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By: Chris Tonelli

Rubia Arfeen, a senior in Biological Sciences and a Libraries employee, will be blogging about her experience with the Apple Watch–a technology new to the NCSU Libraries lending pool.

DAYS 7 & 8
I have a new found appreciation for the music app on the watch. When you are a lazy person (like me), DH Hill, Jadavia, Rubia and Jadaviaand leave things to last minute (again me), it is amazing what technology can do for you. The iPhone 6 was sitting across the table, and since I had already sat down and started on my hw, I was not about to get up to turn on my music. Lo and behold–there’s an app for that! I will admit I had to turn the shuffle on manually, but after that the watch did all of the work. When my iTunes started playing U2’s Iris–and I have no idea how that song got on my phone–it was easily skipped by pulling up the shortcut to the music app and replaced with Bad Blood by TS. Overall, for the procrastinating and lazy student, the watch is super helpful.

Also, in my summer class, my professor is super against phones. So when I need to text I can quietly talk into the watch, it’ll write out the text for me and be sent off. I have only done this once and wasn’t caught! So hopefully my professors aren’t reading this.

Lastly, I cannot emphasize how great the camera app is! It does take a minute to get used to, but look at this shot of the library. I also took a pic and (failed) selfie with a fellow coworker.

Okay, that’s all for now!

By: Chris Tonelli

Rubia Arfeen, a senior in Biological Sciences and a Libraries employee, will be blogging about her experience with the Apple Watch–a technology new to the NCSU Libraries lending pool.


DAY 5
Rubia. Not Maria.
I went to lunch with my sisters and a couple of friends, and one of them was not at all impressed with my watch, while the other is thinking about about getting one! He really likes technical gadgets, and he loved the watch. My twin sister is thinking about getting one too. She’s a Nutrition Science major and wants to become a Registered Dietician and really likes the idea behind the activity and workout apps. The activity app reminds the wearer to move about and reach the daily activity goals and actually gives awards when achieved. The watch might be a good way to help somebody who was interested in getting healthy.


DAY 6

Quiet day on the Apple Watch front. The activity app keeps track of how many calories you burn, how many mins of exercise you do, and if you stand every hour in a 12 hour cycle. If you go more than an hour sitting, it’ll suggest you get up or stand and move around. So, I spent most of the day listening to it tell me to stand, because I’ve been watching Netflix and doing homework.  Oh..also, here is proof that Siri thinks I’m my twin sister, Maria. I can change it in the settings, but I might just leave it because I think it really funny. : )

By: Chris Tonelli

Rubia Arfeen, a senior in Biological Sciences and a Libraries employee, will be blogging about her experience with the Apple Watch–a technology new to the NCSU Libraries lending pool.


DAY 3
Okay, so I think I am finally getting a hang of this. I was able to send and receive texts without too much trouble! The watch also saves the last couple of texts in a conversion on the iPhone 6. The handoff feature is also pretty handy. One thing that I noticed is that whenever the watch would send me a notification about getting up and moving around and reaching my activity goals for the day, I would get up and move around. I know we are interested in possible research uses, so maybe the watch could be used for health benefits. That’s all for now, good night!

Maria and Rubia
DAY 4
I linked my email to the iPhone 6, and the fact that I can open my email on the watch is pretty cool and officially my 3rd favorite thing. But when you get a long email, it isn’t practical to read it on the watch, especially if it has attachments.
At that point it’s smarter to switch to your phone or laptop.

I volunteer as a teacher at the Islamic Association of Raleigh’s Sunday school, and my first graders LOVED the camera on the watch and kept asking me if they could play with it! I ended up letting one of my students hold the iPhone 6 while I took a selfie of him from the watch. He basically thought it was the coolest thing ever.

One thing I’ve noticed about the watch is that the iPhone has to be pretty close by if you want to use Siri to search for something. I would say the phone has to be within 20ft. Also, I have no idea how this happened, but the watch keeps calling me Maria. Even technology gets me and my twin sister confused! I don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

Lastly, I noticed that the watch tends to get a little warm after a while, and I just take it off for a few minutes whenever that happens. I don’t normally wear a watch, so I don’t know if this is particular to this watch or if it happens with all watches. Besides that, it’s pretty comfortable and doesn’t cause any friction to my wrist or decrease mobility.

May 11 2015

Apple Watch: Day 2

By: Chris Tonelli

Rubia Arfeen, a senior in Biological Sciences and a Libraries employee, will be blogging about her experience with the Apple Watch–a technology new to the NCSU Libraries lending pool.

I woke up with my Apple Watch buzzing on my wrist, informing me that it was time to get up. I set the alarm by pushing in the small wheel on the side, known as the digital crown, and activated Siri! While Siri does not speak back to me, I ended up using her frequently throughout the day. In particular, when I was using the Maps app on the watch, I had to speak into the watch to give her the address. It did take a couple of tries before she got what I was saying, but the app gave me walking instructions to a building on campus. This would be a really useful app for new students trying to find their way around campus and a way to reach your activity goals for the day! Siri also helped me send text messages, but those took a couple of tries too.

One thing I really liked was the music app. I synced my tunes to the watch app on the iPhone 6, and I was able to use the watch to play music from the phone!

Lastly, I put a passcode on the watch. But this doesn’t seem very practical, as the screen is very small, and it mostly stayed on my wrist for the day. It’s a cool feature, but I ended up disabling it later.

By: Chris Tonelli

Known for its role on NC State’s campus as a technology incubator, the NCSU Libraries lent its first Apple Watch yesterday afternoon to Rubia Arfeen, a senior in Biological Sciences. Much like it has for a range of technologies—from laptops to iPads to Arduinos to 3D scanners—NCSU Libraries is again leading the way.

When asked about the Libraries’ interest in lending Apple Watches, David Woodbury (Associate Head of User Experience) simply explained that “the students asked us to, and it is our goal to respond, in student-time, to their interests and research needs.” Woodbury also pointed out that the students and faculty at NC State are themselves creating the technologies of the future, and giving them access to the latest tools and devices inspires and facilitates their innovations.

Arfeen, who is on the pre-med track, recognized immediately a connection to her field: “I absolutely love the fact that I can check my heart rate at any point in the day. I’m interested in cardiology, and I check my pulse periodically throughout the day anyway, and this made it a lot easier.” But lending such devices is not meant solely for academic use, a fact not lost on Arfeen: “The camera app is my second favorite! You can use the watch to open it, and it’ll transmit what is showing on your phone’s camera! You can use the watch to take pictures!”

“This is an extension of what libraries have always done,” Woodbury noted. “Libraries democratize access to technology, making tools that may otherwise be difficult to afford available to students. We want as many students as possible to experience what these various technologies have to offer, and we love hearing from them about the exciting and creative ways they put these tools to use.”

Arfeen has already provided valuable feedback about the Apple Watch’s intuitive usability: “The face was easy to customize, and Siri works fine, as long as I’m connected to Wi-Fi.” For more about her experience with the Apple Watch, follow her blog posts right here all next week.

Learn more about the NCSU Libraries’ technology lending service here.

Apr 28 2015

Coffee and Donuts!

By: Library Staff

coffee and donuts

Coffee and donuts during final exams 
(Starting the night of April 28th)
D. H. Hill Library and the Hunt Library

Long after the cafes have closed for the night, University Dining will be providing free coffee and the Friends of the Library will be supplying donuts in the lobbies of the D. H. Hill Library and the Hunt Library throughout final examinations (except for Saturday and Sunday mornings).

So put down the books for a few moments, take breath or two, and meet us after midnight to throw off the stress and boost up the energy.

Our thanks go to University Dining and the Friends of the Library.

By: Library Staff

NC State students rely on the Libraries for quiet study space, particularly during final exams. To help ensure that we can meet this need, the NCSU Libraries is continuing changes put in place this summer to reduce disruptions during the critical times around finals.

At the Hunt Library

  • Access during reading days and finals will be limited to NC State students, faculty, and staff, who will need to use their Wolfpack One Cards to enter the Hunt Library security gates, April 25 – May 7.
  • No tours, sightseeing, or events will be allowed between the last day of classes and the completion of final exams.

At the D. H. Hill Library

  • Tours and events will be limited around final exams, April 25 – May 7.
  • The Wolfpack One Card will continue to be required for access after 10 pm.

By: Library Staff

The James B. Hunt Jr. Library received the 2015 Architizer A+ Popular Choice Award for educational libraries in the typology category. Designed in collaboration by the NCSU Libraries, Snøhetta, and Clark Nexsen, the Hunt Library was the only U.S. library named as a finalist.

Finalists were candidates for the Architizer A+ Jury Award, which was selected by a distinguished jury, but public voting determined the Architizer A+ Popular Choice Award. The popular choice award polls were open online at the Architizer A+ Awards website from March 17 to April 3.

The Architizer A+ Awards winners were announced on April 14, 2015 and will be recognized at a gala in New York City in May, where they will receive a complimentary copy of the annual book of all A+ Award winners, published by Phaidon. Now in its third year, the global architectural awards program recognizes excellence and identifies industry leaders for architecture and design worldwide. While entries were received from more than 100 countries, only five entries in each category were named finalists.

To learn more about the Architizer A+ Awards, please visit http://awards.architizer.com/about/awards/.

By: Library Staff

light sculptureThe NCSU Libraries D. H. Hill Library light sculpture will be lit in red in honor of Dr. Behnam Pourdeyhimi winning the 2015 O. Max Gardner Award for his contributions to health and human safety. The event will begin in the evening of Thursday, April 23rd and end Sunday, April 26th. For more information, please visit the following link. https://news.ncsu.edu/2015/04/highest-honor/

By: Library Staff

Anthony Smith was the first prize winner.

The NCSU Libraries announced the winners of its inaugural Code+Art Student Visualization Contest, sponsored by Christie® Digital Systems. The contest enabled students to develop large-scale, data-driven “generative art” for the twenty-foot wide Art Wall and curved iPearl Immersion Theater at the James B. Hunt Jr. Library.

Anthony Smith, a senior in Computer Science with a concentration in Game Development, won first prize for his Fractal Forest visualization. Fractal Forest features an interactive planet that develops different types of trees as guests enter the Hunt Library. Anthony Smith hopes “that people will have a different experience every time they see my work.  Just like nature, it is always changing, so every viewing will be unique.”

The team from WKNC 88.1 FM, NC State’s student-run radio station, won second place with their music visualizer of the WKNC internet radio stream. This team consists of Cameren Dolecheck, Harrison Wideman, Neal Grantham, Dylan Stein, and Colin Keesee.

The WKNC team (Cameren Dolecheck, Harrison Wideman, Neal Grantham, Dylan Stein, and Colin Keesee) were the second prize winners.

Of their visualizer, the team said, “In the wake of many other college radio stations being shut down, we hope to show that [WKNC] brings people together, enough to even make a work of this magnitude. …We hope this piece shows how much more goes on with a radio station other than DJing.”

This contest marks the first open call for students to create and showcase data-driven art for the video walls at the James B. Hunt Jr. Library. Mike Nutt, Director of Visualization Services and creator of the Code+Art program says, “The video walls were installed to create a dialog with library patrons about the world around them. Code+Art re-envisions the role that data plays in a university setting, turning data into part of our library’s aesthetic fabric.”

The winning pieces are on display at the Hunt Library until April 29, 2015. For more information about the exhibit, visit http://www.lib.ncsu.edu/event/christie-codeart-exhibit.