Introduction

Tscope is a C/C++ library aimed at experiment programming. It was developed at the Department of Experimental Psychology of Ghent University, as a Windows 2000/XP replacement of the Dos-based Expstuff library. As a specialized experiment programming library, it is more flexible than experiment generation software, but also hides the complexities of the non-specialized C/C++ libraries it is based on. Tscope provides functions for graphics, sound, timing, randomization and response registration.

Installation

Tscope is based on three open source projects: the Cygwin gcc compiler, the Allegro game programming library, and the Crimson source editor. In the download section you'll find an installation package that bundles these three projects into a single Experiment Development Environment.

Graphics

The graphics subsystem provides Most of the graphics functions are based on Allegro functions.

Sound

The sound system can Like the graphics subsystem, the sound subsystem is based on Allegro functions.

Randomization

This part is a C implementation of Brysbaert's randomization procedures published in BRMIC. Highlights:

Timing and Response registration

This is the reason we started with the project. We were getting bored of going back to DOS to run our experiments, but easy-to-use, flexible and accurate Windows timers were not known to us. We made our own - based on the Win32 api, allegro (mouse/keyboard/joystick input), and Cygwin's ioperm library (game- and parallel port input). Features:

Linux version

Linux can be used as a development environment for Tscope programs. Every bug-free Tscope program that compiles on Windows will also compile on Linux, and vice versa. From version 168 onwards, Tscope programs can be run with above normal priority on Linux systems. This should make stimulus and response timing on Linux reasonably accurate. A separate section of the reference manual describes the functions that behave differently on Linux.

Mac OS X version

Mac can be used as a development environment for Tscope programs. Every bug-free Tscope program that compiles on Windows will also compile on Mac, and vice versa. On Mac, however, no accurate timing of stimuli and responses is possible. It is therefore not a good idea to use Mac for running experiments. A separate section of the reference manual describes the functions that behave differently on Mac.

Example programs

Example programs that clarify the usage of Tscope functions are available both on this site, and within the Tscope distribution. In addition to reading the reference manual, you can play around with these programs to get an understanding of how the Tscope functions work. After that you can start using the functions in your own programs.

User contributions

On the Tscope site, there is a directory tree with experiment-specific algorithms and full-blown experiments submitted by Tscope users. All users are encouraged to submit the fruit of their programming efforts to the authors. This way we can provide other users with as many examples as possible.


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