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20th February 2015

QR Codes for Headstones!

A Kent-based entrepreneur has thought up an ingenious way to give loved ones digital memories and tributes of you beyond the grave, by putting QR codes on headstones.

Headstones will be equipped to relive favourite songs and videos as well as images and even family trees.

Wendy Nash, from Tonbridge, has launched a new service which equips gravestones with QR (quick response) codes so that mourners can reminisce over videos, photos, music or even a family tree. Aspetosis (an Austrian bereavement company) worked with a stonemason to do something similar. QR codes can be sandblasted onto a gravestone and the picture below shows a QR code on a gravestone in Vienna.

QR codes are unique black and white grids which can be scanned by most smartphone devices which are often used by businesses to give more details about a product, competitions, or their company. This time, however, QR codes will be used by the relatives who’ll scan the square and then be directed to a website which shows the precious memories.

‘The idea struck me because I have always had a fascination with headstones and eventually I thought to myself ‘is that it? Am I just going to be a name on granite?’ said Nash, who is launching the service through her memorial firm, Hyphenalia. ‘Most of the time that’s all we get, along with a message that doesn’t tell people much about us at all. It’s such a shame and a wasted opportunity.

‘Imagine if someone in your ancestry had achieved something great, but you know nothing about it. It’s something I would want to know and be very proud of. I think it’s quite an original idea and if someone needs help creating a memorial, I can help them.’

This idea could end up with people wondering around graveyards, scanning many QR codes, seeing other people’s personal memories and information. Many people have said that they wouldn’t want everyone to be able to see these memories and would feel invaded if anyone had the chance to look.

Perhaps the gravestones should be equipped with Bluetooth , which will only allow specific devices to connect with the headstone to scan and view the information. All modern technology devices are equipped with Bluetooth and this privacy could lead to more people taking up the opportunity to see the memories and tributes of to loved ones.

The QR codes for gravestones are weatherproof and can be created not just for the newly deceased but for those who passed decades or centuries ago.

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Mrs Jean Fuller, Kent

"I am thrilled that my parents are being commemorated in such a modern way and that my Great Grandchildren and their own children will be able to learn about their forebears."

Ms F Roche', Sussex

"Thrilled at the prospect of working with you both. I know my memories are in great hands!"

Mr A Wood, Cambridgeshire

"Its a wonderful idea and I am thrilled to be able to tell my story for my family and future family. Hyphenalia has been brilliant and has created something wonderful and very special."

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