View Full Version : Biomech Software

Ray Smith
10-15-2000, 11:25 AM
Hi all,

I'm forwarding this for Marc Lawrence, please direct any correspondance to


Hi Ray

I am hoping you may be able to help me a little. As part of my MSc in
Medical Physics (basically a cover title for BioEngineering) at Aberdeen
University, I was evaluating the biomechanical effects of a prototype back
support. Unfortunately the electrogoniometer I was supposed to use was
broken, and the only equipment available was a two sensor flock of birds

At the time there was no money available to purchase biomechanical analysis
software, so I wrote a data logger in C++ to work in Microsoft Windows. The
purpose of this was to save the data from the flock of birds, direct to the
hard disk, in a CSV file format (with timing information). Logging options
(such as X,Y,Z or Rotation etc) could be chosen by the user.

For the project the software worked well, and it was possible to use
programmes like Excel (yuk) to analyse the results. At the end, during my
Viva, the external examiner recommended that I release the software to the
biomechanical community. I have checked with the Univeristy of Aberdeen, and
my supervisors, and basically they have agreed to this. Thus I am happy to
release the code, which would be on a no fee basis, and if people wanted to
develop it further, I would be able to provide some limited support (Im no
longer working with a FoB system in front of me), although the uni would
retain the copyright.

Because I access email from laptop at home, I am not allowing myself to
register for various newsgroups etc, due to the shear volume of traffic
often generated, and the cost of downloading through my mobile phone to the
PC. Would you therefore be able to post a message to the group on my behalf,
basically stating the above.

I designed the system so that the code would be fairly modular (although
currently it deals with only two sensors at the moment, reporting X,Y,Z and
Xang, Yang, Zang), and use RS232 comms directly (ie no use of external
drivers). It is not fool proof, and has many problems. But because of the
way it works adding more sensors will just decrease the time it takes
between each 'read' of the data values.

I would have no problem with emailing the design specs which I included in
the Thesis, which has an overview of the windows procedures and calls which
allow the system to record in 'real time' (something which is actually
impossibile in MS windows).

As a bit of a background, before doing the MSc, I worked (and still do some)
as a Machine Vision Consultant, using and designing Image Processing
algorithms, and have around 5 years of C++ experience, as well as MS Windows
NT programming experience - collected through Pilkington Glass (UK) and
other companies (contractor). Currently I am training as a clinical
scientist in the NHS (Why - programming is much more lucrative, but nowhere
near as fun!) hence why I no longer have a FoB in front of me.

If people wish to email me further (m.lawrence@physics.org), then I do no
have a problem with responding, and eventually within the next few months,
would like to have setup a web site. But that involves time, and I dont seem
to have a great deal of that at the moment!.

Once again, many thanks for any help you could provide

Marc Lawrence

Marc Lawrence

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