of the document. If the document is part of a 'case' then the case number is also recorded as part of that first record. For each successive notes the page # ( or "Bates" ), being reviewed is the first text in the description - followed by any comments and or pictures. Optionally, reviewers use smartphones to take pictures of items or even text or attach physical 'sticky arrows' next to the area of interest on the page and give the sticky arrow a number which is then refereed to in QRnotes

So, for instance, when a new contract is received - the initial receiver places a QRnotes label on the document then scans the QRnotes label and enters basic information about the contract into QRnotes. The contract is then copied and distributed to the team. As each team member has a question or comment they scan the QRnote label , enter the page# and the concern or question. The concerns and questions can be seen by all and edited or removed by members with the correct passwords.

Results :

Searches can be done quickly by page, or text and sorted by page or by author. Any reviewer can see ALL reviewers notes and get the benefit of the teams ideas and viewpoints.



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Asset tracking

Case 1 : Problem : A facility continuously receives , installs, maintains, and replaces a variety of equipment. Tracking that equipment throughout it's life cycle required special software , special equipment (barcode scanners, etc), and cumbersome 'administrative' work involved in receiving and tagging, transferring locations, and tracking the scrape was often not done do to the work involved and the lack of resources.

As a result, there was no real tracking of the equipment's life cycle. Audits required extensive labor and time to find the equipment, and any equipment not found was assumed "removed" but with no verifications or reasons for the removal. Inevitably "finger pointing" results from the lack of control.

Solution :
QRnotes labels were made available at the receiving points- the receiver simply applies the label to the item and uses his phone to record any initial notes about the equipment. As the equipment is transferred, maintained or scrapped, the user again scans the QRnote with his phone and enters the applicable information. Individuals and departments that receive assets can EASILY also record the transfer out of their control because, with QRnotes, everything then need to do is right on their phones and instantly available.

Results :
Better use of assets, reduced costs via saving in audits , increased tracking as personnel whom received equipment were recorded and THEY verified that transfers out of their control were recorded. Increased reliability as the lifecyles of products is now recorded and product comparisons are easier .




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'High Tech Sticky Notes' - cleaner, searchable, notes, web links and snaps

Case 1 : Problem : While "sticky notes" are certainly one of the all time great ideas of our time , they have several severe limitation. You have a limited amount of text space , they can't be easily changed, you can't have pictures, etc.

Solution : By using a QRnotes label instead of a "sticky note", or even a QRnotes label ON a "sticky note" you can eliminate the weaknesses of a sticky note and make the note MUCH more powerful.

Results : QR "sticky" notes have more uses and are more powerful than "paper sticky notes".





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Sales & Auction info, pictures, etc

Case 1: Problem : The standard "For Sale" sign grabs attention but is limited to the amount of data and pictures it can have about the "for sale" item. Commercial "QR code" programs are expensive, cumbersome, and restrictive.

Solution : QRnotes can link a virtually unlimited amount of information to an item for customers to review , including links to videos and or Goggle word documents, etc.

Results : QRnotes delivers increased sales with reduced sales person efforts. In literally seconds, virtually ANY item can have a custom QRnotes label assign to it. Customers receive complete and RELIABLE information on any product 24/7 and via text, pictures, or videos.





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Assembly & Construction

Case 1: Problem : The traditional approach to assembly instructions has been thru a combination of text and drawings. In some cases the assembly items are marked with unique identifiers to help with the assembly. But text and drawing are often inadequate and the pictures blurred - especially after reproduction. In addition all these methods are static - so if problems or changes occur AFTER the instructions are printed they cannot be updated.

Solution : By using a QRnotes on critical components the 'QRnote "author" can update the note when ever needed and include as many detailed photos as desired.

Results : The assembler can read up-to-date information and see detailed pictures which they can expand to see as much data as they need. Field assembly is quicker and more reliable. As the help desk answers questions they can update the information on the QRnote from their office and that will update the information for everyone.





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Transportation and Tracking


Case 1 : Problem : There are literally millions of trailers on the road , many of which carry dangerous cargo. While mandated "safety signs" show emergency response personnel the general nature of the trailers contents, that information is limited. In an emergency there is not time to place calls to find out specifics.

Solution : Place a "prominent" QRnote on each trailer and have the information on how to handle the contents , or a link - entered into QRnotes. Update the information as the contents of the trailer change. Results : Increased safety for early responders and less damage of product by proper handling during an emergency.




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Kiosks and Help centers

Case 1: Problem : Computer based kiosks have become the defacto method of advising people about a facility. Their cost is easily justified in stable high traffic areas however that is not so in lower traffic areas nor in areas where layout and related information change quickly.

Solution : QRnotes offers an extremely cheap and highly adaptable way of providing a kiosk. The author creates a large QRnotes label ( QR codes can be as large as needed) and directs visitors to it as a kiosk. Users scan the kiosk and get instructions on using the program , along with maps and a search field. There is also a speech-to-text button and the kiosk can support any language

As information changes, the author can update the QRnotes kiosk in seconds.

Results : Kiosks are now a reasonable solution for even low volume traffic as well as high volume changes.




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Safety,Security,and validation

Case 1: Problem : A school has an after school child pickup car lane that parents and guardians drive into to pickup their respective children. The school's 'pickup attendant' needs to validate that the children only go with with adults with the proper clearance. "clearance' can be dynamic with new adults receiving it AND having it pulled on a regular basis.

Solution : When an adult is being given clearance to pickup a child or children, the school issues them a badge with a QRnote on it. The adults name and the name of the children they are allowed to pickup are entered into the QRnote and a picture of the adult is also entered into the QRnotes. The school can change teh clearance and the name of the children associated with the clearance at anytime.

When a parent or guardian arrives at the school the QRnote on the bade is scanned and the children that adult has permission to pickup is displayed and the school's pickup attendant allows the child to leave with the adult. If the parent shows up without a badge, the attendant can search QRnotes by the parents name and see the list of 'cleared' children and a picture of the parent.

Results : The children are kept safe and at very little cost to the school .




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Traceability and Anti-Counterfeiting

Both product traceability and anti-counterfeiting efforts often require muliple complex and expensive systems requiring extensive coordination throughout a products supply-chain and life cycle. QRnotes can provide both functions at almost no costs, with no special coordintion, and using only the smartphones and/or tablets that already exist.

QRnotes allows for the ENTIRE supply chain of an item to be EASILY and CHEAPLY tracked - from the bottom up, top down ofr starting anywhere in the middle.

If someone in the supply chain determines that there was an issue with an item/lot/package - that information can be conveyed to the ENTIRE distribution chain ( each company sees it's supplier's info - but not its customer's HOWEVER QRnotes has the COMPLETE supplychain information and can distribute viatal information in the case of an emergency )

**QRnotes ability to create "links" between differnt QRnotes also allows users to link QRnotes together then to track their movement by the scanning of just one of the linked QRnotes. So, for instance, we can give a pallet a QRnotes lbel nd then put items on the pallet and link them to the pallet's QRnote. Users who then scan the pallet QRnotes are establishing tracking for all the items on the pallet as well. The QRnotes can also be "de-linked" at anytime.

Tracebility

Case 1: Problem : The food industry is required to establish traceability at all stages of the food supply chain. For businesses in the US food supply chain this is charcterized by the FSMA (Food Safety Modernization Act) and other laws. But laws are only part of the concern. Product liability, risk of reputation, and concern for public safety are even bigger drivers to want to assure the safety of the supply chain.


A food ingreidinet supplier preprints a number of QRnotes label from the QRnotes website (NO information is required except the users QRnotes logon info) . WHen a product is about to be shipped a worker attaches one of the QRnotes labels to the item and scans it with his smartphone. THe item is shipped.

The receiver scans the QRnotes label with their smartphone and the history of the previous scans are displayed - including the location where last scanned and the device id (IP address) the shipper thant originally scanned it.

If this is a distribution location the ditributor simply scans the existing QRnotes label originally attached by the original supplier . THis can be doen at receiving, at shipping, or both. THe "owner" of the QRnotes label can see the "who when, and where of every scan.

If this is a manufacturer that will be using the item as an ingriedient the receiving dock scans the QRnotes - which establishes their receipt and allows them to veify the supplychain that brough the ingriedient in. IF DESIRED a the manufacturer can attach their own new QRnotes label to the item they are producing and scan the original ingriendents QRnotes label and establish a link - thus buildin a COMPLETE supply chain trace.


Anti-Counterfeiting

Case 1: Problem : Counterfeiting is a huge finacial and safety issue for a variety of industries including aerospace, medical, food, and pharmaceutical. For instance, a 2011 investigation found over 1,000,000 (one million) counterfeit incidents for US Military aircraft alone.
( http://www.havocscope.com/tag/counterfeit-aircraft-parts/ ).

While it is possible for shipper and receiver of each item to corrdinate and validate lots and serial numbers - it is expensive , time consuming, and requires a significant and ongoing effort.
QRnotes offer two levels of anti-counterfeit protection - PGP "Pretty Good Protection" and "Very Good Protection" , depending on the supply chain needs

Solution 1 "Pretty Good Protection": QRnotes can easily and dramatically reduce most counterfeits via an optional 'validation code' that is embeded at the time the QR code is printed.
Unlike traditonal QRnotes codes which are based upon an an "Account-Seqential Number" value, the "validation option" tacks on an additonal random number to the code. When a user scans a QRnote that was created with the optional validation code, the code has to match not only the Account and seqential number but also the randomly assigned number.
When the user scans the validation code QRnotes informs the user of both the QRnotes owner (shipper) and that the validation code is valid or invalid, and tells the scanner how often the code has been scanned. and where it was scanned (based upon the IP address of the device).
This prevents most counterfeiting as the chances of corrctly guessing and account, sequentioal number AND a random number are highly unlikely; the user see the history or scanning locations; and the reporting will alert the scanner of any abnormal or excessive scans or scan locations.

PGP protection is, indeed "pretty good" and will stop most countrfeiting or , at least, inform both the QRnotes owner and the user scanning the tag that the tag is either counterfeit or appears to have been copied and used in multiple locations.


When client deems that PGP is "not good enough" then "VGP"...

...

Solution 2 "Very Good Protection" (VGP) : Building on the "1 step" PGP approach above, after the receiver scans the QR code, QRnotes generates a random 4 digit code which is displayed to the receiver.

The receiver , independently, goes to a specail QRnotes website (no link is provided to prevent "catfishing", "spoofing", etc) and enteres the 4 character string. Qrnotes compares the entered code and confirms the code and confirms the match - OR sends a failure message and the receiver will need to rescan to get a new random string. A time stamped record is kept of every attempt at code verification, the status (success or fail) and the ip address of the device that entered the verification code.

Results : Counterfeiting is easily , efficiently, and cost effectively stopped at the receiving dock - saving lives , money , and reputations.





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Lab Samples - Investigation & Evidence Tracking

Case 1: Problem :The collecting of evidence needs to be formalized , systematic, and above reproach. Paper based systems can work if the users are ALWAYS accurate and thorough but but , by their nature, introduce "concerns".

Linking various pieces for collected data, pictures, and physical evidence can, of course, be done via manual means but assumes a near "obsessive" personailty of the invetigators and considerable additonal work in both the collection process and in the reviewing of data .

The core-complexity of most paper based "bag it, and tag it" systems is that there is no BUILT-IN linkage between tags , let alone data, pictures, and weblinks


Solution : While QRnotes obviously allows the printing of tags as well as the linking of unlimted amounts of data , pictures, and weblinks - the "Business" version also allows for the one-step linkage of differnt QR tags ( i.e. Linked "bag-it and tag-it operations" with tags placed on collection containers or the items themselves) So a user may , at anytime scan an existing tag already linked to an investigation- then scan a new tag and select the "link option" . The tags are now tied together so the user may scan any one of the linked tags and easily migrate thru all the linked tags.

In the case of data and pictures, and physical web links - mutliple records can be added to any QRnote . In the case of physical samples , each piece of evidence ( or the container (bag, etc) it is placed in is given a QRnote. The investigator scans the QRnote, enters the case number, types in notes, and takes photos of where the evidence was collected. QRnotes has the time stamps, the investigator , and any pictures or text associated with the collected evidence.

As evidence moves thru the chain, every new party scans the QRnote and a record is kept of the entire evidence chain.

Reports are simple to create , as are other data searches.

Results : Evidence is collected in a method that is very hard to corrupt, intentionally or unintentionally. An unlimited number of tags may be attached to the case and linked to each other. Reports are easily generated, and the system is affordable on any budget.




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Home documentation and property tags & facebook

Case 1 : Problem : Many devices and processes around the home are not know by all family members and if the process is not repeated/practiced regularly the knowledge is lost. Typical examples recipes, microwave times, how to light the fireplace, the best way to pack an item, how to use a device, etc

Solution : QRnotes labels are placed on or around equipment. A family member then scans the QRnote label and begins entering operational information. IN some cases, such as the microwave times, multiple entries may be added. When a family member later wants to use the device , they scan the QRnote and all the entrees appear. If needed the famly member uses the search function to find the data they need.

Results :The information about the day to day running's of a house, its devices, and processes is easily documented and readily available to ALL members of the household.

The household is safer and more efficient.


Case 2 : Problem : Individuals have a large amount of personal property that is either "mobile" or "semi-mobile" that often ends up in a place that is not where it is suppose to be or where differnt parties claim ownership of it.

Solution : Property owners print a number of waterproof QR labels for under a penny a piece. Each piece of equipment receives a tag and is scanned into QRnotes along with contact info. For valuable items, a picture is taken of the serial number as well. In some cases a facebook link was put into QRnotes

Later if the item is found - a QR scan provides contact info, and if ownership is disputed the QR scan settles that as well.

If the item is lost and a picture was taken of it the QRnote can be looked up and the serial number reported.

Results :"Free-ish" property tags can now be placed on anything and with no need for pre-planning necessary.