On Thursday 18 August, the old colorful button boxes have been replaced with the new USB Beexybox type of button box in most of the labs. The use of the new button boxes requires the latest version of Linux we installed for you: in the purple boot menu shown by the computers when starting up, simple select “Linux OS (New BeexyBox) [Ubuntu 12.04]” now instead of “Real-time Linux OS (Old ButtonBox) [Ubuntu 12.04]” (this option should be selected by default on all experiment machines that use the new button boxes)
The old button boxes have been removed, because we are in the progress of terminating support for them. If you still have an ongoing experiment which requires the use of the old button boxes for consistent measurements, please stop by and have a talk with us. If your ZEP experiment still uses the old button boxes, we can adept your experiment for you to use the new Beexy box instead. If the use of the old button boxes is absolutely vital, we will be able to lend you an old button box, but we are terminating support for the old button boxes very soon, so this can only be used to finish currently ongoing experiments.
The new Beexyboxes have several advantages, making us confident the old button boxes are no longer required:
- The button boxes work with USB, meaning they can just as easily be used on the computers in our lab, as on one of our laptops. This increases the consistency of experiments that rely on the button boxes to measure response.
- Computers that have the proper connections for the old button boxes are no longer made, and making the changes necessary becomes increasingly hard, so this way, we’re future proof!
- Due to their new design, the Beexyboxes are more comfortable to use than the old button boxes.
The labs that now have the new Beexyboxes are:
We also prepared the connections for the Beexyboxes in the Baby lab and in the EEG lab, but we did not remove the already present button boxes just yet, so you can keep running your experiments there the way you’re used to. Should you want to use a Beexybox instead of a button box, please stop by, so we can provide you with one and give you some instructions on how to use it.
- Running an experiment involving the adult participant database is not recommended in summer since a lot of students are simply not in Utrecht then, so recruitment is rather difficult. If you want to try anyway, please contact Iris Mulders before Wednesday July 6.
- The lab will be closed August 15-18 because the UIT-dagen are unbearably noisy and make it impossible to get to Janskerkhof 13. No lab support will be available on these days.
- The rest of the summer, there will be lab support in room 0.09, but we may miss a day here or there due to support staff vacations. If you absolutely need support on a certain day, check in advance via firstname.lastname@example.org.
- From July 18 until August 12 the building will be closed, but someone will be available to open the door if you ring the door bell.
- Update: between Monday July 18 until Friday August 19 the building will close at 19h on weekdays, rather than at 22h.
This morning the UiL OTS Website has had a make over. We installed a new theme to the website, to bring the website back in line with all UU websites. But don’t worry, we changed only the appearance!
All the information should still be available on the website, right where you used to find it. If you notice anything wrong, please contact us at email@example.com.
Because of Liberation day and a ‘bridge’ day the laboratory will be closed on Thursday the 5th and Friday the 6th of May. Our apologies for any inconvenience but we hope you will enjoy your freedom and the projected sunny weather!
The CGN contains a large selection of annotated recording of the Dutch language. The CGN has been updated to version two and has been installed in a new location. The previous and incomplete version will be removed shortly. You can read how to access the new version here.
Yesterday evening some security issues on Windows have been revealed. This means we have to apply a security patch. All Linux systems are not affected by the patch, so no problems are expected for people working on a Linux system. The consequences are downtime for the following services on Friday 15th between 16:00 and 17:00 hour.
You won’t be able to use the computation server, better know as “rekenserver” and all the disks related to the lab:
IT-system maintenance is planned for Tuesday the 22nd of March. Logging in on Linux OS is not advised whereas Windows OS will work fine. Be advised that accessing the project folders may be difficult during this day. To prevent any experiments being ruined we have preemptively booked all UiL OTS laboratories. However, the laboratories will still be physically accessible.
If you have any questions feel free to contact us.
Six USB drives are newly available for lending. They come in 32GB are 64GB variants and can be borrowed from room 0.09. Availability of the drives is shown in the reservation system.
When transporting sensitive data we advise to use an encrypted archive format. This prevents privacy leaks and related corporal punishment. We are joking about the punishments but are quite serious about preventing leaks!
Note: the small update has now been deployed throughout the lab.
A new small update has been applied to the computers in K06 and will carefully be deployed to the other systems in the course of the coming week. Below a small overview of changes:
- Number of boot options are reduced to three:
- “Windows OS [MS Windows 7]”
- “Real-time Linux OS (Old ButtonBox) [Ubuntu 12.04]”
- “Linux OS (New BeexyBox) [Ubuntu 12.04]”
- Note that there are now two Linux versions: one for the old ButtonBox and one for the new BeexyBox; choose wisely
- Default boot option is now Windows OS for those systems that almost never boot into Linux (i.e.K06 and K04)
- Zep version 1.12.1 (with BeexyBox button-box support) has been installed
- Symbolic links on the Desktop of projects, projects-2, and dataexchange received a make-over
- A new “reset-desktop” script has been added to the desktop in order to reset your personal user interface in case of corruption or strange settings
- During Linux boot the update system now prints status updates (press F1 during ‘Ubuntu’ splash)
- The UiL-OTS update system now prevents users to login via GUI until the system has finished updating
- Monitors should now stop going into standby (we pray)
- Removed old printers and added a follow-me-COLOUR printer. Grayscale printing is currently not possible under the Linux OS
- General canonical Ubuntu updates have been deployed
- System time is now being synced with a central NTP server (was not being synced)
On Thursday January 21 and Friday January 22, a dormer (dakkapel) rooftop will be replaced on the garden side of Janskerhof 13. Noise associated with this is expected to be limited, and should certainly not be a problem for testing in K.10 and K.12. The expectation is that it should be fine to test in the other labs as well, but it’s hard to tell in advance. If you want to be absolutely sure that you don’t run into problems, don’t schedule participants for these days.
- testing after 16h on weekdays is always safe;
- testing on weekends is safe.
- you can only enter the building after 17h and on weekends if you have an XS card (employees only).
The remainder of this week, week 47 (Nov 18-20), and next week, week 48 (Nov 23-27) :
All this time there will be periodic CLANG CLANG CLANG noises from the remaining scaffolding being taken down, as well as assorted other building noises. This noise will not permeate into the sound-attenuated booths. There should be no drilling after 9 am.
=> Hard to tell if the CLANG CLANG CLANG or other noises will permeate into K.03A. To be on the safe side, probably a better idea to not test in K.03A on weekdays before 16h.
=> Testing in the booths in K.10 or K.12 should be OK during this week, in the sense that participants won’t hear the CLANG CLANG CLANG. For experiment leaders it may be less pleasant, but probably still bearable. There should be no drilling that penetrates into the participant booths, but if you hear some anyway, contact Maarten immediately (room 0.09/phone 030-253 9102).
The current planning is that the construction works will be finished by November 30. Of course we cannot be sure yet that they’ll make that date, but right now it looks like they will. Yay!
The past few weeks, some computers (especially the phonetics lab) have been disconnected from the network, to bypass certain problems, which we are working on to solve permanently. This meant that some people were unable to login to the computers.
From now on, the computers have to be connected to the network by default, meaning logging in using your Solis-ID will once again be possible. Users who want to make use of a local account in order to be sure of fully functioning computers now have to disconnect and afterwards reconnect the computers from the internet themselves.
Read why and how to do this in the how to Work on a local account
The Baby lab team temporarily works in another building, until the construction work at Janskerkhof is finished.
You can find us at Kromme Nieuwe Gracht 46, first floor.
Maartje de Klerk and Ao Chen: room 1.10
Şule Kurtcebe and Cora Pots: room 1.08
Baby lab interns Floor Simons and Karlijn Kouwer: room 1.07b.
The university has launched a new website that focuses on good practice in research-data management. While the UiL-OTS lab does provide its own data storage it is good to be familiar with this multidisciplinary initiative that can provide tips, tools, technologies and advice on long term-preservation for your research data, while facilitating its discovery and citation. We think this is a worthwhile read! – Lab Management
This (2015-10-02) and next Friday (2015-10-09) construction work will focus on removing the brick mortar in the outer walls of the lab building (Janskerkhof 13/13a). We cannot say the mortar removal will sound anywhere as nice as a great rock concert but it’ll likely sound as loud. The expected noise will make it improbible to perform reliable experiments. We recommend to steer clear of the lab this and next Friday. -Lab. Management
Update (4 sept 2015): SPSS version 23 is now available on the computers in K.09
Dear lab-users that are keen on analysing their data. We were just informed that licence for the old versions of SPSS (statistical-analysis software) has ran out. We are making haste with plans to enable the new version(s) SPSS (22 and 23).
Our apologies for any inconveniences!
The ‘Utrechtse IntroductieTijd‘ (UIT) will be happening this week (10-14 August). This event on the Janskerkhof will generate so much inconvenience for the lab that the lab is closed for most purposes during this period. Technical support can still be contacted but will be off site.
Futhermore, from today onward and lasting for several months there will be building maintenance. This will mainly affect the outside and top of the building and only should be very limited in the basement. We are in close communication with the workers to minimize the inconveniences during the maintenance. However, if you do find your research disrupted or have any complaints please post them to Chris so he can take any action if need be.
Effective immediately and until the 17th of August the entrance to the Janskerkhof 13/13a building is closed and can only be opened from the outside via an authorised access card. If you are not a staff member, then you can enter the building by ringing the doorbell. A freshly appointed doorman will open the door for you. The doorman is present from 9:00 until 17:00. If your experiment requires you to have access before or after this time period please contact the lab. management and we might be able to arrange a temporary access card.
The reason behind this closure are the recent unfortunate incidents with intruders and stolen objects. We kindly but firmly request you to help the cause by NOT allowing shady characters to enter the building alongside with you.
Update 4 – Summer time in the lab – renovation work, events, building closes early in the evenings, and other impediments
- Extensive renovation and construction work is being planned for Janskerkhof 13 for
July and AugustAugust till September/November. Some of the building activities will necessitate us to close the lab altogether, but we don’t know when exactly, or for how long. We have indicated that closing the lab for more than one week at a time is not possible for us, and we’ve been assured that we will be closely involved in the planning. Planning will happen at the end of July.
- If you want to run an experiment involving the adult participant database (not recommended in summer since a lot of students are simply not in Utrecht then), please contact Iris Mulders before July 8.
- From July 13 until August 22 the building will close at 19h, rather than 22h.
- The lab will be closed August 10-13 because the UIT-dagen are unbearably noisy and make it impossible to get to Janskerkhof 13. No lab support will be available on these days.
- The rest of the summer, there will be lab support in room 0.09 (in as far as the renovation activities will allow), but we may miss a day here or there due to support staff vacations. If you absolutely need support on a certain day, check in advance via firstname.lastname@example.org.
Friday 10 July at 14:30 another update will take place. Again, this should not be noticable for any users, but to be safe, we have blocked all the labs after 14:30 this friday. People working in K.06 are adviced not to do time sensitive experiments there. You will not lose anything, but timing may be inaccurate during the update process
In the morning of Monday 6 July, some maintenance is planned for the computer systems that we use in the lab.
We expect to get through this without any difficulty, but there is always a small chance something might go wrong. This means that in some cases, it is possible the computers will freeze multiple times for a while, or even that logging in to your account is not possible.
As said, this maintenance is planned for the morning of 6 July, but could be postponed until later that week. Unfortunately, we cannot be more precise at the moment, as we are dependent on information from other devisions within the university.
Should you encounter any of the above described problems, or notice other hiccups in the performance of the computers in the lab, do not hesitate to inform the technical support in room 0.09 immediately. The sooner we know of any trouble, the sooner it can be solved.
Due to FEP not having been updated in nearly 15 years and Zep being an improvement in almost all ways, support for FEP will be deprecated. This means that we will support existing experiments, in particular those that need to collect additional data and thus must use the same framework. New experiment requests which entail the modification of FEP scripts will generally be rebuilt in Zep however.
In the coming weeks the PCs in the labs will be replaced with newer models, these systems will not support running FEP, however old models will be kept available as reserves and can be put in place should such experiments need to be run, however it is very important that you contact the lab staff at least 1 week in advance of running a FEP script so that we can make the necessary preparations.
If you have any questions not answered above feel free to contact us.
A new update of the ZEP starting script has been released. UiL-OTS lab users are recommended to use this new linux-terminal-local-UILOTS.sh in order to start a terminal prior to calling Zep (right-click>Save Link As…). Please replace the linux-terminal.sh file with this new version. If you are running an old Zep script (version 0.x) and do not have a linux-terminal.sh you can ignore any this updated version. Downloading the file automatically prevents you from executing it: a safety feature for the big bad internet. To re-enable execution of the file right click it >> properties >> Permissions and tick the box that reads ‘Allow executing file as program’. With this you are ready to go!
The newest version now makes a (partial) local copy on ‘/data’ instead at ‘/var’ because of storage capacity. Because of decreased performance of the file server that holds the project maps (M: drive) running an experiment directly from a project map might lead to timing issues or errors. These errors are visible in the terminal when running an experiment. To ensure that script performance is not affected by the slacking file server the linux-terminal.sh is to be replaced. Note that this is only relevant when Zep experiments are performed in the UiL-OTS lab facilities. For other instances the normal linux-terminal.sh suffices.
For the past month the hardware for the printer in room K06 (the room with a lot of computers) has been failing regularly. To aid users in printing it is now possible to select an alternative printer. Under Windows OS the new printer is named ‘GW_JHK13_Medewerker_006‘ and it is physically located in 0.08; the room is upstairs and is next to the lab. support staff room. Please limit your use of this secondary printer as much as possible.
It is still not possible to print from under the Linux OS. We are actively investigating a solution and are sorry for possible inconveniences.
The last few days we have done our best to upgrade the site, make it more accessible and above all give it a more intuitive flow.
A few people have come to us to explain the articles new lab users have to read, were somewhat unclear and contained a lot of double information.
We have completely restructured those pages, trying to make them more clear, easier to oversee and less redundant.
If you have some advice about how we could do even better, or remarks about the new structure, please contact Jan de Mooij and let him know. We would very much appreciate it.
Tomorrow, 18 July 2014, this website will be down for (hopefully short) maintenance. We will then upgrade the website to a new template. We apologize for the inconvenience.
Update: Maintenance is still continuing, but all pages should be accessible again. Please let us know if you think something’s missing/not working!
UiL-OTS lab users are recommended to use linux-terminal-local-UILOTS.sh in order to start a terminal prior to calling Zep (right-click>Save Link As…). Please replace the linux-terminal.sh file with this new version. If you are running an old Zep script (version 0.) and do not have a linux-terminal.sh you can ignore any this updated version. Downloading the file automatically prevents you from executing it: a safety feature for the big bad internet. To re-enable execution of the file right click it >> properties >> Permissions and tick the box that reads ‘Allow executing file as program’. With this you are ready to go!
DETAILS: Because of decreased performance of the file server that holds the project maps (M: drive) running an experiment directly from a project map might lead to timing issues or errors. These errors are visible in the terminal when running an experiment. To ensure that script performance is not affected by the slacking file server the linux-terminal.sh is to be replaced. Note that this is only relevant when Zep experiments are performed in the UiL-OTS lab facilities. For other instances the normal linux-terminal.sh suffices.
Summer is almost here! If you are planning to work in the lab during the summer, please take note of the following:
- If you want to run an experiment involving the adult participant database (not particularly recommended in summer), please contact Iris Mulders before July 10.
- The lab will be closed August 11-14 because the UIT-dagen are unbearably noisy and make it impossible to get to Janskerkhof 13. No lab support will be available on these days.
- The rest of the summer, there will be lab support in room 0.09, but we may miss a day here or there due to support staff vacations. If you absolutely need support on a certain day, check in advance via email@example.com.
- Update: On weekdays from July 21-August 17, the building will close at 19h. See faculty newsletter.
We’ve added some new LimeSurvey manuals to our how-to section. There’s four in total now:
- LimeSurvey for linguists, a general introduction
- Audio in LimeSurvey, on having audio as stimuli
- Postprocessing LimeSurvey results, on a script to postprocess your survey results.
If you happen to have a request for a manual or a question about LimeSurvey, please do send lab support a mail (after consoling the how-tos of course ;)).
The audio systems in K.06 have all been fixed. On all computers audio is working again, which means you should be able to play back audio from your computer and record audio from now on.
If you still encounter a problem, please notify lab support in room 0.09
A lot of the research done in the UiL-OTS lab. involves the usage of sound stimuli. To control for sound interference some of the labs have been made sound proof. However, to further reduce the noise I’ve added some padding on the hallway doors.
We are also going to hang up signs that signal for silence in the hallway next to the lab. This is to prevent voluminous talking right next to the lab. doors but feel free to have chat in other hallways.
All faculty buildings, including the lab, will be closed on the following days:
- Friday 18 April (Good Friday)
- Sunday 20 April
- Monday 21 April
- Saturday 26 April
- Monday 5 May
- Thursday 29 May (Ascension Day)
- Friday 30 May (‘balance day’, i.e. obligatory leave day)
- Sunday 8 June
- Monday 9 June
It is already in the lab rules but apparently bears repeating: Do Not Rewire Anything. Ever.
Several of the wiring configurations in the phonetics lab have been modified in various nonsensical ways, and not even restored to their original configuration plus a few cables were apparently nicked to boot. If you require a different configuration or the setup does not work as you expect please come to room 0.09 and ask one of the lab support staff for assistance. That’s why we are here!
The lab staff will be attending EMLAR X from April 14th to 16th. In this period there will be limited to no support for the lab facilities, so make sure you either catch us before or after the conference. If you’re planning to attend EMLAR as well (highly recommended!), we’ll see you there!
Stop by during normal business hours to retrieve your phone.
Update March 5: phone retrieved! 🙂
FYI: Martijn will not be present next Wednesday, but will be on Monday.
Alex Manus will not be present next Wednesday but will be available the following Friday.
It is no longer possible to print from local accounts (such as those used on the lab computers, not K.06) due to ‘improvements’ in the printing infrastructure at the university. There does not seem to be a resolution for this but we will continue to investigate.
It may be possible to resolve the issues under Linux and I am currently trying to find a solution.
As you may have noticed, on the computers in flexplek in Janskerkhof 13 (and maybe on other computers too), the M drive where your project folders are has been replaced by ‘migratieschijf’, and ‘migratieschijf’ is empty. To get access to your project folders, follow the steps:
- Start Windows Explorer or double-click ‘My Computer’,
- Right click on ‘migratieschijf’,
- Select ‘disconnect’, and wait until ‘migratieschijf’ disappears.
- In the menu bar, choose ‘Tools’ -> ‘Map network drive’.
- In the dialog window that appears, click on the arrow on the right side, and select the letter ‘M’. (Do not choose any other letter).
- At ‘Folder’, type
- Click on ‘Finish’. A new Explorer window will appear, showing the contents of the K drive.
Dutch Vpro-Tv science program ‘Labyrint’ made an episode on Dutch & Flemish language and corpus, and had a short interview with prof. dr. Jos van Berkum, at the UiL OTS EEG lab. It also features prof. dr. Norbert Corver. You can view the episode here, or here , or here(local mirror).
We removed the microwave from the kitchen in the basement, because:
- The smells of hot food during the day gives a very unprofessional impression to the (parents of infant) participants in our experiments
- Mice and cockroaches like crumbs
- Computers don’t like crumbs
There is a microwave in the kitchen on the ground floor that you can use; please do all your eating upstairs, not in the lab.
After scheduled maintenance by ITS on Wednesday, the printer in K.06 was unavailable for most users. Our colleagues at ICT&Media have performed an update to the printer settings on all PC’s, and the printer should now be reachable again. If you still encounter problems, reboot your computer, try again, and if the problem then persists, contact us at room 0.09 in Janskerkhof 13, do not call 5600 (Facilitair Service Centrum).
For the usual printer problems (like toner replacement, paper jam, PC LOAD LETTER etc.) please let us know at room 0.09 in Janskerkhof 13, do not call 5600 (Facilitair Service Centrum). We’ll either forward the problem to them or will ask ICT&Media to come up with a solution.
We’ve now added the experiment repository to our website. We’ve reviewed the old repository, made some changes and added some custom-made experiments. We hope the new structure will help you to easily find a template that is suitable for your experiment (e.g. by using the search page). If you would like your experiment to be added, or have suggestions to improve the repository, please drop us an e-mail!
The manual for Fixation has been transferred from the old website to the how-to section. You can find it here. This sort-of marks the end of life of the old website: almost all content has been transferred now and will only be kept up-to-date on this new site. If you still find something’s missing, please drop us a mail (or comment here!).
We’ve noticed that in K.06 some of the mice and keyboards were either stolen or unplugged. Please be kindly reminded that you should never unplug lab equipment, ever, as is clearly stated in the house rules. Also know that the lab staff in 0.09 has equipment for loan if you forgot to bring your own. Follow-up reminders won’t be so friendly.
As you probably will have noticed, this is the new website for the UiL OTS labs. With this new site, we’re hoping that we’re able to reach two goals: a better showcase of our facilities and a clearer overview of how-tos and boilerplate experiments for our users.
We’re slowly moving content from the old site to the new site, so keep an eye on us! If you have ideas or content for the new website, don’t hesitate to contact the lab staff!
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