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From Security to Education, the Future is in the Grid Gridmark Inc. IP

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Category: Others

Gridmark offers pen readers and payment systems powered by tiny dots

Gridmark combines invisible dots, infrared pens and recording technology to create an intuitive, flexible system that can be used for everything from financial transactions to language education. It’s all backed by some 300 domestic and international patents registered by company CEO Dr. Kenji Yoshida.

Gridmark Inc. CEO Dr. Kenji Yoshida is the consummate innovator. He holds over 100 patents in Japan and more than 200 overseas, from data processing systems to 3-D display technology. But most of his patents revolve around applications for his dot-pattern data reader system.


Digital notes using the G-Pen; courtesy of Gridmark Inc.

Founded by Dr. Yoshida in 2004, Gridmark offers flexible technology that uses infrared readers and grids of tiny dots to bring up recordings, videos, photos or even personal data, connecting printed material with digital content.

Called Grid Onput, these grids can be produced with regular printers using carbon ink. Carbon ink absorbs infrared light, distinguishing grid points from other ink on the same page. Only 0.05 millimeters in width, these dots are nearly invisible to the naked eye, meaning they won’t disrupt images or text on the page. And unlike competing products that recycle the same codes for multiple projects, a unique Grid Onput grid can be created for every entry.

The grids can also be printed on cloth and plastic, creating a low-cost, high-quality, hard-to-copy method of ensuring traceability and checking for counterfeit goods. Security can be further enhanced through colorless, transparent “stealth ink” that absorbs infrared light – and Dr. Yoshida holds patents surrounding stealth ink reader technology as well.


Talking pens and grid stickers.

Multipurpose Technology

Gridmark offers a variety of products leveraging its grid reader technology. Talking G-Talk and G-Speak pens can be used to play back audio in multiple languages. Already widely used in the educational market, the famed Kumon Institute of Education uses some 120,000 units per year.

The G-Pen BT / WiFi smart pen, on the other hand, is ideal for business use. It allows users to save written material digitally by writing on G-Note paper, which has a dot code pattern that enables writing and drawings to be transmitted digitally. Thanks to an audio recorder, notes can be linked to speech as well, adding further insight.


Diagrams drawn using the G-Pen on G-Note paper can be converted to digital information.

Smartcard Applications

Gridmark is taking the reader concept a step further with a smartcard called G-Card, which uses photocells to interact with smartphone screens. Currently in development, a chip in the card creates a safe, one-time ID and password that connect through Cloud servers to enable online payments. Eliminating the need to reveal private details, Dr. Yoshida envisions it as a secure form of payment, or for internal security systems. The predecessor of this technology, G-Stamp, is a smartphone-enabled catalogue reader, which has already been applied to inventory tracking and online shopping.

With possibilities expanding as technology advances, the potential uses for Gridmark systems are limited only by the imagination.

Based on interview in September 2016


Gridmark Inc. CEO Dr. Kenji Yoshida holds over 300 patents worldwide.


Website: Gridmark Inc.External site: a new window will open.