A rendering of the Technology Sandbox. (Image courtesy of NCSU Libraries)
D.H. Hill Library is already home to a playground of sorts with Xboxes and Wiis in the Learning Commons. Now, it’ll add what it’s calling a Technology Sandbox. Thanks to a $100,000 grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the library will open a 1,700 square-foot technology center this fall that’ll feature two Microsft Surface tables and an 8-foot-by-3-foot touch-screen display wall. Check out the video below to see the capabilities of the display wall developed by Perceptive Pixel:
David Hiscoe, NCSU Libraries’ director of communication strategies, told Library Journal:
The technology center will facilitate research for NCSU students and faculty. NCSU’s College of Natural Resources, for example, will pursue a research project in partnership with the Library of Congress, involving mashing up state and local data with geographic images to help guide government policy and research. . . .
Engineering, veterinary medicine, and design students . . . may use the screens to visualize blueprints or 3D models. One existing app allows forestry students to place a piece of wood on a tabletop screen, triggering images of the wood’s microscopic components.
According to a story on NCSU Libraries’ website, the Technology Sandbox will also serve as a test bed and showcase for technologies that will be available when the new James B. Hunt Jr. Library opens on Centennial Campus in 2012.
Last year we mentioned that GoPack.com’s Tim Peeler ’87 was spending his summer going through the basement in Reynolds Coliseum, which is filled with thousands of uncatalogued photos, trophies, news clippings, film and paperwork related to NC State’s athletics history. This summer? Same thing. NBC-17 caught up with him this week for a story:
How would I illustrate abstract ideas about batteries not so easily filmed? I thought about Bill Nye The Science Guy and all those great Radio Lab shows. Both of those programs manage to turn complex science into engaging entertainment. Knowing that we didn’t have a budget for graphics I found some sidewalk chalk and remembered that any video project worth doing will always be a time-intensive affair — having fun and learning something about doing it better next time is all the reason you need.
We’ve got an update on an alumna we profiled in NC State’s Winter 2008 issue. At the time of the piece in the magazine, Esmeralda Luna-Ramos ’09 was a chemical engineering student and a recent naturalized U.S. citizen who had led a dozen NC State students who were part of the Caldwell Fellows, a scholarship program founded by the Alumni Association, to her hometown, Puebla, Mexico. And today? Luna-Ramos works in engineering and construction plant design at Eastman Chemical, and she’s the face of the company’s new ad (featured left).
After the jump is the introduction and the Q&A for the magazine piece we published on Luna-Ramos in 2008:
Two NC State alumni who initially made a name for themselves on the playing fields have died. Dennis Byrd ’69, a three-time All-ACC football player who’s the only defensive player to have his jersey retired at NC State, died Thursday after having a heart attack during a back surgery. And Kaye Young Cowher ’78, who played basketball at NC State under Kay Yow and was the wife of former Pittsburgh Steelers coach Bill Cowher’79, died of skin cancer on Friday.
After the jump we’ve got write-ups and photos of both Byrd and Cowher.
A couple of months ago we posteda video of a talk Mike deGruy ’75 of Santa Barbara, Calif., who has been called “one of the world’s greatest underwater cameramen,” gave during a TED conference in April that brought together ocean experts. Since then, deGruy has returned to his hometown — Mobile, Alabama — to see the impact of the Gulf oil spill, and he plans to return in a couple of weeks.
He spoke withNC State magazine this week about his first trip to the Gulf and what he learned. “The first trip was, in a nutshell, a giant research trip for three weeks,” says deGruy, who owns the Film Crew, which makes productions for the likes of PBS, National Geographic, and the Discovery Channel. On his second trip to the Gulf, he plans to film and capture what’s happening under water and to document “the story of the scientists and what they are up to.”
In his interview with us, he provides a fascinating description of diving near oil and explains why the trip was a “real enlightening experience.” After the jump, you’ll also find a first-person account of the time that a shark nearly killed him, which appeared in a 1992 issue of NC State magazine. We’ll talk with deGruy again after he returns from his second trip to the Gulf. If there are any questions you’d like for us to ask him, leave a comment.
Why did you go to the Gulf Coast?
I grew up in Mobile, Alabama, and a lot of my childhood friends and family are either impacted by or are involved in this oil mess down there. I spent a lot of time as a kid in the rivers and the Mobile Bay and the Deltas and the Gulf of Mexico. That’s actually where I learned to scuba dive. There’s a warm spot in my heart for that area and for the people in that area. I wanted to go down there and see what I could do to help tell some of the stories and find out what was going on.
What were the stories you found there?
It’s an interesting answer to that question.
They hunt, but always eat what they kill. They work within the system, and they’re not afraid to go to court. They punch above their weight in government circles, operating on a budget smaller than your average lobbyist’s bar tab. And despite Florida’s best efforts to drain, pave, and overpopulate itself to death, they are hell-bent on saving it.
The Florida Wildlife Federation is the most effective environmental outfit in the South, maybe in the country. Over the past decade, this eclectic posse of deer hunters and bunny-huggers, backyard Darwins and bird-watchers, dedicated anglers and nouveau Thoreauvians, has become a force to be reckoned with. “We’re agile and we’re lean,” says Manley Kearns Fuller III, president of FWF. “If you’re not selective with what you emphasize, you can get bogged down. You need a plan, win or lose. When you get whipped, you’ve got to have a masterful retreat, like Robert E. Lee after Gettysburg.”
UNC system President Erskine Bowles has signed off on tuition increases for the coming academic year, an attempt to mitigate budget cuts recently imposed by the General Assembly.
What it means: Students at UNC-Chapel Hill and N.C. State University will pay $750 more in tuition in 2010-11, while N.C. Central University students will pay an additional $435.
In a letter to NC State faculty and staff today, Chancellor Randy Woodson wrote that, at NC State, the $750 increase is in addition to a previously approved increase of $150 for in-state undergraduate students and $200 for both graduate and out-of-state undergraduate students:
The total tuition increase for 2010-11 will be $900 for in-state undergraduates and $950 for all other students. . . .
In an ideal world, we would have other options. But the simple truth is that after another deep budget reduction, tuition is the only way to hold off another round of eliminating course sections and classroom seats. With fewer seats and class sections, your time to graduation would slow down. Many students already have felt the effects of last year’s budget reduction and have shared their frustrations with me.
Bill Friday '41 in 1941. (Photo courtesy of Special Collections, NCSU Libraries)
The Alumni Association wishes William “Bill” Friday ’41 a Happy Birthday! President emeritus of the UNC System and host of UNC-TV’s North Carolina People, Friday turns 90 years old today. He’s pictured above in a photo for the spring fashion issue of Technician in 1941. The public is invited to attend a celebration honoring Friday today from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the Carolina Club in Chapel Hill. (Details here.)
If you were looking for a map of North Carolina so complete that it revealed not just the course of its rivers or the height of its mountains, but also the character and soul of the place, you might consult Bill Friday’s face.
It’s a familiar face, framed by the same style of haircut and eyeglasses that Friday wore 46 years ago, when he became the youngest president of the UNC System. It’s a face that has been invited into living rooms across the state for more than 30 years as host of the television program North Carolina People. And it’s a face that has witnessed every corner of the state and every transformation that has shaped North Carolina in the last half century, a face so much a part of the times that many have come to regard it almost as public property.
Read our entire profile of Friday here, and find three facts about him after the jump:
(Illustration courtesy of Guild of National Science Illustrators)
In a post over at the Sci-Art blog, which lives on NPR’s “Science Friday” website, producer Katherine Wells asks you to think back to your elementary school days. Remember the science books? Remember those drawings that helped illustrate science concepts? It turns out there are a ton of folks who specialize in science illustrations; and in 1968, a group of them who worked at the Smithsonian Institution founded the Guild of Natural Science Illustrators. What does this have to do with NC State?
The works of members of the Guild of Natural Science Illustrators are on display in NCSU Libraries’ Special Collection Exhibit Gallery from now through the first week of August. If you’re on or near campus, head out to D.H. Hill Library to check out the exhibit, “The Art in Science.” (Details here.) If you can’t make it this way, view some of the illustrations in the slideshow below: