Software Development and Other Projects

One of the most recent and exciting projects completed was creating an online discussion board available for the VSRC members to quickly and easily share information. The discussion board can be accessed at the link by all authorized users. The system was developed in collaboration with the Information Management and Communications dept. using MS SharePoint. The site requires users to log in using blazerID.

One of the actively supported projects and frequently updated projects is ZStim - the fully-integrated software system that was developed for whole-cell patch-clamp recordings experiments performed on rabbit retina in vitro

Programming Languages and Programming Environments used and available

System Design Platform LabVIEW   Labview-logo
Numerical Computing Matlab  Matlab_Logo  and Phychtoolbox
Scripting Languages and Web PHP  php-logo , JavaScript  JavaScriptLogo2
Lower Level Languages C/C++, Java  Java_Logo
API Development Java 3D, Adobe Flash  adobe-flash
Other Joomla!  Joomla_logo , SQL   

LabVIEW (Laboratory Visual Instrumentation Engineering Workbench) - platform and programming environment developed by National Instruments. LabVIEW was used by the Computer Module to develop few fully-integrated software systems for whole-cell patch-clamp recordings experiments on retinal cells in vitro. Few systems (ZStim is one of them) developed are used in laboratories of Dr. Kraft, Dr. Keyser, Dr. Amthor, and will be used in laboratory of Dr. Gawne for recording from single neurons and groups of neurons in visual cortex in vivo.

Matlab is a computing environment developed by MathWorks. Psychtoolbox is a set of Matlab functions developed for creating and displaying images and animations on computer monitor as visual stimuli. Few software systems created by the Computer Module were developed using LabVIEW and Matlab and used in labs of Dr. Keyser and Dr. Amthor. One system that was developed in Matlab for lab of Dr. Visscher displays visual stimuli and controls eye tracker during psychophysical experiments on human subjects.

PHP is a server side scripting language for web development. The latest web program developed in PHP was the Advanced Search for Publications that can be found at http://www.uab.edu/vsrc/members/58-advanced-search. The system allows search for publications of multiple authors in collaboration with UAB for selected period of time.

The instrumentation schedulers that were configured and are supported by the Computer Module and used by Flow Cytometry Core Facility and VSRC Ocular Phenotyping and Molecular Analysis Module are open source PHP programs that are although rarely, have to be modified to fit the needs of users.

Java3D and Adobe Flash. The only web API developed using Java3D and Flash is the demonstration of rotating cubes for Dr. A. Dobbins and can be viewed at http://www.vsrc.uab.edu/adobbins. (Adobe Flash Player has to be installed for the web browser). I must say that it was one my favorite projects. The display is fully interactive, and following instructions written under the animation screen, user can change number of cubes, speed of rotation, tilt and rotation axis. You may have to click on the display before using the controls.

Joomla! is a content management framework for WWW and was used to develop the VSRC web site http://www.uab.edu/vsrc and the very page you are viewing right now.

SQL is used in all PHP programs the Computer Module developed and/or supports