By now, you have probably noticed these funny looking boxes on everything from cereal to restaurant menus. You have also probably wondered what the heck they are and if they matter to you. Well, these black and white squares are actually called QR codes, a type of 2D barcode meant to be read by smartphones. Originally created by a Toyota subsidiary in Japan to track automotive parts, these black and white boxes are now being used to pass along text, web addresses and all sorts of information to smartphones. Companies are using these codes to direct customers to everything from sweepstakes entry forms to job applications. Get scanning today with one of the many smartphone apps that enable you to scan and read QR codes — like NeoReader & BeeTagg Reader (just to name a few).