March 22, 2016
As detailed in the last two entries, a lot of time and planning has gone into designing the probe-centric aspects of the new SmartBox 2.0 software. The software is able to map NeuroNexus probes in real-time, and can do so for multiple probes recording simultaneously in different locations. This is all done to allow users to take full advantage of the spatial benefits of mult-channel microelectrode arrays with maximum convenience during experiments.
But when doing recordings, there are times when the focus needs to be purely on the streaming data. Do the waveforms look correct? Does the spike timing match-up with external cues? What does the activity look like over a longer time period?
For situations like this, the SmartBox 2.0 software allows the user to clear all status, configuration, and/or mapping information off the screen to more wholly focus on the streaming data itself. Consider the following screen shots:
In Figure 1, an example is shown in which two probes are connected into the first two ports on the SmartBox. The user has selected one channel from probe A and two channels from probe B as worthy of further interest. There are also two digital inputs plugged in as part of this experiment. One digital input might be the TTL pulse controlling a laser for optogenetics, and the other a TTL pulse generated by the animal accessing a feeder for a reward. Those two signals are shown in the central panel at the top of the screen, labeled as “DIN-00x,” where the “x” corresponds to the input channel on the SmartBox.
Figure 1: SmartBox 2.0 software with two probes implanted, displaying shared information from the probes in ports A and B.
In Figure 2, the same data is displayed, but with the configuration panel (left) minimized such that the data streams can take up both the center and left portions of the screen.
Figure 2: SmartBox 2.0 software with two probes implanted, displaying shared information from the probes in ports A and B across the full screen.
In Figure 3, we see the alternative approach, where the Probe Mapping Display panel (right) is minimized but the configuration panel is left open.
Figure 3: SmartBox 2.0 software with two probes implanted, displaying shared information from the probes in ports A and B across the full screen.
Finally, in Figure 4, we see the data streams in full screen mode, with both the configuration and the probe mapping panels minimized.
Figure 4: SmartBox 2.0 software with two probes implanted, displaying shared information from the probes in ports A and B across the full screen.
The SmartBox 2.0 software is designed to make life easier for those during neural recordings. This is just one example, but it helps illustrate that using the SmartBox to record from NeuroNexus probes will allow users to maximize the convenience, utility, and power of their neural data acquisition experiments.
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On the Blog:
The SmartBox 2.0 software integrates probe mapping into the recording user interface, providing extremely convenient spike identification during recording.