Miscellaneous Software Links:
Swis Track – Multi-Object Tracking Software for Robotics and Biology: free open-source tracking software that can be used on-line in real-time or with recorded video files.
SwisTrack – on WikiBooks.
Poster describing SwisTrack used for a fish project: presented at the FitFish conference in Barcelona in 2010.
SwisTrack Manual for biologists/dummies – I: If you have valuable addition we can upload your version.
We use it for tracking fish in 2D as well as 3D – entire fish or a reflective spot on the peduncle to determine tail beat frequency/amplitude. We also use the advanced feature of having the x- and y- coordinates available in real-time so we can make a feed back on the animal like for determing temperature/salinity preference like described in Schurmann, H. & Steffensen, J. F. (1994). Spontaneous activity of Atlantic cod, Gadus morhua, exposed to graded hypoxia at three different temperatures. J. exp. Biol. 197; 129-142.
Matlab tools for digitizing video files and calibrating cameras:
From Ty Hedrick’s Lab at Det. of Biology, Univ. of North Carolina.
VirtualDub – a video capture/processing utility for 32-bit and 64-bit Windows platforms (98/ME/NT4/2000/XP/Vista/7), licensed under the GNU General Public License (GPL). It lacks the editing power of a general-purpose editor such as Adobe Premiere, but is streamlined for fast linear operations over video.
We use it among others for deinterlacing/splitting avi files with 25/30 frames/second to 50/60 fields per second.
H264 Web Cam – a 32-channel h264 remote video surveillance software for Windows. It can capture images at up to 30 fps from many brands of IP as well as USB cameras, Capture cards. This software has an advanced video motion detection algorithm. It is not freeware, but cost about US $ 50,- for the Professional version. Can be used as a digital video recorder. Great value for the money.
Vernier Logger Pro – is award-winning, data-collection and analysis software for Windows and Mac computers. Among others it can:
- Capture videos to add a visual record of an experiment synchronized with your data.
- Analyze a video frame by frame or take measurements from a still photo.
- Draw predictions on graphs prior to data collection.
- Perform statistical analysis of data, including integrals, tangents, curve fits, and more.
Cost about US $ 200. Generous Site License = Logger Pro 3 includes a site license for your entire school or college department.
We use it for video analysis of swimming fish (behaviour and tail and fin beat frequency at different swimming speeds) as well as for integrating the signal from the analog output from an infrared carbon dioxide analyzer.