NCSU Design
collaboration: design tech | REU

Design Tech, an REU site funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) and the Department of Defense (DoD) Awards to Stimulate and Support Undergraduate Research Experiences (ASSURE), is an interactive visual design hothouse with projects spanning artificial intelligence, graphics, visualization, and visual design. Projects include cinematic camera control for interactive narratives and games; automated tours through virtual, visualized environments; agent-based visualizations of streaming data such as RSS feeds and sensor telemetries; and PDA-based navigation tools.

The Design Tech undergraduate experience involves a 12-week summer research program that provides outstanding research opportunities in the areas covered by Design Tech faculty research interests. Students receive a stipend, travel and living expenses during their participation in Design Tech. This Research Expereinces for Undergraduates (REU) program is supported by the National Science Foundation and the Department of Defense.

The Design Tech Summer 2006 programran from May to August, 2006. The targeted audience consists of both male and female students that have attained at least junior status. Undergraduate participants receive an stipend, an allowance for travel to/from Raleigh, North Carolina, housing and meals. Students will be housed in University Housing in campus dormitories. These rooms are furnished and are within walking distance of all the research laboratories. For more information about applying visit


Author(s)  Crenshaw, Matthew R.
Horne, Larry J.
Bens, Samantha R.
Home Institution North Carolina State University
Program Design Tech REU
Department(s) Computer Science
Art and Design
Research Mentor(s) Benjamin Watson/Computer Science
Pat  Fitzgerald/Art and Design
Title of Presentation Visualization of Real-time Data from RSS Feeds Using Processing

processing image


(RSS) feeds are used to quickly see a summarized list of all recent content on a website. The main objective of this year's DesignTech program is  to visually depict these feeds using Processing, an open source programming language used to easily create interactive graphics, much like Adobe's Flash tool. For our project, we chose to build a tool that allowed users to monitor feeds in the background while performing other tasks.


We have created several prototypes varying information displayed as  well as visual designs, using several elements to identify the source, age and value of the information being displayed. Some information sources  include:,  Google News, CNN, BBC News and Craigslist. The several visual designs we  have experimented with include 2D designs using floating text "rain drops," ticker tapes, as well as 3D designs using spheres and z-axis positioning.

Author(s)  Levesque, Angela M.
Mohr, Michelle L.
Home Institution Meredith College
Program Design Tech REU
Department(s) Computer Science
Art and Design
Research Mentor(s)   BenjaminWatson/Computer Science
Pat Fitzgerald/Art and Design
Title of Presentation Virtual Window Shopping

processing image

RSS (Really Simple Syndication) feeds are a tool on the Internet that notifies users about changes in websites such as online newspapers, directories, or blogs. The goal of this summer’s DesignTech program is to visually represent RSS feeds using the interactive design language, Processing 1.0. The main objective of this project is to represent feeds from online stores and exchanges, such as amazon, ebay, and craigslist.


We constructed a virtual store or gallery using images and information from the feeds to create an environment for users to browse the products. Since not all feeds contain images the current prototype finds photographs in the online image directory flickr. Eventually the prototype will depict feeds from  ebay, because this site includes links to photographs in its feeds. The application imagery is a hallway created by images on the walls that move past the viewer. These images represent theproducts that the user is “shopping” for. The user can then change categories and receive a new set of  images and feeds.


DesignTech '06 was an opportunity that provided outstanding research initiativees for Computer Science and Art+Design Students. Working together they develop innovative solutions and novel applications of internet technology for analyzing large, dynamic datasets. It provided an open forum to discuss industry trends and social implications of privacy, information and computing.



Last Updated: 8/5/06
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National Science Foundation
Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU)

NCSU Undergraduate Research Symposium

Patrick FitzGeralD
Associate Professor, Art+Design
Personal Website

Ben Watson
Assistant Professor, Computer Science
Design Graphics Lab

Lee Cherry
Manager, Advanced Media Lab
Personal Website


Computer Science & Art+ Design
Samantha Bens - Peace College - Design
Matthew Crenshaw, NCSU - Computer Science
Michelle Mohr, Peace - Design
Angela Levesque, Meredith College - Computer Science/Design
Larry Horne, NC Central University - Design

Sherry O'Neal
Director of Communications, College External Relations
NC State University, College of Design
Campus Box 7701
Raleigh , NC 27695-7701