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Animated Codes Made Easy

Tech Info

People ask us all the time how we make these animations, and we're quite proud of the technology behind it; we even filed for and received a U.S. Patent with our designed solution. Below is an overview of the technology we created and why we designed it the way we did. Note below you'll see many references to QR codes, but our solution is applicable to any type of scannable code.


The challenge:

How can we make a library of animations, and have each animation be able to be applied to any unique QR code?

This can be a simple challenge for... simple animations; say a standard QR code painted onto a rotating sign, but other times it can be decidedly complex, especially if you want to do what we want to do, which is to animate each individual tile of any QR code. Also, we want people to customize the colors and add at least one image into the animation. This way everyone can turn their standard QR code into a customized animated QR code that really catches the eyes of passing customers, and also fits the promotion embedded in the QR code into a designed brand.

Now, there is a lot of software out there for creating animations, but none of those apps are really geared towards making the quality animations we want to make. To summarize a tremendous amount of technical detail, the web based animation solutions out there make game quality animations that aren't very secure, and are also exposed to hacking. Instead, we want to make short custom movies that are Motion Picture Quality, and which are 'baked out' in security, and which are quite refined in 'look and feel' to any viewer. We have worked on our enterprise to provide custom animations complete with the full quality of 3d Visual Effects seen in the Film & Television Industry.

Of course, animations of a QR code can be made today... expensively, and when you're done waiting and spending a substantial amount of money to have one, you have.... one animation, for one QR code.

We wanted an engine.


An animation engine.


An engine that could apply any animation from a library of animations to any QR code.

An engine that was a web service so it could be securely accessed by any system from anywhere in the world to generate high quality animated QR codes for any purpose.


So we made one. We started with several industry standard software applications that are used as core tools in the visual effects industry, added our highly unique animation engine and algorithms, then plugged everything into our proprietary digital pipeline. The result is a miniaturized Hollywood and Television 3d animation studio… except that it’s fully automated, and available for use over the web.


There are many interesting points below about the software we created and are continuing to evolve, but what we love most about it is its freedom-based approach to defining and enhancing animations, while still upholding the industry Graphics/Digital Pipeline methods, workflows and standards that have kept the Visual Effects industry’s productivity improving for decades. Basically, there’s nothing Hollywood can do that ACME can’t also do. We just do it in much less time for much less money.

Also: ACME is one of the few teams in the world that knows how to fully automate the world class software used in the VFX industry. Large, heavy, expensive animation authoring programs like Maya, Nuke, Houdini can be automated to some extent, but in the end they are engineered to be used interactively by people to create 3d animations. ACME has the knowledge to make programs like this fully automated. The result: very affordable, world class animations are available to you.


Now, standing up a worldwide-accessible and reliable web service is an eyebrow raising challenge for any team of developers today, and we take the API's reliability seriously.


Regarding internal software development, we constantly:

  • Maintain separate dev, stage/test, and live/production versions of our API to ensure reliable live service stability

  • Follow industry standard DevOps standards for publishing updated versions through each release phase

  • Maintain a robust series of test suites, applied both per release and constant ping aliveness

  • Maintain and backup our proprietary software with industry source code repository systems - we use git (not GitHub) for most everything internal, bitbucket for public code like our Animation Library.

  • Constantly ensure all run time code, data and source is secured with industry standard encryption systems

  • Maintain a small but efficient proprietary build and release system

  • Use SSL certificates to ensure private transmission of customer data.

Regarding external customer facing details, the API:

  • Provides a fully automated remote digital pipeline for animated code creation, as well as standard static codes

  • Supports a wide range of incoming image formats including PSD, GIF, JPEG, PNG, Targa, TIFF, XPM, ICO, SVG.

  • Outputs to industry standard formats of GIF, FBX, MP4, and PNG (via ZIP)

  • Supports low to high resolutions, HD/4K/8K, custom

  • Supports International Unicode content for both embedded messages and uploaded user image files

  • Securely transmits over SSL Certs

  • Is platform and app independent

  • Produces decidedly counterfeit resistant animations

  • Supports large volumes of animation creation

  • Provides for time sensitive creation, enhancing integrity and security

  • Creates animations in seconds for most requests

  • Is customizable to each user or firm

  • Is not limited to QR codes

  • Is published with a 'Test and learn for free' design which makes integration easy for any developer

  • Is a Restful API

  • Is documented

With this engine - or ‘API’ - completed, published, and working with robust testing software verifying it constantly, we started on the next challenge: How do we encourage people to use it?


For this we decided on two different solutions; a retail page and a professional page.


First we made the retail web page - our Animation Library - so anyone in the world could make animations at limited resolutions that would always work. Why limited you ask? We’re sure you’ve heard the expression ‘A picture is worth a thousand words’, which we believe to be true, and also that animations are worth at least ten thousand words more. Though our animation engine is fully automated, the nearly infinite choices even one animation has are simply too much to expect the interested public to interact with. So, we curtail, curate, and limit the choices to enable anyone to quickly get in, create their custom animation, buy, and display it on their screens as soon as possible.


Then we made a private professional web page, one with complete access to all the options we engineered into our system, so we could generate high resolution animations for more clients with more particular needs, file formats, and timing requirements. We don’t share this page with the public, but we use it to create beautiful, high resolution animated QR codes with customized images and branding in very competitive time periods and with very competitive prices.

Web API portal:

Web API portal documentation:

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