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An Easy Way To Import, Export And Backup Tobii Studio Projects September 13, 2009

Posted by Jon Ward in eye tracking, Studio, Tips And Tricks.

We have had a few people ask us to expand on how to use the new LINK function for importing Tobii Studio projects, which first appeared in Studio 1.5 and is onboard still in 2.0.

One of the biggest frustrations with Studio users is the amount of time it can take to export a large test, the issues you can have with ensuring your hard drive is formatted to accept files of that size and also the amount off HDD space they can take up. In addition to this if you have an error on your hard disk you risk the NAS file being corrupted and losing all your work (or your backup).

With Studio 1.5 Tobii altered they way the files are saved and located on the drive and you can now see in the PROJECT menu, the location of the project on your hard drive – and you can also specify this to suit your personal requirements. This is usually something like C:Document/Tobii Studio Projects by default.

So how does the new system help you? Firstly you can copy the files easily by dragging and dropping to a back up drive, USB stick or similar. As the files are copied individually there is no problems with hitting the thresholds of FAT32 formatting meaning no need to worry about reformatting drives to suit. Thirdly, if you have an error on your drive you may only lose one or two files – and therefore not all your test which is a bonus! And as you can copy and paste, or drag the files across you don’t have to sit through a long export procedure!

So how do you quickly export / import projects…

Exporting : If you want to move a project from one machine to another to back it up, simply locate the folder (use the PROJECT menu to see the root directory) then copy and paste or drag and drop the files to your USB drive, external hard drive, network storage or similar.

Importing : When you have copied the files across to the machine you want to import the data to, make a note of where you have stored the files and open Studio. On the PROJECT menu you need to click on the LINK PROJECT icon and then use the BROWSE function to find your folder. Click on the folder to open it and you will see a database file (in DB3 format). Select this file and Studio should link the project for you. Much quicker than the old export / import function!

Limitations : Ok, there had to be a down side – but its a small one! If you are collecting data from maybe two different sources / trackers, or you are adding extra recording to an existing project you can only use the quick function for the first set of data. For the second set you will need to export and import as normal so that Studio will merge the projects together.

Hope you find that useful – I know it has saved us a huge amount of time and means that managing backups and archive data is much simpler.

As always – any questions or comments feel free to contact us via sales@acuity-ets.com


1. James Breeze - September 20, 2009

Hey Jon,
Can you think of an faster way to export videos from Studio at the end of a product. Say you have to export 20 in a row and put them on a DVD for clients?

2. Jon Ward - September 20, 2009

James, there are couple of ways of doing this depending on what you are trying to do.

If you use the export function in the REPLAY stage of Studio you can do a batch export of all the participants for either the current test or the entire project. You can also export just a specific part of the timeline (although on a batch export this will apply the same section of the timeline to all the recordings).

The other way of doing it – if you just wanted to highlight ‘left mouse clicks’ or interaction with a certain pop-ups, webpages and the like – if to use the LOGGING tool and mark the sections of the timeline you want to export, for each participant. Once these are all flagged (we recommend using a START and STOP labelled flag) you can use the AUTO GENERATE segments function in Studio to create all the clips (there can be multiple segments per participant, per test, per project, if you wish) and then use the batch export tool again as above. Studio will export each participants recordings into a seperate folder.

You can then use something like Windows Movie Maker to put them into a single timeline if you wish, add titles and so on.

If you are unsure on how to use the LOGGING or SCENE / SEGMENT tools search the HELP function in Studio, and I’ll try to create a basic how to guide in the coming weeks!

Shira - July 8, 2010

Thanks for the tips!

Is there also a fast way to batch export all existing heat maps and gaze plots?

Scott Hodgins - July 8, 2010

Hi Shira,

The easiest way is simply to right click on the current visualisation and “save as” for individual outputs as you go along. There isn’t an option to batch process.

Best, Scott.

Jon Ward - July 8, 2010

Hi Shira,

There is a quick way to batch export results for a variety of ‘users’ for example male, female, regular users etc – if you define filter groups using either the INDEPENDANT VARIABLES function, or questions in the QUESTIONNAIRE element you can then batch export visualisations for each of these groups. Utilise the EXPORT and BATCH EXPORT function.


3. Shira - July 8, 2010

Thanks for you rapid reply, Scott!

4. Shira - July 8, 2010

Hi Jon,
Can I do this after I did the recordings (without a questionaire)?
That is, add this capability to an existing project?

5. Jon Ward - July 8, 2010

Hi Shira,

Yes you can… if you have collected demographic data, assigned types of behaviour, completion rates or whatever then you can assign values to all participants as you wish.

Go to the TOOLS menu and select INDEPENDANT VARIABLES. Here you can assign questions with multiple choice variables (for example GENDER – options MALE / FEMALE) and so on.

You can then go to TOOLS, PARTICIPANTS, MANAGE PARTICIPANTS and click on each participant to ‘answer’ the questions for them.

Once all your participants have their details filled in you can then create filter groups in the VISUALISATION stage of the software. This is in the RECORDINGS box, where it says FILTER BY you can then create AND/OR statements to create filter groups.

Once this is done you can go to EXPORT, BATCH EXPORT and then do bulk exports of visuals across one or many groups, and one or many stimuli.


6. Shira - July 8, 2010

Thanks Jon!
I’ll try this as soon as I can, sounds like it should to the trick 🙂

I just recently started working with Tobii, and still figuring out all its capabilities.
This is actually the first time I’ve posted a question about it, and
I’m very happy to see such a vibrant community!

Can you recommend any other blogs or forums that deal with eye tracking and Tobii in particular?

Jon Ward - July 8, 2010

Of course ours is the best 🙂 but you should join the EYE TRACKING GROUP on Linkedin, also check out the official Tobii blog here : http://tobii.posterous.com/ and James Breeze’s blog from Australia here : http://blog.objectivedigital.com/ and then get on Twitter and follow Tobii, Acuity ETS, and numerous others – look at our Twitter list (ACUITYETS) and James (JAMESBREEZE) and you will find lots of useful contacts there.

If you want white papers and reports on Tobii kit in practice check out here : http://www.diigo.com/list/tobiieyetracking


Shira - July 8, 2010

Great, thanks a lot! 🙂

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