Senior Design Projects

ECS193 A/B Winter & Spring 2021

Standalone Application for Remote Psychophysics Experiments

Email **********
Name Wilsaan Joiner
Affiliation Department of Neurobiology, Physiology and Behavior; Department of Neurology

Project's details

Project title Standalone Application for Remote Psychophysics Experiments
Background Since the beginning of the current pandemic, departments across the sciences have scrambled to develop new protocols that allow researchers to continue their work in a safe and effective manner. Despite their best efforts, many fields that require human participants have remained largely inactive, unable to perform in-person studies. It is clear that alternate experimental setups are necessary. A web browser based, or standalone downloadable application that can be run on a participant’s personal computer would remove the need for in-person visits to conduct some studies. This could help enable critical scientific research to continue as well as provide opportunities to pursue studies previously not feasible for scale or accessibility reasons.
Description Students working on this project will design and implement a standalone application or browser based application that can be used to design and run basic psychophysics experiments. The tool will be used by the Joiner Lab to perform sensorimotor integration, motor adaptation, time perception, and other experiments. These experiments can involve scenarios including visuomotor disturbances (learning to control a cursor with altered dpi or altered x/y axis directions), stimulus detection/discrimination (which sound played for longer or what is the prominent direction of movement of individual dots in a cloud of moving dots), precision/accuracy training akin to an aim trainer, etc.
The application must:

(1) Be able to retrieve information about the system it is running on (i.e. mouse dpi, monitor resolution and refresh rate, if web-based network latency)

(2) Design basic psychophysics experiments [ex. (1) Point-to-point movements where location, size, duration, motion of targets can be defined by the experimenter a priori; audio and visual components should be options, [2] Obstacle Avoidance task where the subject must move around the screen to prevent collisions with moving or stationary objects, etc…] via GUI or code

(3) Record inputs in real time during the experiment (i.e. continually record cursor location and key presses)

(4) Have robust documentation
Students will be in contact with project client through weekly or bi-weekly meetings to discuss progress and receive guidance.
Deliverable (1) A working prototype of the application with at least one premade demo task

(2) Students must be able to walk project client through designing their own experiment

(3) Application must be sufficiently flexible such that additional controllable parameters can be added in the future (minimize hard coding)
Skill set desirable HTML, CSS, and Javascript (web development)
Phone number **********
Client time availability 30-60 min weekly or more
IP requirement Open source project
Attachment Click here
Selected No
Team members N/A