loopbio blog

2020 In Review

Written on Friday March 12, 2021

2020 was a unique year for everyone, and Loopbio was no different. To meet the needs of this new normal, we continued to extend and improve our products and are especially encouraged by how diversely they were used by scientists in homes and labs around the world.

The popularity of Loopy is continuously growing, with its use doubling over the previous year.

In 2020 Loopy was used:

Because Loopy is web based, it can be used from anywhere - a perfect tool for working from home during the various lockdowns and closures. The integrated group feature helped sharing data quickly between lab members and allowed collaborative analysis in real time - minimizing the loss of productivity from remote work.

In the figure below which shows the total number of users logging into Loopy (pooled across all online and on-site systems in all countries) you can see small effects of the first and second lockdows, but the strongest effect is the Christmas break - it seems everyone really needed a rest this year.

loopy logins per week per instance

Loopy usage across all instances throughout the year

Let's review the year in order and highlight some of the moments we are most proud of:

Science in Home Office

Due to the pandemic the working life of many people changed and home office started to play a major role in our everyday lives. To support the increasing use of Loopy online (seen in the graph above) we decided to add more computers and GPUs to our loopy cloud to support those who are working on tracking, analysis, or deep-learning from home all around the world.

Loopy Continues to Improve

Throughout the year we didn’t stop working on Loopy - adding new features and updating the Software. The new features are immediately available to all existing users for free.

We improved the search feature by adding the ability to look for videos based on tags, labels and projects. By making it easier to navigate data, Loopy works better in large collaborative environments, such as when a loopy on-site server is shared by different research groups within a department - with all users uploading, processing yet working from home as was seen this year.

We added a lot of new audio and video processing functionality in Loopy. This included the generation of audio spectrograms, animated amplitude histograms and more. These can be used when scoring videos, allowing for mixed visual-audio scoring.

Loopy can be used immediately for free by signing up for a trial at https://app.loopb.io.

Locust Virtual Reality

Another exciting highlight of 2020 was showcasing the world’s first virtual reality system for freely walking locusts. The system was commisioned by The Department of Collective Behavior at MPI-AB and the Centre for the Advanced Study of Collective Behaviour.

Research on locusts received well-deserved attention in 2020 as huge locust swarms devastating Africa and Asia emerged. Answers on how such swarms emerge and what can break them apart are urgently needed. Several televised documentaries throughout the year featured the research done with the help of our locust virtual reality system to help answer these questions.

For more information please see our case study: Panoramic Virtual Reality System for Locusts.

Refining our Motif and Kastl Products

We extended the specifications of Kastl based on customer feedback. These included extending the specifications to meet the needs of scientists wanting high-throughput methods to study small animals with optional support of optogenetics and other automation possibilities.

We also improved our range of cameras and lenses for Motif. In particular due to the increasing number of customers requesting multi-camera synchronized systems for 3D tracking.

Imaging Encyclopedia

Recently we released the Imaging Encyclopedia which describes how technical and operational aspects such as lighting, camera adjustment and scene composition are important for image quality.

With the Imaging Encyclopedia, we hope to help our customers as well as everybody who is interested in working with cameras, lenses and lighting to collect good quality imaging and video data. We continue to extend the Imaging Encyclopedia constantly, so check in every once in a while, and feel free to suggest more topics that we should cover.

2020 was a big year for loopbio!
We are looking forward to an even better 2021!
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