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A new Question & Answer forum and an attempt to create momentum..

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    Pepijn Van De Ven

    Dear all,

    Creation of the new forum digest functionality is nearing completion, which is a good moment to publicise the existence of the ISRII forum to our members. To improve the usefulness of the forum, I have added a Question & Answer forum.

    To (hopefully) kick off activity on this forum, I thought it might be a good idea to generate some questions. For this, I would like to suggest each board member generates three questions and answers and identifies another board/ISRII member who might be interested in ‘asking’ this question. The next stage would be for this member to submit this question to the forum after which you can show off your expertise and provide the answer you had already formalised. For example, for myself I could think of the following questions:

    Q1. How can I use technology to objectively measure sleep quality (asked by Viktor)
    A. Well Viktor, you could use mobile technologies. There are various apps that purport to measure sleep quality directly on a mobile phone and these typically look at vibration or movement picked up by the phone’s accelerometers from tossing and turning. To my knowledge these have not been validated, but they may certainly be a good starting point! It is also worth looking at bracelets that could measure movement of the user’s arm and in the past pressure sensors mounted under the legs of the bed have also been used. The latter may not be as practical as they require some modifications to the user’s bed. Etc.etc. etc. Please see the attached paper for a review of …

    Q2. I want to make an app for iPhone and Android. Do I need to make two separate versions of the same app? (asked by Frances)
    A. Hi Frances, there are various platforms that can be used to create apps that can run on multiple devices. A popular platform is https://cordova.apache.org/ (previously known as PhoneGap) and this link http://thinkapps.com/blog/development/develop-for-ios-v-android-cross-platform-tools/ lists a few others. When using these types of solutions, it is important to realise you may not get access to all the functionality provided by the original platform (iOS or Android). As a good rule of thumb: any app that will mainly present information (text, audio, video) can be implemented cross-platform and also for games (including augmented reality with e.g. unity https://unity3d.com) it is certainly a good solution. However, if you want to use, for example, sensors on a mobile device, you may run into limitations.

    Q3. I want to make my Android app available to a group of patients but do not want the app to be available to other users. Can I still use GooglePlay? (asked by Heleen)
    A. Hi Heleen, yes, that is possible. Google Play offers the ability to set up users as ‘Alpha’ and ‘Beta’ testers. Alpha testing is used for very early testing and the emphasis is on whether your app works. Beta testing is normally used with real end users and focusses on identifying usability issues and final validation. What you could do is list all your users as Beta users. They will then automatically receive the version of the app that you upload for Beta testing. If there is no version of the app available for ‘Production’ (i.e. the whole wide world), your app will not be visible to anyone but your testers. A limitation of this approach is that every user will need to be manually added to a list of beta users. You can also use a special Google facility to distribute apps to specific people (https://support.google.com/a/answer/2494992?hl=en) , but this uses a paid Google service: https://gsuite.google.com/intl/en/pricing.html. As a last suggestion: you can of course protect your app with a username / password combination. The app will be visible to all users, but they will not be able to enter the app.

    Do you think this is a worthwhile attempt to create some traffic to the forum and promote the forum as a repository of shared knowledge? And would you be willing to contribute with a few questions?

    Best wishes,


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