What do most teenagers prefer doing on a Saturday? They’d either like to go out with friends or lie on their comfy couch and watch Netflix. This is not what 17-year old boy scout, Cameron Killian did for the past one year.
Killian helped his town’s authorities install QR Codes across the town. This was to help its residents learn about their town’s history.
Killian is a resident of the town North Attleboro in Massachusetts, United States. The town’s Old Town Historic District made a place in the National Register of Historic Place in 1991.
North Attleboro QR Code
A walk around the town one day made Killian realize what his town was missing. Though surrounded by significant sites, the teenager had no clue what they meant. The residents of North Attleboro had little access to information on the town’s historical districts.
That’s when the teenager decided to something about it. The challenge was that most of the town’s history was stored in hard copies and stacked in filing cabinets. This made it hard for people to access the information.
“North Attleboro is a very old town, with several historical sites – but the only way to get more information was to head to the historical commission’s archives. That probably deterred people from looking for more information.” – Cameron Killian
With the permission of the authorities, Killian and a group of his friends set about digitization some of the town’s archives. Using the OCR (Optical Character Recognition) software, the group converted the hard copies to PDF files.
The journey of converting hard copies to soft copies reportedly wasn’t a piece of cake. The group had to re-work on the files manually to rectify the errors made by the software.
Killian and his team have set up QR Codes on five out of the ten boards marking the historic district’s entrance. Scanning the QR Code will lead to a webpage where one can read more about the location on their smartphone.
“Now they (residents) have a way to learn about the history of the town at their fingertips.” -Cameron Killian
The teenager’s idea has given North Attleboro’s history a digital spin.
What do you think of Killian’s idea? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.