New Resource Available: VisualDX!

VisualDx is a point-of-care decision support system used to diagnose visually presenting conditions.  The images on VisualDx capture the variations of disease presentations by age, skin type, body location, and severity.  You can search by diagnosis, medication, or use the Differential Builder to create a diagnosis from visual signs and symptoms, medical history, occupational type, travel history, and more.

Watch this video to learn more about it…

…or try taking the Product Tour, which uses a patient scenario to demonstrate how VisualDx works!

VisualDx contains over 25,000 high-quality peer-reviewed medical images spanning diseases of the skin, nails, hair, mouth, eyes, genitals, and lungs as well as other internal and systemic diseases to assist in visual diagnosis.  You can use these images in educational presentations.  Click here for directions:


Access VisualDx anywhere by downloading the Apple or Android app!

VDX iPad Display

VisualDX iPad Display

  • Go to and click on Online Databases on the left.
  • (log in through off-campus access if accessing away from UCF)
  • Click on the letter “V”
  • Click on VisualDx
  • Click “Get VisualDx Mobile” at the top right of the screen.
  • You will have to register.  Please use your UCF email address.
  • Open your email account and then follow instructions to download the app you picked.
  • Once you download and install the app, open VisualDx on your device and enter the username and password you created.
  • Start using VisualDx!


If you need assistance using this product, please visit us in person, call 407-266-1400, or email




What’s New on the Horizon?

horizon reportThe 2013 NMC Horizon Report: 2013 Higher Education Edition was released recently. The report is produced by the New Media Consortium (NMC) and the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative (ELI) and identifies emerging technologies that are expected to have a significant impact on worldwide education in the next five years.

Some of the trends and their times-to-adoption described in this year’s Horizon Report include the following:

  •  One Year or Less – Tablet Computing
  •  Two to Three Years – Games and Gamification; Learning Analytics
  •  Four to Five Year – 3D Printing and Wearable Technology

Some of these trends, including tablet computing and 3D printing are already being implemented, while others may take time to become mainstream.

To learn more about wearable technology, stay tuned for the Health Sciences Library’s Spring HSL Info Expo for UCF COM faculty and staff, coming April 4, 2013.


Read the entire NMC Horizon Report: 2013 Higher Education Edition HERE.


March is National Craft Month!

NcM_Logo_colorDid you know that March is National Craft Month? In 1994 the Craft & Hobby Association started National Craft Month to celebrate creativity. The organization encourages people to try a new craft or pick up an old project or creative endeavor.

Did you also know that the Harriet F. Ginsburg Health Sciences Library team includes some very crafty individuals? Stop by the library to check out our new display and to see some of the things the library team has created. Learn what types of crafts each team member enjoys, which crafty blogs or websites they enjoy, and why they like to craft.


Happy Match Day!

On Friday, March 15, 2013, the UCF College of Medicine’s Charter Class will join medical students all across the country for Match Day – where medical students find out which residency programs they were “matched” with. This anxiety-inducing tradition has been occurring since 1952. Students typically receive an envelope containing the name and location of the residency program to which they were matched, and all students open their envelopes simultaneously, although each medical school has its own Match Day traditions. According to the National Resident Matching Program, students who do not match are eligible to participate in the Supplement Offer and Acceptance Program or SOAP. A list of unfilled residency programs is available on Monday of Match Week and those students who do not match have an opportunity to interview for unfilled residency positions. Those students then find out on Match Day where they will end up.

It’s a strange moment. You stand there in a room with all of your fellow medical students, getting handed a white envelope that tells you what city you’re going to live in for the next — for me, seven years of my life in surgical training.

– Dr. Atul Gawande

We wish all of our Charter Class good luck on Match Day and during their residencies!

Listen to a story about Match Day on NPR and hear more from Dr. Atul Gawande’s Match Day experiences HERE.

Learn more about Match Day from the National Resident Matching Program HERE.

Calling all armchair meteorologists!

Are you a weather watcher? Do you notice how there always seems to be a 30% of chance of rain in Central Florida, yet it rarely rains? Do you want to know what the weather is really going to be like today? You are in luck! There are a slew of weather related apps available.

mPing appThe mPING app from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the University of Oklahoma allows users to update a database of current weather conditions. Data collected from the app is used to create a radar map of accurate weather conditions. This type of data gathering and information delivery is referred to as “crowd sourcing.” The mPING app allows users to select the type of precipitation they are currently experiencing in their area from a simple drop down menu. According a report by NPR, almost 60,000 weather reports have been submitted via the mPING app, which is free for both the iOS and Android operating systems.


metwit app

weddar app

Other similar crowd sourcing weather apps include Metwit, which gives real time weather maps, and Weddar, which prompts users to select weather based on how they feel (e.g., hot, great, cold, or freezing). Color-coded clouds based on user reporting are shown on a map.


Note: These apps are only available for iPhone, and while downloadable on an iPad, they are not in iPad native format.


dark sky appddark sky Want more accurate weather reports? Dark Sky is the app for you! This unusual app can alert users when it will rain or snow up to an hour before it happens. The app features a simple interface that tells users what the conditions are like right now in their exact location (e.g., No rain, 63°), and what conditions will be like in the next hour (e.g., No rain). A swipe of the screen reveals the weather for the entire day. The app also graphically displays the likelihood of precipitation in the next hour with a yellow graph that visibly oscillates as chances of weather events increase and decrease. A fun feature of Dark Sky is the “Clear Skies Are Boring” announcement, which prompts users to view storms in other locations.  A simple radar shows current weather, with a slider that allows users to see past or present weather conditions in 10 minute increments. The Dark Sky app is currently only available for iOS devices, not Android. The app is $3.99 from the Apple App Store.

weatherbug appAnother fairly accurate weather app is WeatherBug. This robust app has live radar which users can put into motion to see how weather systems are moving, an excellent interface with temperature, dew point, humidity, pressure, winds, and alerts, forecasts, lightning maps, and camera and video views so users can actually see conditions in various locations. WeatherBug is a free app, available for both iOS and Android devices.


HSL Top Pick: Dark Sky – $3.99 (iOS only)

 1st place

HSL 2nd Pick: WeatherBug – Free (iOS and Android)

weatherbug app


Can you tell someone’s heart rate by looking at their face?

Can you tell someone’s heart rate just by looking at their face? With the What’s My Heart Rate app, now you can! This free app measures minuscule color changes on your face to determine your heartbeat. According to the app’s developer (ViTrox Technologies) as your heart beats, pulses of blood are sent through your blood vessels; this blood absorbs light. The more blood flows through your vessels, the less light hitting your face is reflected. The app uses your smartphone’s front- or back-facing camera function, along with the developer’s algorithm, to detract these minor changes in light reflection in your face due to varying blood flow. This is referred to as photoplethysmography.

Once the app is launched, clicking a “play” button prompts users to center their face within a frame. The app then displays the user’s heart rate in BPM along with an EKG. ViTrox Technologies claims the app is accurate to within +/-3% when used correctly. BPM

Settings within the app allow users to set a reminder to check their heart rate weekly. Other options are available with a premium upgrade.

Note: Users can also place their chest within the marked frame and the app will measure BPM based on users’ chest movements.

Visit the Apple app store to download the What’s My Heart Rate app for iOS (iPhone/iPad) for free.

The app is also available for Android devices from the Android Market, and for Windows 8 from the developer’s website.


For more information visit