In 1948, Bernard, a graduate student at the Institute of Technology at Drexel University in Philadelphia, Silver Bernard, accidentally overheard the president of a local retail chain asking the dean to develop a system that automatically reads information about a product while controlling it. Taking his friend Woodland as a partner, the guy decided to implement this idea. Morse code prompted the solution to the problem. But instead of dots and dashes, it was decided to use thick and thin stripes. To read the touches, the optical soundtrack used to record sound in movies was used. On October 20, 1949, Woodland and Silver applied for an invention and received US patent No. 2 612 994 for the world's first barcoding system.
In 1951, Woodland and Silver tried to get IBM interested in developing their system. But IBM refused, considering the idea too expensive to implement.
In 1952 Woodland and Silver sold the patent to Philco (hereinafter known as the Helios Electric Company). In the same year, Filko resold the patent to RCA. But only in the spring of 1971, at one of the summits of major trade figures, the RCA company demonstrated a fully functional system for applying and reading a circular barcode using a scanning laser installation.
The first item to be barcoded was Wrigley's chewing gum. It was sold on June 26, 1974 at 8:01 am and is in the Smithsonian Museum.
Now there are more than 50 bar coding systems. Four of them are most actively used - Code 39 (Code 39) of low, medium and high density, code "2 of 5", Codabar code and EAN / UPC.
By themselves, the EAN-13 and UPC encodings do not contain three sixes, they contain three separating characters, visually similar to the code designation of the number 6 according to the general barcode description of the E.A.N-13 / U.P.C.-A standard
Some designers manage to create whole pictures from barcodes without degrading its properties. This trend in packaging design has received the name "Barcode art". The impetus for the socialization of barcodes happened thanks to the Japanese company D-Barcode. This company was the first to introduce its share of creativity in the barcode in such a way that their creativity does not interfere with scanners reading the code, and allows people to please the eye.
Microsoft has developed the Microsoft Tag standard, in which data is encoded with colored areas on a barcode.
Modern smartphones usually have a program that allows you to scan different types of barcodes through a camera - this allows you to quickly identify an object. Thanks to this, the mass distribution of matrix QR codes began, in which product descriptions, contact information or even a link to a website are often encoded.
Google is actively promoting QR codes. Recently, the goo.gl short link service provides the ability to turn any link into a QR code. All you need to do is add ".qr" at the end of the link.