Virtual aquarium now live at the library

30-foot seascape explodes with color

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Have you caught a glimpse of the Patchogue-Medford Library at night lately? If not, you certainly should, as the window front now features the opportunity to immerse yourself in a 30-foot aquarium with fish, coral reef, and even sharks!

In addition to the “Ocean of Possibilities” virtual reality, the library is also providing the space for children and those children at heart to create their own unique design on one of eight different sea creatures, which will then be augmented and brought to life in an experience known as “augmented reality”: an enhanced version of the real physical world that is achieved through the use of digital visual elements, sound, or other sensory stimuli delivered via technology.

All you have to do is color a fish and the library staff will load it into one of the virtual aquariums, or you can do it yourself at one of the self-service kiosks in the Children’s Department. Also, those stopping by after-hours can pick up a fish from the box outside the front entrance. After you color the fish, snap a picture and email it to aquarium@pmlib.org.

“We strive to stay forward-thinking about technology in libraries, and I like to think outside the box while still engaging our with community,” said Laura Accardi, head of promotions and development at the library. “While working on the MoCA Lights project last year and learning from our friends at Patchogue Arts Council and North Stream, I could see how the projection process could open up the possibilities to bring this augmented reality experience to our front windows. Their talents and our library’s enthusiasm have been the perfect partnership! With this project, we were able to achieve science, technology, engineering, art, and math (also known as S.T.E.A.M.), while still promoting summer reading!”

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