In Brooklyn, where I live, it's not unusual to come across cryptic graffiti written in blue. To the artists, hipsters and others familiar with system, the graffiti is meant to mimic the hyperlinks of the Web. It's part of an emerging multimedia tool called Grafedia. If you send a message to the web address in the graffiti, you get back a message that is somehow related to the place the graffiti appeared.
For a better explanation, check out this article by the Associated Press.
I have a sense that Grafedia has potential as a tool to create a new form of journalism -- immersion stories. Imagine a feature article that requires readers to participate physically in retrieving information. Readers could wander through a place related to a story -- the area around the World Trade Center in New York, a state capitol building, a park or a tradeshow. When readers come across Grafedia, they type the address into their cell phones, send a text message, and retrieve more of the story. It would be possible to use Grafedia to point the audience to human sources that they could interview themselves. The messages sent via Grafedia could include videos, background music or narration (similar to a tape-recorded walking tour.) As far as I know, no one has created a story with such interactivity. But I'm willing to predict that someone will soon. The power of linking the multimedia world with the real world is too powerful to ignore.