Some 3D Printing Links

We’re charging ahead with 3D printing. The Duke Multimedia Project Studio (MPS) has 3D printers available, and the upcoming DDI call for proposals will include a section on maker technologies with a focus on 3D printing. Want to know more about 3D printing? You might find these resources useful. If you have a resource about 3D printing you’d like to share with the DDI community, please send it to

Thanks to DDI intern, Eric Boykin, for finding these resources!

“The future of higher education: reshaping universities through 3D printing.“ This blog post is from a company blog, but you might find its description of providing 3D printing services in a university library useful and interesting.

“Exciting Developments in Uses of 3D Printing in Education.” Read about some examples of how 3D printing is being used in high schools and colleges. Note that the article says 3D printers don’t require intensive maintenance. Our experience is that they do require attention to maintenance! But the educational examples are worth reviewing.

“3D printer may offer key to organ creation.” 3D printers are used to print many materials. Read about one effort to print living material that might be used for implants.

“Lab Equipment Made With 3-D Printers Could Cut Costs by 97%.” What happens when you replace commercially available lab equipment with items generated largely with 3-D printing technology? Read this article to find out.

“Open-Source 3D-Printable Optics Equipment.” Read about one example of making 3D printer models (files) available freely.

Photo credit: By Baminnick (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Google Glass In The Class: Wearable Technology Of The Educational Future

by Eric Boykin, DDI student intern, Summer 2014

Many colleges and universities have adopted the BYOD or BYOT (Bring your own device or bring your own technology) policy or method in the classrooms that allots for many students using their own technology to facilitate the learning process also known as the SAMR model. One device I think would be a great asset to education is Google Glass. Google Glass is a wearable technology or wearable computer that has a cube shaped glass prism display just above the right eye that displays information from the Internet or any source that is Bluetooth enabled. With this feature, professors can have their students interact with Google Glass and stream their lectures. Professors can additionally see how their students are responding to the lectures from the student’s point of view in real time. They can assist that student who may be struggling with the material and offer them that one-on-one assistance as needed. The professor will be able to view and track each student’s progress all from his laptop and at the same time see whether the student is paying attention. Professors can also create instructional videos from their perspective. This can reach many students who may need to see the instruction from another point of view as opposed to reading the instructions from a book or lab manual. In assessing their own teaching style, professors can view the student’s Google Glass to see how their teaching methods are seen as a student in their course. What grabbed the student’s attention? Which methodology fostered better learning? This is important and can be the first significant step for educators analyzing their own practice. Of course there will need to be some tweaking and networking of Glasses to achieve this, however I believe it is attainable.

In the classroom, from the student’s perspective, Google Glass can be used to record lectures for note taking purposes and for better understanding of the material covered when reviewed at a later date. Students can quickly “google” a topic and receive hits instantly to help them better understand what is being discussed or taught. Yes this can be achieved using your standard smart phone, but Google Glass will make this more “natural” and “instantaneous” to do.

Do I expect educators and students to toss Google Glass in the classrooms and lecture halls and anticipate the learning process to be successful? Absolutely not, however a conversation definitely will need to be had regarding its usage and functionality within the confines of the learning process. Many students will find ways to use the technology as a distraction, which is why the conversation needs to be had regarding procedures and practices while in the classroom setting. Similar to the discussions regarding smartphone, laptop, and tablet usage in the classroom, Google Glass will definitely update policies and protocols previously established. For instance, only using Google Glass in authorized settings as to not elicit negative reactions from those who are around, i.e. wearing Google Glass in restrooms, during examinations, etc. Instead of educators fighting and pushing back on the notion of using Google Glass in the classrooms, they should embrace and use the technology to assist in the learning process. Ten years ago, cell phones and laptops were prohibited in the classroom and deemed distractions, whereas today they are incorporated in the learning experience.

Overall, many professors and teachers have already explored ways to utilize Glass in the classroom. They start out as skeptics and later are changed into believers. Silvia Tolisano talks about her difficulty adjusting the first day she used it at her school in her blog, First Experiences with Google Glass at School.   Josh Fuller chronicles his three-week trial of Google Glass in the classroom on his blog site A Tech Ed World, where his initial thoughts of Glass vastly changed upon his three-week usage. Granted he was not totally against the idea of using Glass in the classroom, he sees its potential to be a great learning tool to “enhance education.”

Google Glass definitely has my vote for a new and emerging technology that will be beneficial in education in the near future.

Let’s MOOV

by Zafir Choudhury, DDI student intern, Summer 2014

Today I want to tell you about a wearable technology called MOOV. Well, I know what you might be thinking: What is it? And what can it do for me? MOOV is your very own personal trainer. It is used mainly for exercising and working out. It aids the athlete (yes, you) in a variety of routine exercises. For example, it will provide you with the details of your run and helpful safety tips as well as pointers about how you can enhance your mid-day jog. The personal trainer makes itself one with your body as if it were your body responding back to you. It pushes you to go harder during the workout or to focus more on a specific technique. Wear it as a watch, wrist band, around your arm, or on your apparel. It is offered by and you can pre-order it at this website:

Google Glass: Changing The Way We Live

By Eric Boykin, DDI student intern, Summer 2014

Wearable technology is becoming the tangible high tech movement of the future. Wearable technologies are a combination of computers and advanced computing technologies conveniently packaged in clothing and/or accessories. One wearable technology I found to be noteworthy is Google Glass. With all its highly technical features and capabilities, Google Glass, I propose, will be the proverbial answer to all things futuristic and practical.

Google Glass is a wearable computer that has a cubed shaped glass prism display just above the right eye that displays information from the Internet. Its 640×360 resolution can display the current time and anything else you command or set to display in your field of vision. It has a built-in camera that can capture pictures and videos of anything going on around you with voice commands beginning with, “Okay Glass…” (i.e. Okay Glass, take a picture/record video). In turn, the picture or video can be uploaded to any social media site (facebook, twitter, tumblr, etc) instantaneously. Appointment information, flight information and/or meeting reminders will automatically appear on the display via Google Now reminders. Weather was provided for the departure and arrival cities with the instinctive application. Voice commands are not the only way to control/use this intuitive piece of equipment. Glass can be controlled by hand gestures – a series of taps and swipes – along-side the Glass device. Glass allows you to perform almost any function you can think of via approved apps located within the MyGlass app or website.

Glass can be obtained one of two ways: 1) shipping to your location or 2) picking it up from one of the Google offices in the country. There you can schedule an orientation and fitting for your instinctual device. Glass can be used with your prescription glasses or sunglasses as well. You will learn to connect Google Glass to your phone using the MyGlass application, which allows a quick way to add contacts, applications, WiFi networks, and display your Google Glass display on your smartphone. Glass utilizes most cell phone platforms – including but not limited to iPhone, Windows, and of course Android – some features such as SMS messaging, turn-by-turn directions, and the calendar app may not operate due to limitations on the operating system.  All is not lost, using the MyGlass website ( allows you to add the same information without using the MyGlass app for your phone. Streaming music, storing data (photos, videos, music, etc.) can be done on Glass just like your smartphone. To download/upload these files, use the micro-USB port and it will mount to your computer as a folder or drive just like your smartphone.

Glass currently retails at $1,500 and should only be purchased through Google or any authorized Google dealer. Yes, this is a rather expensive piece of eyewear, but think of it as a miniature computer or smartphone worn on your face. Though I foresee the price becoming more affordable as time progresses, I believe it is worth the investment. As technology becomes more and more integrated in our everyday lives, we will see the way we communicate, interact, and even create memories change before our very eyes.

Welcome to the DDI Blog!

We’re excited to roll out a new Web site for the Duke Digital Initiative (DDI), especially since we now have a blog! We hope you’ll enjoy reading about what we’re doing and thinking. If you’d like to write a guest blog post for us, just let us know! Contact us at

— Elizabeth A. Evans