Archive for August, 2011

Linda Hall Library Fellowships

The Linda Hall Library in Kansas City, MO, is pleased to announce that resident fellowships for 2012 are now available.  Though the Library is open to anyone who wishes to use the collections, fellowships up to $3,000 per month will assist scholars to finance a research visit.

Resident fellowships are offered for the duration of 1 to 9 months in support of research projects in science, engineering, and technology; in the history of science, engineering, and technology; or in interdisciplinary topics that link science or technology to the broader culture.  Applications from U.S. and international scholars are welcome.

Recipients of fellowships are expected to work full time on their research projects while at the Library, to engage with other resident scholars, and to offer a presentation on their work to the general public.

Eligibility

Doctorate-seeking scholars, post-doctorate scholars, and independent scholars who can demonstrate similar professional or academic experience are eligible to apply.

Application Information:

The application deadline for 2012 fellowships is January 3, 2012.  Recipients will be notified in early spring 2012.  Please see the Linda Hall Library Fellowships webpage for more information and application instructions:  http://www.lindahall.org/fellowships/index.shtml.

For further information, you may also contact:

Donna Swischer
Linda Hall Library
5109 Cherry Street
Kansas City, MO 64110
816-9268718
fellowships@lindahall.org

Exoskeletal Legs

Students At UC Berkeley Build Exoskeletal Legs That Allow Paraplegic To Walk.

Popular Science (8/31, Vlahos) reports that student engineers at University Of California At Berkeley’s Robotics and Human Engineering Laboratory “built a machine that” allowed a paraplegic student “to stand up and walk across the commencement stage” in May. Until now, the exoskeletons developed in Berkeley’s Robotics and Human Engineering Laboratory “have been elaborately engineered test pieces.” For the current project, director Homayoon “Kazerooni challenged the students to invent the Honda of exoskeletons, a bare-bones device that would cost $15,000 or less, not $100,000 or more.” Popular Science reports, “With the goal of developing an exoskeleton that costs close to what a powered wheelchair does, the students were forced to adopt a minimalist approach.” Currently, they are “working on a new exoskeleton, one that is even more streamlined and affordable than the” model used in May.

Reposted from the 8/31/11 issue of First Bell.

Rice Hall Opens

Technology that could transform life as we know it and improve the human condition – that’s the vision behind the University of Virginia School of Engineering and Applied Science’s new Rice Hall Information Technology Engineering Building. The building will open at the beginning of the fall semester for classes.

The state-of-the-art space will allow faculty and students to conduct research and learn in such areas as high-performance computing, computer visualization, computer security, energy conservation, wireless communications, telemedicine, virtual reality, distributed multimedia and distance learning.

As the new home for the Department of Computer Science and the Computer Engineering Program, Rice Hall will also feature unique space for lab work, lectures and studying.

“This building is a huge step forward for the Engineering School,” said Dean James H. Aylor at Rice Hall’s groundbreaking in April 2009. “With labs and study areas designed for collaborative research, and facilities to enhance our distance-education programs, this building will benefit the Engineering School, the University and citizens of the commonwealth for years to come.”

The creation of Rice Hall was made possible by a lead gift of $10 million from Paul and Gina Rice, through the Rice Family Foundation.

On the Rice Hall website, Paul Rice, a 1975 electrical engineering alumnus, wrote: “The real promise of what will happen here is the 21st-century extension of the Academical Village and what will be made possible by the technologies that are used, developed and explored in these places. The village won’t simply exist then in these buildings or on this campus, but across the state, across the nation and globe. We have only really begun to understand the way in which these technologies can enhance human performance and accomplishment and how they can improve the human condition.”

Additional funding for the $65.5 million Rice Hall project came from U.Va., the state and from other U.Va. alumni and friends.

The building was designed by Bohlin Cynwinski Jackson and is being constructed by W.M. Jordan Company.

Located at the corner of Whitehead and Stadium roads behind Olsson Hall, Rice Hall consists of six stories covering 100,000 square feet. It is designed to be Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design-certified, commonly known as LEED. It also will be at the forefront of air and power technology, noted senior project manager Craig Hilten of Facilities Management.

Rice Hall’s “chilled beams” use water instead of air to remove heat from rooms – a new technology for University facilities. With sophisticated technologies for heating, cooling and lighting, and including energy recovery systems, Rice Hall also will function as a living laboratory on energy use.

When it opens, students and faculty going about their daily routines in the building will help researchers learn how to optimize the latest energy technologies for large buildings. The building’s instrumentation systems will collect data that will allow managers to optimize its energy consumption. The research also could inform behaviors, such as closing doors or powering down equipment to help reduce energy consumption.

Both undergraduate and graduate students will benefit from specialized lab spaces on all six floors. The largest is the Design Laboratory, located on the first floor, where Introduction to Engineering classes will be taught. With folding doors, it opens and connects to the courtyard, providing space for lab work that must be completed outside.

Also, space in the basement provides the appropriate environment for lab procedures that require specialized lighting. They include the Light Measurement Laboratory and the Visualization Lab.  The floors, ceilings and walls are black, reducing stray light and enhancing image presentation.

Equipped with enhanced audio and video capabilities, Rice Hall also supports the Engineering School’s distance-learning initiatives and teleconferencing – especially benefitting the PRODUCED in Virginia engineering program, in which students earn a four-year engineering degree from U.Va. while attending local community colleges.

Other features of Rice Hall include a 150-seat lecture hall, a cyber cafe, an Einstein’s Bagels eatery and a lobby – all located on the first floor.

Rice Hall will be formally dedicated Nov. 18.

=============================

Reposted from the Aug. 8, 2011 issue of UVa Today.  By Julia Wang.

Tips on Publishing Your Research

Publishing Your Research 101 Video Series

The effective communication of scientific research is vital both to the scientific community and to a scientist’s career. ACS Publications (American Chemical Society) has launched the Publishing Your Research 101 video series to assist authors and reviewers in understanding and improving their experience with the processes of writing, submitting, editing, and reviewing manuscripts.

Who should listen? If you are writing your first research publication, then this series is definitely for you. If you have submitted articles in the past, but would like to improve your skills, then you would benefit from following this series. If you would like to know more about the scholarly communication process, then you will surely find some of these episodes to be of interest. If you are a faculty member or librarian, and are looking for ways to help your students become authors and reviewers, then this series will offer some useful material to build on.

Videos will be released monthly discussing topics such as selecting a journal for submission, writing a good cover letter, suggesting reviewers, responding to reviewer comments and manuscript rejections, tips for non-native English speakers, and more.

You can view the series at the ACS web site http://pubs.acs.org/page/publish-research/index.html

Libra – The New Digital Repository for UVa

The following article is reposted from the August 1, 2011 issue of UVa Today.

New Online Service Preserves, Promotes Digital Faculty Scholarship

July 29, 2011 — The University of Virginia Library has developed a new service to preserve faculty scholarly work and make it easily accessible online.

Libra, a new digital repository, is designed to archive U.Va. faculty articles and scholarship from any discipline in a searchable database, said Martha Sites, deputy university librarian. The service will also host student theses and dissertations, as well as research data sets.

“It provides a way for scholars to ensure the long-term durability of the scholarship they produce,” Sites said. “That’s the overarching goal.”

Digital technology makes it easier to disseminate scholarly work, but it has also created unforeseen preservation problems, she said. Even if a journal or publisher posts an important scholarly article online, there’s no guarantee it will stay there for the long run. And if an article was born in a digital format – meaning  no print version exists – it could potentially be lost forever if a server crashes or the publication folds, Sites said.

“It is a problem in the digital realm that doesn’t exist in the same way in the print realm, in that the best ways to manage digital content over time and through changes in technology are not yet well understood,” she said.

Libra will provide a stable, long-term home for U.Va. scholarship that isn’t tied to a commercial endeavor, said James Hilton, vice president and chief information officer. More and more institutions are heading down similar paths, he said.

“It’s completely appropriate for academic research libraries to be developing these tools and providing these solutions, because they are the only ones charged with the mission of preserving the scholarly record forever,” Hilton said.

When a library buys a physical book, it has the right to loan that book out and preserve it indefinitely, Hilton said. But when it obtains an electronic item, such as a digital copy of a scholarly article, the library only has a license, which – unless the contract says otherwise – doesn’t include the right to preserve it.

“What I think is beautiful about Libra is that it places control in the hands of scholars,” Hilton said.

University faculty members who use Libra are responsible for securing publishing rights to their work and uploading it. Instructions are available on the site.

School of Medicine neurology professor Ivan Login, the first faculty member to upload his work to Libra, said the service could become a powerful tool for scholars who need free access to published research.

“Part of the value of Libra is that it gives faculty members a place to put their papers where the world can get at them without having to pay,” Login said. “The repository allows these articles to be available, if you know where to look for them.”

Sites said Libra was developed in conjunction with Faculty Senate efforts to increase access to scholarly works. Last year, the senate approved a policy designed to encourage scholars to retain rights to publish their research findings online a year after the articles are published in academic journals.

Law professor Edmund Kitch, who served on the Faculty Senate’s Task Force on Scholarly Publication and Authors’ Rights, said many publishers have been cooperative with that process. In some cases, the authors already own publication rights for important pieces of scholarship, he said.

In addition, uploading articles to Libra assures worldwide distribution of work that could otherwise be hard to find, he said.

“It’s a reality that many important scholarly journals are very expensive and have very limited distribution,” Kitch said. “There are millions of people who have no way of getting at the scholarly literature at the present time. If you have a piece of scholarship on Libra, it can be accessed by anyone with an Internet connection throughout the world.”

The library partnered with Information Technology Services to create the site’s infrastructure, and library staff is currently working to make Libra materials searchable through Virgo, the library’s primary search portal. Beta testing for the inclusion of data sets, dissertations and graduate theses should begin in coming months, Sites said.

In the future, online repositories such as Libra could be an important step toward larger digital scholarship repositories that span many institutions, Hilton said.

“In my view, digital preservation efforts are going to increasingly play a role in the life of premier research libraries,” he said.

— By Rob Seal

Contact:

Rob Seal
U.Va. Media Relations
434-243-3492
rseal@virginia.edu

Knovel Database and Earthquake Engineering

In the wake of yesterday’s 5.8 magnitude earthquake here in central Virginia, you might find these titles from the Knovel database of interest.  What is Knovel?  Knovel is a web-based application integrating technical information with analytical and search tools to drive innovation and deliver answers in many engineering disciplines.  It provides the full text to a variety of texts and reference books useful to all engineers.  Give Knovel a try!

Geotechnical Earthquake Engineering Handbook by R. W. Day

Earthquake Engineering – Application to Design by Charles K. Erdey

Hint:  When searching Knovel, you may want to limit your search to just items that UVa subscribes to.  Check the “My Subscription” link near the upper right corner of the Knovel screen.  Readers at schools other than UVa may have different subscribed content – or no access, if your school doesn’t subscribe to Knovel.  Check with your local librarian, if you have questions.

 

New Graduate Student Reading Room

Welcome to the new  Alderman Library Graduate Student Reading  Room  which officially opened on Monday, August 22nd!   The Grad Reading Room occupies the  former Interlibrary Loan office on the 3rd floor between the 3Old Stacks and the 3East Reading Room (Maps/Microforms).

The space contains two  4-seat study tables, three individual study tables, a number of comfortable chairs, and laptop tables.  Shelves along the walls will be assigned to interested grad students  and lockers are available for short term storage needs.   Contact Warner Granade (granade@virginia.edu) if you are interested in shelf space.   Locker keys will circulate from the service desk in the  3rd Floor Central Reading Room.

The Graduate Student Conference Room (Room 310)  is located at the back of the Grad Reading Room.  The Grad Conference Room will be reserved for Library use until 1pm.  After 1pm and on weekends it is available for reservation by graduate students only.   Small study groups or presentations, single office hours, and other meetings are welcome to reserve this space.   We cannot accept long-term or multiple bookings.  The Grad Conference Room can be entered via the Grad Student Reading Room or the 3New Stacks.  For larger meetings  please ask attendees to enter via the 3New Stacks entrance.

For   more information on the room and to reserve the Grad Conference Room please see the Graduate Student  Reading Room guide.  This space is for graduate students and their guests only.   All grad students are welcome, regardless of school or college.   Signs on the doors – from the 3East Reading Room and the 3Old Stacks –  will indicate that the room is reserved for graduate student use.   This is your space in Alderman Library.  Please use and enjoy it!


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