How we work

In order to make the research applications we develop with you as innovative as possible we seek to include the latest and most reliable web technologies in them.

Below you find a brief outline of some of the technologies we use and how we apply them in order to make the applications fit your research as efficiently as possible.

Front-End

Our front-end development (the part of our applications visible to web-users) is written in JavaScript – a programming language that every modern web-browser can ‘interpret’ and which powers the vast majority of interactive parts of the Internet (e.g. pop-ups, alerts, and games). In order to use JavaScript to its full potential, we use state-of-the-art libraries like jQuery, jQuery mobile, and AngularJS. As web-browsers like Google Chrome or Firefox become ever more powerful so does JavaScript (imagine the web-browser as the engine and JavaScript as the chassis).

We rely exclusively on research tasks that we have developed ourselves and have validated and tested thoroughly. This means that every project we begin with new researchers begins with a research idea from which we build the applicaiton ‘from scratch’. The application interfaces are written in common HTML5 and CSS3 as it allows our development team to provide the interface that is needed and most suited for your research.

Back-End

The output of all experimental tasks that we develop are the data.
We think the data are the essential product of every experiment and we therefore use safe and secure technologies that allow us to manage data as efficient as possible. The data are not just of importance to the researcher but also to the participants: we oblige to highest standards of privacy protection of participants’ data (e.g. IP addresses and participation codes). We exclusively work on projects that are reviewed by university ethics committees.

Enter node.js:

We are currently in rebuilding our back-end architecture towards node.js. With this we will be able to develop even more capable applications combining front-end and our back-end to make the research applications even more fluent. Alongside with node.js, we use Angular.js to create single-page applications for a range of novel experiments to come (applications that run without a single page refresh in the browser). The next experiments we develop applications for will thus benefit from more capability and a fascinating pace.
Particularly in large projects with massive data flows these technologies will be used to their full potential.

Simulation and unit testing:

Testing our products is essential for us. It allows us to improve and optimize our code. For example, by means of rigorous testing, we constantly further develop stimulus optimisation algorithms and front-to-back end communication. We have written our own simulation programmes that are able to test a range of scenarios as dummy participants.

Data delivery and server location:

Once the data are collected – be it in pilot studies or in the full experiments – we retrieve them from our server and transfer the raw output files to the researcher we worked with. We will discuss beforehand, how we deliver the data and in which format the data are provided. The location of our server is Amsterdam and we work with Site5 as developer-focused hosting service. 

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