What’s ‘supp? Find out if your supplements are really working for you

A while ago we told you about a great database called Natural Standard. Recently that database was re-branded and re-released as Natural Medicines. A new, better-fitting name notwithstanding, this is still a terrific database that everyone should keep bookmarked.

Natural Medicines database provides clinically relevant, bottom-line-focused information and ratings on over 90,000 commercial dietary supplements, natural medicines, and complementary alternative and integrative therapies.

If you ever wondered whether that gingko you’ve been taking for memory, or that St. John’s Wort you thought about trying are worth a trip to the drug or health store, try Natural Medicines Effectiveness Checker. It gives you a quick comparison of the effectiveness of different natural medicines for specific conditions. You can also check interaction between drugs and supplements.

I personally used this database (as Natural Standard) quite frequently for its Pregnancy and Lactation Checker feature during both of my pregnancies. You can search for safety data on specific integrative therapies that have been studied for use during pregnancy and lactation. Now you don’t have to worry about whether goji berries are safe to consume during pregnancy (hint: probably not!).

For those of our readers not affiliated with UCF COM, Natural Medicines does have a free consumer website you can check out here.

Wait, I Can Borrow That?

If our library is any indication, library services aren’t entirely what they used to be. We only have around 1,200 or so physical books, but did you know that the items that get borrowed from our library most frequently are actually technology related? Librarians are working really hard to expand the functions of libraries, and find new ways to attract patrons. One way to do this is by providing innovative new technologies in order to bring the library into the 21st century.  We wrote a bit last year about two Florida Libraries expanding their range of services, the Melrose Center at the Downtown Orange County Library, along with the University of South Florida’s library, to include cool things like recording studios, camera equipment, and drones. It’s not just about providing books anymore!

seed library

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Apple’s Spring Forward Event Big Topic Recap

In case you missed it, Apple held an event on Monday to make some announcements about the new products it will be soon releasing. So naturally, we fired up our Apple TV and connected it to the big screen in the library to broadcast to anyone interested. We had a bit of fun live-tweeting portions of the event on Twitter.

This one happened a little later, too:

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Tech Talk Thursday: The Latest Throwback in Technology

Tech Talk banner

An interesting new wearable is soon to be released. There are those who think that I might be referring to Apple’s new entry into the smartwatch field. The release of that new device is indeed imminent. In fact Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO, has said that the Apple Watch will be released in April. To that end Apple will be holding a “Spring Forward” special event on Monday, March 9 (the very day after we all spring forward in time and lose a precious hours of sleep). During this event Apple is expected to release new details about Apple’s forthcoming smartwatch.

But, while I am certainly interested in Apple’s new device, the wearable of which I speak is the Runcible, a new smartphone that saw its public premiere this week during Mobile World Congress. What is so interesting about another smartphone? First take a look at a couple of pictures.

The front

The Front

The back

The Back

Pictures from PCMag.com.

This new smartphone/wearable is a throwback of sorts to the day of the pocket watch. It is in fact a modern smartphone outfitted with all of the technology expected including Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and LTE. The Runcible, a creation of a company called Monohm, runs the Firefox OS. The makers of this smartphone feel that the other smartphones of today immerse us in notifications to the point of overwhelming us. The Runcible, while technically capable of providing these notifications, chooses to take a step back and allows us to stay connected to the data that we need through our smartphones while not losing focus with the real world around us.

For more information on this new phone click through the following links.

PCMag

C|NET