In today’s world, Information and Communication Technology (ICT) has transformed the relationships between countries, companies and individuals. Telecommunications have taken a giant leap forward since the 19th century, enabling information to reach an ever wider audience through the use of the latest forms of technology. The overlap between these technologies and the computing revolution that has been taking place over recent decades has meant that both communication and information are acquiring greater immediacy, reaching a massive scale and penetrating all corners of the planet. Communication these days is a two-way process in which an individual can both receive and send information, as well as share news, views, knowledge and the like with other individuals in real time. ICT has also revolutionised traditional commercial business by introducing direct online transactions between private individuals and companies.
Correos, as part of this technological culture, is now issuing a stamp dedicated to ICT. And it is doing so in the very best way, by offering information via tools such as the QR code, emoticons and Augmented Reality (AR), using a combination of real images and virtual creations.
A QR code is a two-dimensional matrix of points formed by a series of black squares on a white background, enabling a far greater amount of information to be stored than in traditional bar codes. Special software installed on computers and modern mobile phones allows the code to be read, opening up many more opportunities for use by consumers.
When your device reads the QR code on the stamp, you are invited to download a program enabling you to discover the world of AR. A video shows a practical demonstration of the possibilities offered by AR, plus its many applications.
Another visible element of the stamp is a smiley emoticon, which winks conspiratorially, inviting you to take a stroll between the virtual and the real. Emoticons started to appear when electronic mail went mainstream, using a curious code formed by a few keyboard strokes to express emotional states.
This stamp issue has the distinctive feature of enabling customers, for the very first time, to access information beyond that of the image on the stamp by actively using their mobile phones. Take a closer look!