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Archive for the ‘Mobile Devices’ Category

Bring Gaming to Your Science Classroom

Screentshot of Bohr ThruThe use of gaming in the classroom provides a new medium for teachers to introduce or reinforce key concepts in the curriculum. How to incorporate this new medium seems to have taken online webinars for teachers by storm. Yet are there enough online games that both engage students and provide a real opportunity to learn? Over the summer, the NLM had the opportunity to work with a high school teacher to create two pilot iOS game apps. This was their first attempt to map a gaming app to curriculum objectives taught in high school science. Both games include attractive game design and interactive gameplay, and offer teachers the opportunity to “pause” the game at various times for “teachable moments.” Your students will love taking a break from whiteboards and lectures to try their hand at these fun yet educational games. In addition to these two games, a third game created for the K-12 community involves the reinforcement of concepts that relate to greenhouse gas reduction, the use of renewable energies, and the value of green product purchases.

Bohr Thru: A trip Through the First 18 Elements
In this game, students become familiar with the number of protons, neutrons, and electrons necessary to build each of the first 18 elements. With the help of “Atom,” the game’s main character, students learn fun and interesting facts about the chemical elements. To reinforce content during game play, students can earn “power-ups” when they successfully add electrons to complete Bohr Models for an element.

Base Chase: “A” is to “T” as “G” is to “C”
The basic goal of this game is to reinforce matching bases and the importance these pairs play in the development of a species DNA. The game uses a jumping mechanic to collect different animals found within the African Savanna. After a player has matched enough DNA the animal appears along with “DeeNA,” a whimsical DNA strand character that delivers important information concerning DNA.

Run4Green: Help to Keep our Environment Clean
In this Mario style game, our fun Earthly character tries to collect points (gold coins) in order to purchase green products to help save our environment. Along the way, the character tries to avoid products that produce greenhouse gases and identify those that can help to reduce our carbon footprint.

Bohr Thru, Base Chase, and Run4Green require iOS 7.0 or later, are compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch, and are freely available for download.

Radiation Emergency Medical Management (REMM) Website Redesign and Content Update!

Redesigned REMM websiteRadiation Emergency Medical Management (REMM) has released its first major redesign since its 2007 launch. The redesign includes a more modern banner, a new color palette and font style, and a new navigation system. There are now six content groups on the new home page. One of the most popular features, the Multimedia Library in carousel form, remains on the home page, with seven categories of multimedia assets. The redesigned site now includes behavioral health resources and material for additional stakeholders, including first responders, senior health care leaders, veterinarians and public information officers. Since the last major content update in November 2014, significant content updates have been added to the web site including:

Users who have previously bookmarked REMM pages of interest should know that all prior URLs have been retained, so the bookmarks will still work. Users who have visited REMM pages before may need to refresh (reload) the web page to see the new design. Otherwise, only the old pages cached in your browser will display. The majority of the information from the website can be downloaded for use during an emergency if the internet is not accessible. A smartphone app containing REMM information, called Mobile REMM, also is available for the Apple and Android platforms.

NN/LM Middle Atlantic Region Webinar Offerings in October & November!

The Regional Office of the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, Middle Atlantic Region, is offering several webinars during the months of October and November. All sessions offer MLA continuing education credit.

  1. Introduction to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center Library (Boost Box)
    Tuesday, October 13, 9:00 – 10:00 AM PDT
    Description: This presentation will introduce librarians and others to the extensive, unique collections of the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSRVC) Library. Providing resources to researchers, advocates, medical professionals, law enforcement, allied organizations, and the public since 2000, the NSVRC Library may be considered the largest collection of materials on sexual violence and prevention in the world, currently housing a collection of over 35,000 unique titles. Learn how NSVRC can provide valuable resources and training materials for the medical profession, public health practitioners, and academic institutions nationwide. No registration is required.
  2. HIV/AIDS Resources
    Wedneday, October 14, 9:00 – 10:00 AM PDT
    Description: AIDSinfo offers access to the latest, federally approved HIV/AIDS medical practice guidelines, HIV treatment and prevention clinical trials, and other research information for health care providers, researchers, people affected by HIV/AIDS, and the general public. AIDSource was developed by NLM to ensure that those seeking information about HIV/AIDS have a source of quality reviewed current content, and provides access to HIV/AIDS-related information both within and outside of the federal government. The presentation will cover the many features of AIDSinfo and AIDSource, including the portfolio of AIDSinfo mobile apps. No registration is required.
  3. Wearable Technology: If the Tech Fits, Wear It
    Wednesday, October 28, 8:00 – 9:00 AM PDT
    Description: “Wearable technology” and “wearable devices” are phrases that describe electronics and computers that are integrated into clothing and other accessories that can be worn comfortably on the body. Examples of wearable devices include glasses, watches, headbands, and jewelry. While these technologies show great influence in fashion and entertainment, they have the largest impact in the areas of health, medicine, and fitness. Librarians are also exploring wearable technology’s potential for enhancing services and expanding outreach to their organizations. No registration is required.
  4. Building Collections and Connections for LGBT Health Awareness: Improving the Health, Safety, and Well-Being of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Persons
    Tuesday, November 10, 12:00 – 1:30 PM PST
    Description: NN/LM MAR Outreach Coordinator Kate Flewelling will teach this new course. As a result of the session, participants will develop a better understanding of the health information needs of the LGBT community; have an increased awareness of the importance of LGBT education for health care providers and the role of implicit bias in healthcare; discover resources that can be utilized in reference interactions; be able to identify electronic, print, and other resources for building a LGBT collection; and gain ideas for outreach strategies to the LGBT community. Registration is required.

AIDSource: a Redesigned, Mobile-Optimized HIV/AIDS Information Website from the National Library of Medicine

AIDSource screenshotThe National Library of Medicine’s web portal for HIV/AIDS information has been redesigned and given a new name. The new website, AIDSource, offers access to a comprehensive collection of HIV/AIDS-related information resources that are reviewed and selected by expert information specialists and librarians. Visitors to AIDSource will now be able to view the website content on their mobile device. The website is now automatically optimized for display across all device types, including desktop computers, tablets, and smartphones. The new design of the website was constructed by user feedback received through a survey in 2014. In addition to responsive design, the new AIDSource design also includes the following new features:

  • Addition of a slider feature that highlights resources of interest
  • Addition of images for topics
  • Improvements in website navigation, including a menu on all pages of the website that provides access to all topic areas

The mission of AIDSource is to serve as a reliable source for access to HIV/AIDS-related information from federal and non-federal sources. Resources included on the AIDSource website are organized by both topic of interest and audience, and information is available in English and Spanish. NLM welcomes your feedback on the AIDSource website.

Bohr Thru: a Chemistry-Themed Mobile Game from NLM’s Specialized Information Services

Bohr ThruThe Bohr Thru video game, developed by the National Library of Medicine (NLM), is designed to teach the Bohr model of the atom, by using a 3-match game style to collect protons, neutrons, and electrons to create the first 18 elements on the periodic table. The model describes how protons and neutrons form an atom’s nucleus, surrounded by electrons in orbit at different energy levels. Element structures are further reinforced during bonus rounds where players that successfully build Bohr models earn “power-ups” to use in the 3-match game. Atom, the game’s mascot, travels along with you and provides fun and interesting facts about the chemical elements. The game supports entry level chemistry curricula. Short (five-minute), meaningful, in-class game sessions are possible.

Bohr Thru was crafted under the technical lead of SIS computer scientist Ying Sun, working with SIS intern Wendy Sparks and the SIS K-12 team, who partnered with Xin Wu, a graduate student at Worcester Polytechnic Institute majoring in Interactive Media and Game Development. Bohr Thru is freely available for iPhone and iPad devices, and can be downloaded from iTunes.

NIAMS Launches New Spanish-Language Website

NIAMS websiteThe National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Disease (NIAMS), part of the National Institutes of Health, has launched a new Spanish-language website that provides free health information on conditions of the bones, joints, muscles and skin. The site is being launched to coincide with National Hispanic Heritage Month. Increasingly, website traffic to NIAMS’ Spanish-language content represents about 50% of its total visits in a given month. To meet this high demand, the new site features quick and easy navigation tools to help Spanish-speaking individuals identify and locate NIAMS health topics. It also includes landing pages that provide all of the information offered on a given topic in one place. The website also offers:

  • New site features navigation tools to help Spanish-speaking individuals locate NIAMS health topics
  • Improved access to NIAMS’ Spanish-language health information and related federal resources
  • Information on participating in clinical research studies
  • Responsive design that makes the site easier to read on mobile devices

NIAMS is committed to providing health information that is culturally and linguistically appropriate for diverse populations, including underserved racial and ethnic communities. The NIAMS Spanish-language materials complement the institute’s entire suite of health resources that are part of its National Multicultural Outreach Initiative, many of which are also available in Chinese, Korean and Vietnamese.

Updated AIDSinfo HIV/AIDS Glossary and Companion App Now Include Images

AIDSinfo has announced the release of the 8th edition of the AIDSinfo Glossary of HIV/AIDS-Related Terms and a redesign of the corresponding glossary app! This update features the addition of images and infographics highlighting select glossary terms. With definitions for more than 700 HIV/AIDS-related terms in English and Spanish, the glossary—whether online, in print, or as an app—offers a comprehensive guide to the vocabulary of HIV.

The free glossary app, available for iOS and Android devices, has been redesigned with an updated look and feel. The app includes several new features that make it easy to save frequently referenced terms and share favorite terms on Facebook or Twitter or by e-mail or text. The app also includes an audio feature to hear terms correctly pronounced in English and Spanish and a toggle button to switch between English and Spanish terms and definitions.

New Mobile App Connects HIV Providers, Advocates, and People Living with HIV/AIDS to NLM HIV-Related Websites

Logo for Go2NLM Mobile App

HealthHIV, in partnership with the National Library of Medicine (NLM), has announced the launch of the Go2NLM mobile application. Building on its Navigate to Learn More publication, HealthHIV created the Go2NLM app to provide information about and direct access to NLM’s authoritative HIV-related websites to HIV providers, advocates, and people living with HIV/AIDS. The app features dynamic content, including updates about new and highlighted HIV technical assistance and capacity building tools and resources promoted by NLM.

The websites featured on the Go2NLM app are:

The application will soon be available for download from HealthHIV, as well as the Apple and Google app stores. For more information about the Go2NLM project, please contact HealthHIV.

Updates for NLM’s Tox Town City Neighborhood

The National Library of Medicine (NLM) Tox Town City neighborhood now has updated graphics with a new photorealistic look. The City, Town, and Southwest scenes are now in HTML 5. Location and chemical information remains the same, but the new graphics allow users to better identify with real-life city locations. Tox Town can be accessed on a variety of personal electronic devices, including iPads, iPad minis, and tablets. Regardless of where you live, check out the updated Tox Town City neighborhood and learn about potential environmental health risks!

Designing Questionnaires for the Mobile Age

How does your web survey look on a handheld device? The Pew Research Center reported that 27% of respondents to one of its recent surveys answered using a smartphone, and another 8% used a tablet. That means over one-third of participants used handheld devices to answer the questionnaire. The lesson learned is unless you are absolutely sure your respondents will be using a computer, you need to design surveys with mobile devices in mind. As a public opinion polling organization, the Pew Center knows effective practices in survey research. It offers advice on developing questionnaires for handhelds in its article Tips for Creating Web Surveys for Completion on a Mobile Device. The top suggestion is to be sure your survey software is optimized for smartphones and tablets. SurveyMonkey fits this criterion, as do many other popular Web survey applications.

Software alone will not automatically create surveys that are usable on handheld devices. It is also important to follow effective design principles, such as keeping it simple and using short question formats. Avoid matrix-style questions. Keep the length of your survey short. And don’t get fancy with questionnaires which include logos and icons, which take longer to load on smart devices. It is also advisable to pilot test questionnaires on computers, smartphones, and tablets, to be sure to offer a smooth user experience to all of your respondents.