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ETC Lab & Equipment Information

What is the ETC Lab?

The LATIS Emerging Technologies and Creativity (ETC) Lab developed from the desire to empower innovative risk taking in faculty, staff, and students by exploring emerging technologies and tools in a low-stakes environment.  The goal is to support the CLA community in nurturing creative, mindful users and scholars with new technologies that are shaping our lives and scholarship.  This is an experimental space aimed at improving the CLA community’s access to emerging technologies, such as virtual reality, 3D printing, “Internet of Things” technologies, hackable and embedded technologies, etc.

Who can use it?

Any CLA faculty, staff, or students enrolled in CLA courses.

Cost?

There is no fee to use the equipment or space, though users do need to provide their own storage devices such as jump drives to save their work.

When?

Open hours every Friday during the semester, 10am - 4pm.  

Where?

Come find us in Anderson Hall 110!  Some of our equipment can also be taken “on the road”.  If you are a member of the CLA community and have an event or class that would benefit from access to the equipment, please let us know at etclab@umn.edu!

Tool

Description

3D Modeling & printing

3D Printer (MakerBot Replicator Mini)

The MakerBot Replicator Mini is a small-form 3D printer.  It works by extruding filament onto a print bed, building up your printed object layer by layer.

Please note: 3D prints can take several hours to complete, depending on size.  Allow at least 48 hours from the start of printing, and then come back to check on it and re-run if necessary.  Recommended: Start your print in the morning and come back to check on it later in the day -or- start your print at the end of the day, run it overnight, and check on it in the morning.  Anderson 110 is open 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. Monday - Friday if users need to check on 3D printing.

For product info:

http://store.makerbot.com/replicator-mini

For some ready-to-print objects you can download and print:

http://www.thingiverse.com/ 

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Virtual reality & high-fidelity media

Google Cardboard

Google Cardboard is a portable virtual reality headset that can be used with a smartphone for viewing 360° media.  We have a set of 20 headsets available, so come try it on your own, or use it with a class!

Various VR applications can be downloaded via the Cardboard app on any enabled device.  Works with both Android and iOS phones, and best with larger screens (iPhone 5S and older will not work). We also have compatible devices available for use in the ETC Lab.

For product info:
http://www.imcardboard.com/dscvr/pre-order-dscvr-headset-for-smartphones-will-start-shipping-on-december-1-2015.html

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Ricoh Theta 360 Camera

The Ricoh Theta is a 360° camera for shooting 3D photo and video.  

You can download the “Theta S” app and operate the camera remotely through its built-in WiFi controls.  Video can be hosted and viewed on YouTube. Uses can also utilize 360° footage for viewing in Google Cardboard, a simple handheld virtual reality viewer that attaches to a smartphone.

For product info:

https://theta360.com/en/

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HTC Vive

The HTC Vive is a virtual reality system complete with headset, controllers, and room tracking devices.  Want to step into a Van Gogh painting?  Build a virtual universe?  Dance in a virtual ballet?  Come check out the Vive!

The device is connected to a computer with easy-to-launch Steam VR games and applications.  You can also create your own content with 3D modeling software (Autodesk Maya and Blender) and game creation software (Unity and Unreal Engine). 

For product info:
https://www.htcvive.com/us/

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Oculus Rift DK2

The Oculus Rift is a virtual reality headset.  

A computer is available that supports Oculus viewing, or users may bring their own computer.  Be aware that the Oculus only works well on computers with supported graphics cards.  Users are encouraged to do some background research to see if their personal computers can support Oculus display.

For product info:

https://www.oculus.com/en-us/dk2/

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Leap Motion Controller

Leap Motion is a VR controller that senses and uses hand movements to control digital environments.

For product info:

https://www.leapmotion.com/

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UAS/Drone (DJI Phantom)

The DJI Phantom is an unmanned aerial flying device capable of filming high-resolution video.  

Available for indoor use only, and with the support of a LATIS staff member to set up and fly the drone.  (Availability may vary based on staff scheduling.)

For product info:

http://www.dji.com/product/phantom-3-pro

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Wearable Technologies

Pebble Smart Watch

The Pebble is a smartwatch that connects to a smartphone via Bluetooth and offers activity and sleep tracking features, notifications, and music control.

Users download the Pebble app and then sync the watch to a smartphone to use the “smart” features of the watch.  Adventurous users who are willing to learn code can write their own apps to run on the Pebble.  

For product info and app ideas:

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Google Glass

Google Glass is a wearable headset with basic field-of-vision information display capabilities and a camera for filming point-of-view video.

Please be aware that Google Glass works best on private WiFi connections, or via phone tethering.  It does not connect to University enterprise WiFi networks.

For product info:

https://support.google.com/glass/answer/3064128?hl=en

For more information on the Google Glass project: https://developers.google.com/glass/ 

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LilyPad Kit

LilyPad is a kit for creating wearable e-textile projects.  Use it to prototype wearable projects that light up, buzz, sense, and adapt to your environment.  

If you are working on a project and need replacement textiles or specialized LilyPad equipment, let us know and we can help you find funding and resources to keep your project going!

For product information and project ideas:

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Internet of Things

Makey Makey

Makey Makey is a device that allows users to turn everyday conductive objects (ex: fruits and other foods, metal objects, buckets of water, skin-to-skin contact) into a keyboard-like touchpad.

For product info and project ideas:

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Amazon Echo

The Amazon Echo is a speaker and voice recognition system that lets you explore the capabilities of voice recognition technology.  The Echo can answer questions, read audiobooks and the news, report traffic and weather, and control other “smart devices”.

For product info:

https://www.amazon.com/Amazon-Echo-Bluetooth-Speaker-with-WiFi-Alexa/dp/B00X4WHP5E

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Amazon IoT Button

The AWS IoT Button is a programmable “internet of things” button based on the Amazon Dash Button hardware.

Users can code the button's logic in the cloud to configure button clicks to count or track items, call or alert someone, start or stop something, order services, or even provide feedback.

For product info:

https://aws.amazon.com/iot/button/

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Raspberry Pi Kit

Raspberry Pi is a microcomputer that lets you create embedded art or sensor projects, visual displays, or other “internet of things” projects.

A selection of sensors is also available for use with the Raspberry Pi’s GPIO pins.  Or, users may purchase their own sensors, many of which are relatively inexpensive, for use with the Raspberry Pi.

For product info and project ideas:

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Particle Photon Kits

Particle Photon is an “internet of things” device that lets you capture sensor information and publish it over WiFi.

A selection of sensors is also available for use with the Photon.  Or, users may purchase their own sensors--many of which are relatively inexpensive--for use with the Photon kit.

Please be aware that the Photon works best on home or unsecured WiFi connections.  It does not connect to University enterprise WiFi networks.

For product info and project ideas:

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