Category Review: data acquisition, control software for Mac OS X
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Category Review: data acquisition, control software for Mac OS X

This MacNews Category Review looks at Mac software for data acquisition and control. Products covered include Absorbance Extension, ADInstruments, Atmoscular, Biopac Student Lab, BrainVoyager, CardioVison Digital Systems, ConsultantX, DAQ Plot. DataStudio, HOBOWare, InfoScribe, IngredixX, Kmax, LabView, Logger Pro, MacForensics Lab, Modbus View, Multipoint Calibration Extension, PMCS Process Management and Control, Senus Pro, SpectraSuite, SuperLab and XL Stat.

Absorbance Extension

Absorbance Extension ( is a Chart extension that allows you to convert spectrophotometer outputs from transmittance to absorbance. The relationship between transmittance and absorbance is non-linear and the Absorbance extension performs a conversion between the two, generating a linear result.


ADInstruments ( is real time chart recording and storage oscilloscope software for life science research and education. Used in conjunction with PowerLab hardware, it provides a data recording and analysis system. ADInstruments' Charts component lets you use your Mac as a multichannel chart recorder, while its Scope component lets you use your computer as a two-channel storage oscilloscope. PowerLab systems provide a data recording solution that purportedly doesn't require programing. Data is recorded, displayed, analyzed and saved to disk in real time. You can transfer numerical data to post analysis programs or transfer graphical data directly to reports.


Atmoscular ( is a standard atmosphere calculator.

Biopac Student Lab

The Biopac Student Lab ( system includes the hardware and software to conduct life science student practical lessons. Measurements of ECG, EEG, EMG and EOG, pulmonary function, gas analysis, reaction time, nerve conduction, and other topics are presented. The hardware has four input channels and one output channel. The system can also be customized for other measurements and also makes a useful research tool.

BrainVoyager QX

BrainVoyager ( is a software package for the analysis and visualization of the structure and function of the human brain. It allows neuroscientists and medical professionals to create rotatable 3D models of the working brain from MRI, CT and PET scans. BrainVoyager provides open file formats and scriptable programming interfaces. It allows you to co-register images from multiple modalities and to align brains of different subjects. The visualization capabilities include volume and surface rendering using OpenGL allowing "3D flights" through the brain. Reconstructed polygon meshes can be morphed to produce "flat maps" of the cortex with superimposed color-coded functional data. Reconstructions of heads and brains can be "sliced" in real-time to explore any portion of the brain.

CardioVison Digital Systems

CardioVision Digital System ( from Argentina performs angiography image capture. At the same time it performs complex digital procedures for medical advantage. Its filter management lets you perform diagnostics. ConsultantX


ConsultantX ( is a is a full featured SCADA application for MacOSX 10.3 and later. SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition) systems are used in industrial, mining and civil engineering applications to control distributed systems from a master location. SCADA is a very broad umbrella that describes solutions such as monitoring a remote water pumping facility so you can see the motor amps and pump flow rate on the screen of your Mac.

DAQ Plot

DAQ Plot ( lets you plot up to four electrical signals from a DAQ device hooked to your computer's USB connector or other connectors. You can use the screw connectors to attach sensor wires and watch the signals graph in real time. Voltage is displayed in a real-time strip chart fashion. Voltage time series can be saved, retrieved and appended, exported to spreadsheet applications or other applications and exported to a full-featured graph layout application. DAQ Plot also includes feedback control loop parameters and a command line tool to automate DAQ functions.


DataStudio ( enables students that use the Mac to take advantage of PASCO’s standards-based science solutions, which combine sensors, interfaces and software to help students develop an understanding of science concepts. DataStudio can be used to acquire data from any of PASCO's ScienceWorkshop interfaces and sensors, Xplorer hand-held datalogger or PASPORT family of sensors. Students can acquire data, display the results in a variety of ways and analyze the results.

HOBOware Software

HoboWare Software (, which provides launch and readout, as well as plotting for the HOBO U12 Family data loggers (e.g. probes, sensors). Data can be exported for more extensive analysis with other programs such as spreadsheets.


InfoScribe ( provides data management for scientific instrumentation. InfoScribe Director (IS-Director) is designed for data collection, organization, visualization, and messaging among multiple sources and subscribers of data. InfoScribe gateway is a tool that provides applications with bidirectional communication to InfoScribe Portal, InfoScribe Director and InfoScribe Server. InfoScribe Portal (IS-Portal) is uniquely designed for data collection, organization, and visualization from a single source/connection of data.


IngrerdixX ( is a simple database for laboratories that allows you to file your measurements, track projects and case data.


Kmax ( is a data acquisition and instrument control environment w/advanced features for data management, visualization, and reporting. It supports single- and dual-parameter data displays, CAMAC, GPIB, VME and VXI instrumentation, event-by-event data acquisition and on-line and off-line analysis.

LabView ( is a graphical system design platform for test, control and embedded system development. It offers general compatibility with The MathWorks; Matlab software, FPGA-based custom hardware design wizards for building industrial controllers and updates to the NI Modulation Toolkit for LabVIEW so engineers can develop models to simulate communications systems and evaluate parameter and design decisions. There's also the LabVIEW Real-Time Module, which lets you design real-time data acquisition and control applications.

Logger Pro

Logger Pro ( brings together real-time graphing, analytical functions and hands-on learning. With it, students can collect data from a variety of synchronized sources, including Vernier's LabPro interface, Go! Devices, more than 50 different types of sensors, videos, pictures, GPS handhelds, Spectrometers, and more.

MacForensics Lab

MacForensics Lab ( is a suite of forensics and analysis tools in one package.


Modbus View ( is a management program for LabVIEW environments. It allows communication with industrial equipment (transducers, industrial programmable robots, etc).

Multipoint Calibration Extension

Multipoint Calibration Extension ( is a Chart extension that performs linear and non-linear calibration on transducers, sensors, pH electrodes and other equipment. There is also: a Peak Parameters Extension, a Chart extension that determines a number of parameters for an individual peak; a pH Measurement Extension, a Chart extension that allows calibration of pH and ISE (ion selective electrodes) electrodes using single or double point methods; a Play Sound Extension, a Chart extension that allows selected Chart data to be played as sound; a QuickTime Capture Module, a Chart module used for simultaneous recording and synchronization of a QuickTime movie and a Chart data file; ReadScope Extension, a Chart extension that allows Chart for the Mac to read Scope files directly; RMS & Noise Extension, a Chart extension that determines the power content of a signal; SAECF Extension, a Chart extension that calculates the averaged cycle of ECG signals; Savitzky-Golay Extension, a Chart extension that provides off-line data smoothing; Shift Extension, a Chart extension that allows Chart for Mac data to be shifted backwards or forwards in time; Spirometry Extension, a Chart extension that's used to derive a number of respiratory parameters based on flow and volume; STM Extension, a Chart extension that displays a plot of frequency versus time where frequency amplitude is represented by color; Template Extension, a Chart extension that lets you match a data template with similar occurrences in a larger data set; and XY Plot Extension, a Chart extension that provides an online (real time) XY-plot window that plots one channel of data against another.

PMCS Process Management and Control

PMCS Process Management and Control ( is a system for process automation in all areas of biotechnology for the pharmaceutical industry, R&D labs, universities and more. It's a software suite containing tools for configuring realtime equipment and control modules, unit operation and batch recipe logic. A plant-synoptic language for creating operator interfaces and graphical recipe editor, scheduler and viewer for Batch Recipe management are included.

Sensus Pro

Sensus Pro ( is a miniature dive data recorder for scuba divers, freedivers, commercial divers, and marine researchers. It stores your last 100 hours of depth and temperature profiles automatically. It downloads to Macs, PCs and Palm PDAs and includes all necessary software to review and log your dives. Sampling interval can be programmed from one second to two minutes.


SpectraSuite ( is a modular, Java-based spectroscopy software platform. The software can control any Ocean Optics USB spectrometer and device, as well as any other manufacturer’s USB instrumentation (using the appropriate drivers).


SuperLab ( is stimulus presentation software for building experiments in psychology, running them on subjects, and collecting reaction time data. Features include presenting visual and auditory stimuli, stimuli lists, interfacing with EEG, MRI and other devices and conditional branching.


XL Stat ( is a data analysis and statistical solution for Microsoft Excel. The XLStat add-in offers a variety of functions to enhance the analytical capabilities of Excel.


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