Getting Started with iTrace Core v0.1.0

Basic Usage

  1. Select a tracker
  2. Setup a tracking session
  3. Connect a plugin
  4. Calibrate the selected tracker
  5. Start tracking with iTrace Core
  6. When the tracking session is complete stop tracking with iTrace Core
  7. Finish data collection (no additional tracking sessions needed) by disconnecting the plugin

Windows Display Configuration

Before you begin using iTrace Core, you will need to ensure that the display the participant will be using is set as the Primary Display in Windows.

Selecting a Tracker

If you are using a supported Tobii tracker, iTrace Core will automatically detect the tracker if it is connected to your computer when the application is started. GazePoint Trackers must have the tracker connected to the PC and have the GazePoint Control Application running. If you have not yet connected a tracker before starting iTrace Core, you can setup your tracker and the click the refresh button to re-scan for trackers. When you have found your tracker, simply select it from the dropdown list. If you are using a Gazepoint tracker DO NOT close the GazePoint Control Application program until iTrace Core is closed.

Setup a Tracking Session

To setup a tracking session you can click Session Setup. This will allow you to name the task the participant will be working on (or simply record the name of the study being performed), provide the name of the researcher administering the study, record the anonymous ID of the participant, and select the output path for your data (XML files from both the Core and Plugins). When finished simply hit Save. The Clear button will empty all the data fields and restore the output directory to the default path (the Desktop).

Connecting a Plugin

By default, the Core will start a socket and web socket server for plugin communication on socket 8008 and 7007 respectively. If these sockets are not already in use on your workstation, connecting a plugin simply requires using the connect buttons provided by the plugins for Eclipse or Visual Studio 2017 (only plugin versions 0.1.0 are supported with this release). If you need to change the ports, you can use the settings tab on the core to change either of the socket server ports. Valid socket port values are between 1025 and 65535. Keep in mind if you change the ports for iTrace Core, you will also need to change the settings to match on the plugin as well. The Core will need to be restarted to reflect the new sock port values.

Calibrate a Tracker

Before starting a recording session, you should calibrate your selected tracker (the mouse tracker does not require any calibration). Simply click Calibrate to start calibration for your chosen tracker.

Tracker Calibration Details

Tobii

For Tobii trackers a calibration screen provided by iTrace Core will appear providing a randomized nine point calibration. When calibration is complete, the results are shown and pressing any key or clicking the mouse will close the window. iTrace Core does not provide any additional calibration settings.

Gazepoint

Gazepoint trackers provide their own calibration via the Gazepoint Control Application which needs to be running to communicate with iTrace Core. When calibration is taking place with the Gazepoint DO NOT click the mouse. This will cause calibration to terminate early and will cause communication issues between the Gazepoint tracker and the iTrace Core. Calibration is finished when the results are displayed. At this time it is safe to close the Window by clicking the mouse.

By default, the Gazepoint uses a 5 point non-randomized calibration. This can be changed using the calibration button found on the Gazepoint Control Application (not on iTrace Core). The options are displayed on the results screen and are activated using the keyboard. One option allows for the number of calibration points to be changed to use 9 points (also non-randomized). Additional options are described in the Gazepoint Control.pdf installed alongside the Gazepoint Control Application on your workstation. Changes to these settings will be persistent for future calibration using the Gazepoint Control Application and iTrace Core. It is important to note that these options will also be visible after running a calibration from iTrace Core, however the Gazepoint Control Application does NOT allow them to be changed at that time. All settings changes must be done using the Gazepoint Control Application.

Start Tracking with the Core

When you are ready to collect eye tracking data from a participant, click Start Tracking to start reading data from the eye tracker and transmitting data to the plugin. When using a Gazepoint tracker it is important to NOT close the Gazepoint Control Application until tracking is stopped.

Ending a Tracking Session

When a tracking session is complete. Simply click Stop Tracking on the Core to stop the tracker and end the tracking session. Data transmission to the plugin will also cease, but the plugin will remain connected to allow for starting a new tracking session.

Finishing Data Collection

When all recording sessions are complete, ensure that iTrace Core is stopped and then disconnect the plugin. This step is VERY important as closing a tracking application without first disconnecting the plugin will produce incomplete data output from the plugin.

Other Features

  • If you would like to record the screen the participant is using, you can check the Enable Screen Recording box before clicking Start Tracking. Just like with tracking, the screen recorder only captures for the display set to Primary Display in Windows.
  • A window for monitoring the real-time status of the users eyes can be displayed by clicking Show Eye Status before clicking Start Tracking.
  • The Core also supports displaying a real-time on screen reticle (usually for testing or demonstration purposes) which can be enabled by clicking Show Reticle before clicking Start Tracking.