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If you hadn’t noticed, there has been a slew of articles recently recognizing Columbus, central Ohio, and the state in general as an emerging technology ecosystem. What’s behind this outpouring of tech respect, you may wonder? Well, it’s a combination of some attributes that have been around for quite some time (very few hurricanes and earthquakes, geographic centrality, low cost of living, etc.) and a handful that are more recently attributed to the region.

 

I confess that when I joined the Ohio Technology Consortium as a communications intern during my sophomore year at The Ohio State University, I had only a surface-level understanding of what OH-TECH’s members do. I understood that OARnet supplies broadband to colleges and universities, I knew OhioLINK provides research articles to students, and I had a vague understanding of what supercomputers do and how they are used by Ohio Supercomputer Center clients.

SME (a non-profit student and professional association for educating and advancing the manufacturing industry in North America) recently invited me to conduct a half-day workshop at its  AeroDef Manufacturing conference/exposition March 26-29 at the Long Beach Convention Center, Long Beach, California.

Lingying Zhao’s agricultural group at The Ohio State University is changing the way Ohio farmers are practicing their craft – and how they impact the environment around them. The group is participating in several grant programs from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) that are making lasting change in the field of agriculture. In the Ohio Supercomputer Center’s most recent research report, we wrote about one of the incredible projects Zhao’s group is researching.

Hood

Many who aren’t familiar with OARnet are blown away by what it does, and provides Ohioans, once they fully digest the full scope of the organization. Such was the case for Julie Hood.

Hood joined the OARnet team as its program coordinator in July 2017, she was drawn to the organization because she was interested in the challenge of working in an industry that was new to her.

Hood recently spoke with OARnet about her favorite parts of her job, a performance she gave with gold medalist and figure skating personality Scott Hamilton, how she enjoys spending her free time, and which famous person from history she would most want to have dinner with.

The Physics of Video Games

Until recently, Hourofcode.com didn’t have any coding activities with a physics focus. That is, until Chris Orban, Ph.D., assistant professor of Physics at The Ohio State University’s Marion Campus, created an hour of code activity on "The Physics of Video Games" and launched the STEMcoding project. These coding tutorials are being integrated in physics classrooms around the world. The purpose of Orban’s STEMcoding project is to make coding more accessible to high school students. 

 

The National Science Foundation’s Campus Cyberinfrastructure (CC*) program provides funding for campus-level networking improvements and resources for science applications and distributed research projects. The program emphasizes learning and workforce development (LWD) in cyberinfrastructure.

Proposals for these awards are due Jan. 30, 2018. I’ve put together some general guidelines and helpful tips for OARnet members who may be interested in applying for the CC* 18-508 funds. OARnet might be able to help bolster your proposal and your network.

I had the privilege of going on a mission trip to Haiti Dec. 4-8 with Food for the Poor. I was stepping outside my comfort zone in so many ways – I was flying for the first time in over 15 years and traveling solo, I was leaving my husband and son to fend for themselves, and I decided to reduce my use of technology. The technology reduction is no small feat, considering it consumes my career as part of the Ohio Technology Consortium’s Shared Infrastructure team.

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