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Among the many changes brought about by the pandemic is the widespread use of QR codes: graphic representations of digital data that can be scanned by a smartphone or other device.

QR codes have a wide range of uses that help people avoid contact with objects and close interactions with other people, including restaurant menus, email list sign-ups, car and home sales information, and checking in and out of medical and professional appointments.

Scott Ruoti

Scott Ruoti, an associate professor of computer science in the University of Tennessee, Knoxville’s Tickle College of Engineering, explained for The Conversation what makes the two-dimensional black-and-white patterns versatile—and sometimes harmful. Read the full article on The Conversation.

UT is a member of The Conversation, an independent source for news articles and informed analysis written by the academic community and edited by journalists for the general public. Through our partnership, we seek to provide a better understanding of the important work of our faculty.


Lindsey Owen (865-974-6375,