Frequent and timely dispatches from Virginia Tech's Newman Library for members (faculty, students, and staff) of the Human Nutrition, Foods and Exercise Department, supporting the mission of delivering, translating, and disseminating health-related advances in the nutrition, food, and exercise sciences.
Continuing our discussion from last summer about mobile technologies and iPad uses in research, the classroom, or life, I thought we'd talk a bit today about the many health apps that seem to be taking over many people's mobile devices! This post was first inspired by the apps I kept hearing about that would pull up nutritional information for food. But, after a bit of research and exploration, I discovered that there are many, many health and fitness apps available: calorie counters, food diaries, and exercise tracking! I'm listing a few cool ones below, and then mention a few sites that aggregate this information, or provide background information about the content provided through these apps:
One of the perks of being a librarian is having easy access to guides like Choice, where subject experts review books, websites, and other resources. I often use the books reviewed in Choice to add to the collection here at Newman Library, but this week, Choice reviewed several free, really cool websites that I just had to share with you all:
Of the three sites I'm discussing here, I'm guessing that the Dietary Guidelines is the one that you may already be familiar with. This site represents the federal government's evidence-based recommendations for promoting health. This is the 7th edition of the Dietary Guidelines, and includes an executive summary with key recommendations, 6 chapters detailing healthy eating practices, and some consumer-specific information.
The USDA NEL provides a "key resource for making food and nutrition research available to all Americans." Essentially, this site provides the systematic reviews that inform federal policies and documents, such as the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. The A-Z index that is part of this resource actually provides the systematic review questions that researchers used to review, evaluate, and synthesize food and nutrition related research. If you don't have access to the ADA Evidence Analysis Library, this resource might be a good alternative.
According to its website, the Rudd Center at Yale "assess, critiques, and strives to improve practices and policies related to nutrition and obesity so as to inform and empower the public, to promote objective, science-based approaches to policy, and to maximize the impact on public health." The page provides a list of hot topics, and discusses research revolving around a number of various perspectives on food policy and obesity. Explore it for some interesting reading and ideas about how research projects can inform and change policy.
Have you heard about the Newman Classic Film Series? This fall (through the end of October), Newman Library will be hosting free films from our collection every Sunday night on the lawn between Torgersen Hall and Newman Library. We're also providing free popcorn and bottled water (you'll need to bring your own blanket/lawn chair), so why not join us?
This Sunday (October 2), we'll be featuring three short films from the 1960s on keeping your kitchen (and household) running efficiently. The first two short films were produced right here at VPI: 15 Minutes to Mealtime and Freeze for Ease. The third film, Alice in Numberland, is a USDA film from the same time period.
When I first started this blog in July 2010, I promised to post at least 2-4 times a week. Last week, I was so busy I was unable to keep up with this, which is both good and bad. It's good, because that means I was reaching a lot of people through in-person consultations and research discussions; the bad part was that so many of the discussions and consultations centered around EndNote.
While EndNote is definitely difficult to use sometimes, I noticed a few common questions that I'd like to address right here:
1. What IS EndNote?
While you can search online databases via EndNote, EndNote is not, itself, a literature database like PubMed or Web of Science. EndNote is a tool that lets you build "libraries," or groups of references. You can add references to your library using three different methods (one of which is the online search), and EndNote should connect with Word so that it will create in-text citations and bibliographic references for you. If you'd like to explore EndNote without downloading it to your own computer just yet, check out our software list to see exactly which public computers in the library have EndNote installed on them: http://www.lib.vt.edu/about/campus-software.html.
2. Why can't I see my Cite While You Write toolbar in Word?
This is by FAR the most frequent question asked over the last few weeks. When installed, EndNote should automatically install the Cite While You Write tools in Word. However, if you don't see it as a tab or under the "Tools" menu in Word, then you may be experiencing one of several common problems:
4. I need help just learning how to use EndNote, in general!
If you want to take a class in EndNote, schedule a one-on-one tutorial, or just watch some good online tutorials explaining EndNote, I can help you with all of those. First of all, University Libraries offers EndNote classes at least once a month. We always announce these on our website, like here: http://www.lib.vt.edu/libnews/2011/2011-10-04.html.
Additionally, I am always available for one-on-one consultations; simply send me an email and we'll set something up.
Finally, I can recommend the EndNote tutorials created by the librarians at the UNC Health Sciences Library: http://www.hsl.unc.edu/Services/Tutorials/ENDNOTE/intro.htm. While I was in graduate school, I worked at this library, and was first introduced to EndNote by the librarians here. The tutorials on the link above will help acquaint you with the basic--and some advanced--functions of the software.
Although it's now halfway through September, it's never too late to discuss new books that we've recently added to our collection here at Newman Library! Each month, the library posts all of the new books that we added the previous month, and on this blog, I highlight a few of these new books that I think readers of this blog might be particularly interested in. All of the books listed below are available for check out--unless someone gets to the library before you do!
Chances are, if you've been around Wallace Hall lately, you've seen the flyers I've posted about my Fall 2011 HNFE Librarian Office Hours:
I do this every semester. However, this semester, you may notice a new image on that flyer--a QR (Quick Response) code. You've probably noticed these little codes popping up in magazines, and all over the place. Basically, they're used as a quick link from the physical world to the digital world. You would use your mobile device (iPod Touch, iPhone, iPad, Blackberry, etc.) to scan the QR code, which would then act like a link to a webpage. If you scanned the QR code on the flyer, it would take you directly to this blog!
Basically, it's pretty easy to both generate and scan QR codes. One of the better-known QR code generators is called Kaywa: http://qrcode.kaywa.com/. You can simply pop in a URL, and generate a code right there.
Devices usually need a code reader in order to read these codes; some mobile devices come with QR code reader. Others will require you to download one. For my iPad2, for example, I needed to visit the app store and select a free QR code reader app. You can find many lists (like this one) that will detail the pros and cons of various QR code readers.
If you'd really like to play around with QR codes, visit Newman Library to take our self-guided QR code tour! Don't have a mobile device? Check out an iPad2 from the circulation desk in order to take the tour! Just let me know if you have any questions about that.
Every semester, I try to make it to as many HNFE classes and meetings as I can, just to say hi and introduce myself. This year, I decided to try something new: since I simply can't get to every class or meeting that I'd like to, I've created a short (< 2 minutes) video. Take a look, pass it along, and come and see me soon!
With the advent of the first game of the season (Go Hokies!), thoughts of football inevitably lead to thoughts of tailgating! Finger foods, barbecue, beverages, and cornhole...is everyone ready?
If not, you may want to check out today's Culinary History Highlight, a manual for preparing what would sure have been consumed during an 1899 tailgate--Sandwiches, Salads, and Chafing-dish Dainties. Written by Ms. Janet McKenzie Hill during the late nineteenth century, this book contains recipes and ideas for various vegetable salads, savory and sweet sandwiches, cheese confections, and even "dishes for the vegetarian."
As usual, my favorite part of this book lies in the preface, where Ms. Hill writes that:
...since many women have become anxious to compete with men in any and every walk of life, they, too, are desirous of becoming adepts in tossing up an appetizing salad or in stirring a creamy rarebit...Care has been exercised to meet the actual needs of those who wish to cultivate a taste for light, wholesome dishes, or cater to the vagaries of the most capricious appetites.