Inside UNC Charlotte -- December 2012

Uploaded by unccharlottevideo on 09.01.2013

The following program is a UNC Charlotte production
Welcome Inside UNC Charlotte
First up in this edition, and inside look at
Andreas Bechtler the artist, to show an exhibit at the Projective Eye Gallery at
UNC Charlotte Center City
Then we'll visit with software and information systems major Jeremy Olson
who has grown his company, Tappity, and
recently partnered with sonico mobile
to create the translation app, Languages
This fall, Niner Nation saw the completion of a project that captured the
dreams of many
the 49ers football stadium is complete and is a jewel on the UNC Charlotte campus

we'll talk with UNC Charlotte professor and best-selling author A.J.
Hartley to
learn more about his recent novel
that reimagines that Scottish Play
plus throughout the program, we
will meet donors to the University and scholarship recipients
to hear more about how gifts to UNC Charlotte make a direct impact on student
this and more on Inside UNC Charlotte
Andreas Bechtler is a significant participant in the local and
international arts community
not just as a collector but as an artist himself
now at the Projective Eye Gallery at UNC Charlotte Center City
you can see the exhibit "Andreas Bechtler The Artist" a retrospective of his work
concentrating on his motion studies
figurine works
and self-portraits
Inside UNC Charlotte was invited to bring our cameras into the artist's
studios for a preview of the exhibit
We are now at
Mountain Island Lake
a place we call the Little Italy Peninsula Art Center
and it's a little
grouping of houses
they're all built
the same way
of simple structures and uh... each house has four studios for artists to
work in
we're now in the
show room that I can look
at images that are
the ones that are framed are uh...
those that go to galleries
and uh...
so for example
if you look at that green one with the nails so that's uh... one of the
figurines that
is yet finished not framed but it will go
it's close to being finished will be on campus then framed
his work is primarily abstract narrative so there's a sense of abstraction but
there's also
a narrative and a story being told
he manipulates it after he takes the photograph
uh... and that's where a lot of the abstraction comes in
and he takes a lot of things in and out of focus and plays with selective focus
and that obscures or clarifies certain
aspects uh...
i would say that he's a very free play artist that does abstract narratives
somewhat post-modern
but also very contemporary art
i don't think you can totally categorize what he's doing which that's what i like
so all these on that wall you see there are these figurines
then lower
standing on the floor
in this um...
the motion picture uh... will go
also to gallery
i found them full of love, full of a sense of humor
um... that he's definitely
playing with some kind of elements of
paradox built on
on scaled put on the uh... associations and the context of for of objects or or
the this the setting of these photographs
so they are
a certain level of narrative
implied stories and uh...
kind of intriguing moments
that are relating to our everyday life experience
and probably
I find them very autobiographical
but there are some element which implies connection to his life experience
very accessible but also quite quite personal I will say
world of references to the water and to the sand
to the beach and Andreas has been talking about it
and there's there's a lot of humor in them and i think we can see allusions to

the culture that surrounds us
in this area we see figurines on the wall
straight down
three images they are not framed yet but the framed ones
will come soon and then they go to art and architecture college also
down town
i'm lucky that uh...
Andreas' creative free play
transpired into this room
and that he
welcomes the fact that we have a gallery with
two glass walls
as you can see behind me he's playing with that, so he's using
the natural light and the architectural
elements of the room to expand his work
in more of an installation way
which i think um... glorifies it really and our space so it's a mutually
beneficial situation
you know this is an uplifting image for me it's a
that shows
the girl that walks into spring
and uh... of for the for the gallery sees that
we have created
a special installation on fabric for the the window with that goes to the
street where the gallery is so
it will be
uh... a collection of of uh... manipulation of this of mother image
what i call it
this is derived from the series of art shots with uh... with the
idea of the girl in spring
uh... for from from this we took
uh... elements to create these uh...
this curtains for the gallery
nature is always a big part of his work that's kind of at
the locus of everything he does, I think
and then he manipulates nature in creating these settings the settings and
these little narratives
these images here are
winterscapes from Switzerland
was a lot of snow and uh...
but I transformed them into
into these uh...
stretched landscapes
Andreas is extremely humble
private and
very gentle
very generous
and very selfless
i don't think I met anybody like that in my entire life actually
He is very unique
right my creative process is not thought out it is
picked up
there, and then I have the plan
the chance to photograph it than uh...
that's just the first step has been taken them
than from very it goes
to the computer and then
one of the medias I can print it on
or it will be re-photographed again
or i take an image sheet that is now a two-dimensional
picture for example
and take it with me and go to the lake and put it in the water
then put sand on it and start all over again
so it's
it's uh... very often it's just a wonderful playing with
what is around me
it's really exciting for the Center City Projective Eye Gallery to have him here
mostly because we're kind of uncovering
all the art that he's been doing during the last ten years that people haven't seen
and so
we're just elated to have
all of this artwork shown
to a lot of people for the first time

over the course of about a year or two
the dean, Mary Lynn Calhoun, and I
and my wife had
several discussions about
some particular interest that I had, we had
in education and specifically zeroed in
on the fact that
perhaps a lot of young people might
families that did not get a
particular orientation to college
and how to prepare for college
so this was
the conclusion that the Middle Grades University
would target eighth graders
who would some time on the campus
with a mentor from the College of Education, come three or four times a year
but in the course of that discussion we said we'd like
to be able to say to the participants that if you earn a
satisfactory high school degree there will be a scholarship opportunity
uh... available for you
to take a kid who is in middle school
and show him what else is out there in the world and what he could possible become
that really had
a great impact
on my life, and then actually
receiving a scholarship was like
I really did something that someone looked at
and deemed we worthy
it really
my college education
because without it without it I would probably be in debt currently
to me that's that's the most valuable aspect of
our educational scholarship
is the opportunity to
have the contact
uh... with the students and
sort of follow their progression
Jeremy Olson is a software and information systems major here at UNC
in 2011 he won the Apple Design Award
for his app, Grades
since then he's grown his company, Tappity, and recently partnered with
Sonico Mobile to create the translation app, Languages
Languages is an offline translation app
one thing that Sonico, our partner, realized is that over half of their 30 million users are, over half of their queries, are for single words, and one of their most requested features was to have translation
without an internet connection so you have the bookshelf full of your actual
translation dictionaries that gives the impression that their actually there on
the so then when you go into the dictionary
you can actually just swipe through like a regular translation dictionary
alphabetically whatever and we have a lot of cool ways to just browse through
the language that are really fun with with the smart index that you can take
your finger on the the side of the screen and it magnifies the letters here
your fingers around so you can jump through to the letter you want
but then the main thing that people are going to use the search and we what we
wanted to make search really smart
uh... and really fast
so basically uh... you've you can start typing a few letters and it will
find words that match those letters but also find the translation of that word
in the other language and we didn't want people have to switch modes of
thinking so you can put words in either of the languages that you're working
with and it will find the correct translation we spent hundreds of hours of design
we'd go through the user's experience and think about
uh... what they need and uh... go through their workflow things like
analyzing that
uh... and then coming up with sketching the interface sketching out
how screens work together uh... and then going into Photoshop and
making it look pretty, that kind of thing. Jeremy has given me a bunch of
different designs to work on within the app
um... the key, and major role I worked on was the icon
when people go there that's the first thing they see is the icon
so it's crucial that it's very
thought out and pretty
I usually start out with sketching in a notebook, then I go to Jeremy and
we talk about
what should be in there and what the users would get out of it
Jeremy's education at UNC Charlotte has played an important role in his
He enrolled in the Certificate of Business Entrepreneurship and the Ventureprise
student incubator programs to help grow Tappity
in addition
the courses in software and information systems have refined his design skills
human-computer interaction course and the rapid prototyping course those were a
big help to me going up on kind of solidifying some of the concepts that
i'd been learning just to practice in the introduction to human-computer
interaction the students alternate between doing individual projects and
group projects
and it basically covers the whole design cycle of
of human centered designs so it's about going out and finding a problem and
understanding users
in that problem domain so it means going out on campus or outside of campus and actually
interviewing people and really focusing in on
a problem in its context and that's how the people really deal with that and
prototyping solutions, figuring out
what could possibly be solutions and then actually
sort of doing up a minor implementation of solutions and testing it
and the big idea there is how do you actually go out there and test this with real users
to figure out can they really use this, what sort of problems do they encounter
the really big point of this is that the cycle is iterative, that you keep on doing
this over and over again
actually i've learned a lot currently from our class, she gives a lot of
good amount of work but her principles and design have
helped me focus on what I need to
and then in the rapid prototyping an interface-building class
it's really actually about taking that middle chunk of the design cycle
and delving deeper into it so what are the tools we can use
to try out our design ideas, to get them out of our brains
and into some form that people can can work with so we do everything from
designing with Play Doh to actually designing physical form factor devices to
sketching storyboards that are like comic strips
uh... paper prototyping video prototyping with movies
uh... and then building things with digital tools so there's all sorts of
digital tools, there is actually an explosion right now of digital tools
that allow you to prototype
your software ideas
uh... and at the end the class they actually do a real implementation in
in a programming language like Java. Dr. Toome is in charge of the entrepreneurship program
here at UNC Charlotte when the program started i really was excited about that
and so I took of all the classes from that program
and uh... we continue to uh... work together he's he's helped a lot and
different aspects of Tappity kind of networking making connections to meet
people hooking me up with people in the press here in Charlotte, things
like that so uh... Dr. Tim has been a great help for me and a great resource
throughout my years here
Whether it was financial or strategic issues management issues teambuilding
product development
project management all these kinds of things are in our certificate program
because we want to build strong entrepreneurs
smart ones to start the strong one who are able to manage their business well
but then third level
is we want them to be able to grow it
over at Ventureprise, now it is over at The Ben Craig Center
they have a student incubator there
where student-run businesses can apply
they can have access to
that incubator
now you get the rooms for free
you get equipment on occasion you get
mentoring by some of the experts who was there also that they can connect you
with people that they know
we take them through different
mentoring counseling um... sessions with uh... primarily myself and also Devin
Collins and Paul Wettenhall that work with me
um... taking them through different aspects of their companies
uh... helping them learn and grow uh... try to advance um...
more so through our through our mentoring than they would on their own
so that's our primary objective. We take them through different stages of
process depending on
what level of stage they are in their growth process
um... for company like Tappity, they were already in business they had customers
they had a little bit of revenue um... so we kinda went beyond what we
normally start company with because they already had a good foundation
so we helped him refine his business plan we've got some self
uh... take him through a SWOT analysis of his company uh... and now we're getting ready to start
his 2013 budget and implementing an accounting system and
what we really want to support is a company like Jeremy's that is not only
has a market in charlotte but has a market nationwide and even worldwide
Apple has featured us
on their main iTunes page
we also have gotten, me and Jeremy have designed a banner that went across, right when you
opened the iTunes app store
that shows Languages and has the books we designed designed it so like that
but I was thinking this is all the way across the world, it is not just a local thing
our project I do at school or for myself it's is all across the world and
thousands and thousands of people using it and to see these websites
uh... showing our app that we've made headlines like
language is the best translator money can buy it just really cool
because while he was like something we made something right here we've made
we've been working on it for
over a year and finally it's paid off a lot of the press that have talked about it
like this is just the best-designed translation app that's on
the market
and it's also the funnest to use
My father was always very interested because
he only went through the 8th grade
and he was
very interested in
other people being able to
do better than that
and so this was one of the things that he left in his estate
this foundation that he started in nineteen
uh... ninety six
oh it's very rewarding and it's just wonderful
to be able to meet these
young people and have a little
conversation with them
help some people out who might not be able to obtain that
further education
when I finished my masters I wasn't sure
I knew I wanted to do a Ph.D. but I wasn't sure if I wanted to stay here or
go somewhere else
uh... obviously funding is a big part of that and this gift really made it
possible for me to stay here and continue doing work within the Charlotte region
that I love
it's great to know that I have that security of that funding and I don't
have to think about that and I can focus my time on my studies instead and on my
um... my research and that's that's the difference it makes sense it's a huge
I think that graduate research and graduate education are really important
in a lot of ways
and I know that the type of research I do does have effects on our local
economy and the City of Charlotte and so I think that investing in graduate
education is a great investment in
your city and your state
you know that's just a really good thing to do
and it is just a very important thing to do
I started talking to the people here that I know on campus
is this real? is this really going to happen?
I had been involved in Robison Hall, Cato Hall, so I knew the campus and
uh... I love sports and this was kinda like my dream project to do a new stadium
it's very hard to find a school of this size
that builds a ground-up football stadium
because most schools this size already have a football team
and they may add on to their stadium
but they don't build a new one
so most schools that are buildine one are much smaller than this University so to
opportunity to get to go in and do that is truly once in a lifetime
yeah that was interesting because that's the first time I've been on the inside
of building a facility like this; we opened a facility at Marshall University back in
we just kind of moved in there and we really didn't have anything to do with
the process and this was a lot
you know which was a lot more fun because they would ask my opinion on things in
sometimes they would do them, sometimes they wouldn't, but at least you were
involved so it was kinda fun from from our end. You know we really were able
to blend in the architecture
uh... of the field house
uh... with the existing buildings uh...
to see that and see how fit into the context was was
pretty rewarding
that the press box is kind of a
unique challenge because
we call it our Doctor Jekyll and Mister Hyde building because one half
kind of responds to the architecture of the
CRI campus and the other half he wants to be as open and visible to the playing field
how that was that there was a pretty unique challenge you know we haven't done a
building like that that's kinda two-sided
uh... so to see that actually
come off is pretty exciting. To come out of the tunnel, there is a
capstone over the arch when you come out of the tunnel that has the
Niner logo etched into the capstone
I always show that to people; that's one thing I think people would walk right by
but uh... but I just think that's that's when the best touches. There's not too many places
on campus where they put the logo into something that permanent
and uh... I love the fact that this right
that every time the players come out that's what they're going to come out under
and I was here for that
uh... scrimmage couple weeks ago and that was another cool experience
see actual fans in the stadium and you know I was talking to the coach after the
scrimmage and he was saying
how loud it was and I think because everybody's so close to the stadium
I think the atmosphere is going to be pretty energizing
That was a big day for all of us not only the players but us as coaches
to walk out there
to the stand out there and take it all in
I always think back to
you know one ACC championship at Wake Forest and beating Boston College at night
you just understand that there's a lot of memories out there on the football field
that get a chance to do things
that haven't been done before, to just kind of stand out there and think
which could be a lot of
long after I'm gone there still be a lot of people who have
having a lot of great memories out on this field; that's fun to think about
truly an honor and privilege to get to do it; my whole team
is extremely proud of it
I'm particularly proud to be an alumni and be a part of it
Now we take a moment to visit with UNC Charlotte professor and best-selling
A.J. Hartley we learn more about his recent novel that reimagines that
Scottish play
the project originated
when I met David Hewson, the co-author
at Thrillerfest, which is a big
writers conference for for
thriller writers, obviously
The idea of taking
Shakespeare's stories
has a
story set specifically in medieval Scotland
but retelling it as a thriller
uh... and doing all the things that you can do in a novel that you can't do with a
stage play
well I don't think anybody had done that before and one of the things that we've
really wanted to do with the novel was make the battles and things
that you hear about in the play, because you don't really see much, there's a little at the end
but you don't see a lot of combat
all we wanted to really show that
and I have experience uh... because I write fantasy as well as thrillers
writing big
battles with swords in
horses and
and all of that kind of stuff, so
we immediately got excited about the idea
and uh... David had been talking to
the head of Audible
who has expressed interest in doing some original audio projects and when I heard
that it was going to be Alan Cumming of course i was uh... i was delighted
because um...
he is just a terrific talent
I love the idea that that what we do
what we have done here it is create
yet another iteration of the Macbeth story
uh... and so it
makes sense to me
the book itself has a kind of afterlife which goes beyond text the idea of
breaking it up and and and rethinking the script
for performance
so sort of
turning the play
returning the novel back into a play a very different kind so
that there's a an ongoing
re-imagining of the story that we have already
Thanks once again for joining us you can see more on the web on
inside u_n_ cc dot e_d_u_
and all of our segments are on YouTube
I the meantime, I look forward to seeing you next time on Inside UNC Charlotte